Manchester-based PAI Productions' new project Come Laugh With Us, gets underway at the city's 53two venue later this month.
PAI is a collaborative, female-led northern production company operating across TV, theatre and film, championing "amazing stories, veraciously told", by women for women.
Come Laugh With Us is a series of six new comic theatre shorts written by and aimed at women, running from May 23-27. The plays have been put together by top regional directors and actors.
Writers Paris Rogers, co-founder of PAI Productions and a producer for the BBC (plus The Lowry, Salford Arts, Oldham Coliseum and the Leicester Square Theatre) and Hilary Strong (Edinburgh Fringe, Greenwich Theatre) and other writers will explore "refreshing, relatable and relevant" stories.
Directors include Kim Burnett, Lucie Jowett (community director at Bolton Octagon) and Kitty Ball (a tutor on the Young Vic's directors' course and at Rose Bruford college).
Among the cast are local acting icon and teacher Karen Henthorn (Coronation Street, Eastenders, Royal Shakespeare Company), BAFTA award-winning Marie Critchley (In The Flesh, Coronation Street, Happy Valley) and Skai Cody, co-founder of Pai.