Manchester Lines

Library Theatre Company in association with Ask Property Developments present
12 June - 7 July, Number One First Street
Jackie Kay, Music composed by Errollyn Wallen, Directed by Wils Wilson

In a lost property room in central Manchester, en route somewhere, six people relate their own personal journeys. Manchester Lines tells stories, reveals fragments of lifelines. It asks: is there an instant when your life changes forever? How consciously do we choose the path our lives take? Do we choose at all? What happens to all the lives we do not live? Welcome to the Lost Property Office of the Soul.

Directed by Wils Wilson and written by the award winning Jackie Kay (Red Dust Road, Trumpet), with music specially composed by Errollyn Wallen (Cautionary Tales, Opera North; One Night, BBC 1), Manchester Lines is created in Manchester, for Manchester. Staged high on the fifth floor of Number One, First Street, Manchester Lines is the most recent of the Library Theatre Company’s intimate and dynamic ‘one chance to see’ theatre experiences. All performances feature community choir specially formed from Manchester residents.

Manchester Lines contains strong language.

Still not sure if Manchester Lines is for you? Take a look at the impressive biographies of the creative team and cast.

Listen to what some of you thought of the show…

And here we look back at our journey and all the lovely things you said about the production…

Ticket Details


Previews (Tue 12 & Wed 13 Jun) £15

Mon-Thu & Sat Matinees £22 (£18 concs)

Fri 5.15pm £16

Fri & Sat Evenings £24

BSL Performances:

Wed 27 Jun 7.15pm

Sat 30 Jun 2.15pm


TO BOOK BY PHONE: 0161 200 1500


*Running Time – 95 mins approx (no interval).

*There will be a bar run by Brodericks that will be open 45 mins prior to each event.


• Plenty of on-street parking meters (free from 8pm) close by.

• Two on-site parks, operated by Q-Parks Ltd, as follows:

1. Car park next to the building (gravel surface, entrances on Hulme Street and Medlock Street) £5 all day; £1.50 up to two hours.

2.Other car park (Tarmac surface, entrance on Whitworth Street West): Up to one hour £2, up to two hours £4, up to three hours £5, up to four hours £6, up to eight hours £8. Saturday up to four hours £2, up to 12midnight £5.


Number One First Street

1 First Street

M15 4FN

The home of Manchester City Council – and the venue for Manchester Lines…


  • Anna: Bettrys Jones
  • Eugene: John Branwell
  • Louis: Marcquelle Ward
  • Arnold: Dominic Harlan
  • Jessie: Anne Kidd
  • Omar: Tachia Newall
  • Pauline: Claire Brown
  • Shanti: Amelia Donkor

Creative Team

  • Writer: Jackie Kay
  • Composer: Errollyn Wallen
  • Director: Wils Wilson
  • Lighting Designer: Anna Barrett
  • Movement Director: Lesley Hutchison
  • Assistant Director: Joshua Azouz
  • Designer: Amanda Stoodley
  • Sound Designer: Peter Rice

Poet Jackie Kay’s tale, despite its heightened quality, has the lightest of lyrical touches… It’s the downbeat, low-key quality of the show that makes it so moving, as it traces the maps of the heart and lexicons of loss, not just of the characters, but – in a wonderful, final coup de theatre – of the audience, too.

The Guardian

The imaginative direction by Wils Wilson creates an anarchic atmosphere in which anything can happen… Not so much a play, more of a celebration… One of the Library Theatre Company’s best.

What’s on Stage

Highly enjoyable… Jackie Kay was an inspired choice to write the script. I hope she writes more plays soon.

Creative Tourist

Inventive… All credit to the Library Theatre Company for turning their temporary homelessness into a positive experiment.

The Arts Desk

‘The company couldn’t be boring if it tried, it just isn’t part of their DNA… An intelligent, grown-up drama.

Sale and Altrincham Messenger

Sometimes it is not the destination but the journey that counts.

The Stage

Director Wils Wilson makes magical use of the space, characters and connecting lines… The ending is stunning: It's a wonderful, uplifting end to the unique Manchester Lines experience.

Cultural Shenanigans

Full of pathos… Jackie Kay is a wonderful writer, and Manchester Lines is a marvellous celebration of the humanity of ordinary people.

The Morning Star

A final alphabetical choral item sweeps you off your fifth-storey feet.

Remote Goat

Poetic and quietly miraculous… A show with enough heart and soul.

Manchester Theatre Awards

By the time we leave the [set], the script and the production’s detail and precision, with the skilled performance, have made the experience communal and enlivening.”


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