CitySession in conversation with Fiona Gasper, Executive Director of the Royal Exchange Theatre

Organiser: CityCo
Location: Royal Exchange Theatre, St Ann's Square, M2 7DH

Time: 5.30pm – 7.00pm. Guests are also invited to stay for the evening performance of Billy Liar, 7.30pm – 9.45pm.

Cost: Free

"The theatre is the only institution in the world which has been dying for four thousand years and has never succumbed. It requires tough and devoted people to keep it alive." John Steinbeck, Once there was a war.

CityCo's latest CitySession event takes a cultural turn with Fiona Jasper discussing the priorities of the Royal Exchange Theatre and evolving cultural programme in Manchester for the coming year.

Fiona Gasper will be in conversation with Manchester journalist Helen Nugent.

Saved from demolition in 1976 and badly damaged by the 1996 IRA bombing of Manchester, the Royal Exchange remains one of Britain's best loved and most distinctive theatres. Housed in the Victorian Cotton Exchange buildings, the award-winning Royal Exchange has a history spanning five decades.

The theatre is a centre of excellence; attracting national touring companies as well as producing theatre, learning programmes and training schemes that develop artistic talent and skills.

Fiona is one of Manchester's leading cultural ambassadors and has worked in the sector for more than 25 years. She is also a Board member of Manchester's inaugural Business Improvement District, the Heart of Manchester BID.

During this special evening, Fiona will discuss the importance of a strong cultural offer for Manchester and introduce the theatre's latest production, Billy Liar from Stockport-born director Sam Yates. Sam takes on this iconic play adapted for the stage from the 1958 original novel by Keith Waterhouse.

Helen Nugent is a successful freelance journalist, cultural critic and media trainer. She has written for The Guardian, The Times, Mail on Sunday, The Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, The Sunday Times, The Independent and Yorkshire Post. Helen also writes for The Big Issue in the North, Marketing Manchester and Creative Tourist. Helen is the founder of popular culture webzine Northern Soul.


5.30pm: Registration and refreshments

6.00pm: Helen Nugent in conversation with Fiona Gasper

6.45pm: Q&A

7.00pm: Close

If you are interested in attending please contact

Subscribe to our newsletter