A Royal Exchange Theatre Young Company Production


  • Created by Matt Hassall and the Young Company
  • 17 August 2017 - 20 August 2017
  • On Tour / External

“For the first time, the past became for me as real as the present day.”

Something is happening. Underground.
Someone is running. Someone is hiding. Someone is dancing.
All of them waiting.
For the time when they can be free.

Charting the shifting and stalling attitudes to gay rights, WE WERE TOLD THERE WAS DANCING marks the 50th anniversary of the Sexual Offences Act that began the decriminalisation of homosexuality in 1967 in England and Wales.

Following the sell-out successes of THE FACTORY and NOTHING, the Royal Exchange Theatre’s award-winning Young Company return with a piece that unlocks hidden histories and celebrates the radical individuals that have changed our future.

This project is supported by a grant from Superbia. Superbia Grants provide financial support for LGBT events as part of Manchester Pride’s commitment to the quality and diversity of cultural events taking place throughout the year in Greater Manchester superbia.org.uk


This show is a promenade production in a large underground site, so there will be standing and walking throughout. Please wear appropriate and comfortable clothes and flat footwear. It is advised not to bring any bulky items or luggage as they will have to remain with you throughout the performance.

There are two adapted performances for audience members with mobility needs on Friday 18 August, 6pm and Saturday 19 August, 3pm. These adapted performances are not exclusive and can be attended by patrons without mobility needs also. There will be a BSL interpreted performance on Thursday 17 August, 8pm.

Audience members are asked to gather at the Cross St entrance to the Royal Exchange Arcade at Cross St, Manchester, M2 7DH. Latecomers will not be admitted due to the nature of the show and, unfortunately, we are not able to offer refunds to latecomers.

  • Event Information
  • VENUE: The Royal Exchange Basement

    PERFORMANCE DATES: Thursday 17 - Sunday 20 August 2017


    Thursday 17 August 7pm, 8pm (BSL), 9pm
    Friday 18 August, 6pm, 8pm, 9pm
    Saturday 19 August, 2pm, 3pm, 7pm, 8pm, 9pm
    Sunday 20 Aug, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm

    Performances are approx 1 hour duration.


    There are ticket holds for BSL users, email box.office@royalexchange.co.uk to book

    Box Office: 0161 833 9833 / online


  • Creative Team
  • DIRECTOR Matt Hassall
    DESIGNER Bethany Wells
    ASSOCIATE PRODUCER  Sarah Rowland-Hill
    ASSOCIATE DIRECTOR Josie Hepplewhite
    ASSISTANT DIRECTOR  Anna Berentzen
    DRAMATURG Lucija Klarik
    STAGE MANAGER Amber Chapell
    TECHNICIAN Gerry Marsden
    WARDROBE SUPERVISOR Annabeth Fernley
    YOUNG TECHNICIANS Heather Cohen, Sam Frakes, Alex Gaudel, Holly Patra, Rose Wagner-Revitt and Kate Webster

  • Ellie Burns

    Oceana Cage

    Brogen Campbell

    Joe Clegg

    Emily Cox

    Shaban Dar

    Zak Ford-Williams

    Hannah Foster

    Lauren Greer

    Josh Hawson

    Tom Lyons

    Billie Meredith

    Jessica Murdoch

    Yandass Ndlovu

    Annie Rogers

    Kenya Sterling

    Kenan Vurgun

    Zahi Wade

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