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New musical gets the chop

Updated: May 14, 2023

Poster for the punk-rock musical "Lizzie" about Lizzie Borden, at Hope Mill Theatre Manchester

Exploring the real-life story of alleged American axe murderer Lizzie Borden, punk rock musical Lizzie is the autumn home-produced show at Manchester's Hope Mill Theatre (September 1-30), before a UK tour.

Lauren Drew, Maiya Quansah-Breed, Shekinah McFarlane and Mairi Barclay will star. Lauren (SIX, Legally Blonde, The Voice) will play Lizzie; Maiya Quansah-Breed (SIX, Rent) is Alice; Shekinah McFarlane (SIX, Parade, The Voice) will play Emma, and Mairi Barclay (Pippin, Mother Goose) takes the role of Bridget.

First seen in New York four years ago, the show follows the famous case of a young woman accused of murdering her father and stepmother with an axe back in 1892 (she was acquitted after a botched investigation and trial).

Resurrected Lizzie, her older sister Emma, maid Bridget and neighbour Alice bring history back to life in the musical, supported by an all-female band.

Director and co-founder of Hope Mill, William Whelton, said: "As a massive true-crime fan myself, this musical is the perfect way to explore this infamous story, with the added extra of an incredible punk rock score.

"The real heart of the show is how it explores the power, resilience and strength of women and their relationships. When the show premiered off-Broadway, it really was ahead of its time and it now feels like the perfect time to create a new version.”

Lizzie has already has swung her axe in over 60 cities, in six countries and five languages and has been honoured with dozens of awards. A Danish production was seen in London in 2017, but Hope Mill's will be the first UK-created version and tour.

More info and tickets here


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