The Three Minute Theatre is a cosy, independent theatre based on the ground floor of Afflecks. Ran by John and Gina, the theatre is made up of entirely recycled products and even has its own bar. The theatre is non-funded and has been very successful so far!
How long have you had the Three Minute Theatre?
We got the keys in April 2011. We were previously located on the third floor of Afflecks in a small unit, selling off some of the costumes and props from our former career in professional music and cabaret. The front of the shop was turned into a tiny theatre. We put on our first Three Minute Theatre Festival in October 2010. The idea was to attract people up to the third floor which was at that time still being developed. The plays only lasted 3 minutes and were spaced out all day to give people a chance to browse the shops.
Tell us a bit about the theatre?
We went from an empty shop in April 2011 to an internationally recognised, award winning 60-70 theatre, cinema and music venue with a licenced bar and a programme of events. We range from new theatre, comedy, film events, poetry and spoken word festivals, political and social events: It’s been a pretty hectic three years!
The 3MT has twice hosted the 24/7 Theatre festival and is the home of the renowned Manchester Shakespeare Company whose second production ‘Before Juliet’ opens on 17th March. The in-house development programme nurtures local talent and develops work to a professional commercial standard. Regular monthly events support local artists, graduates, students, actors, film makers, writers and musicians and provides a starting point for anyone interested in a real career in the arts. Pulse Mcr is the 3MT’s production company and is currently producing 4 new plays by first time local writers. The 3MT’s third International Women’s Week Festival takes place from the 3rd March with a host of diverse events celebrating women’s creativity and diversity.
Expect the unexpected!
Why did you choose to home the theatre at Afflecks?
We knew Afflecks from the eighties and it was our first port of call when we decided to relocate to Manchester. The massive and continuing support we found from all the Afflecks team has been one of the key factors in the success of the 3MT. Afflecks supports and nurtures new businesses in the same way that the 3MT supports and develops new talent. Our relationship with Tony Martin and his team has been one of the most satisfying and inspiring parts of this adventure, from applying for planning permission and licencing all the way through to developing our recycling workshops. We don’t think we could have done this anywhere else. The very idea of an independent, non-funded theatre in the city centre of Manchester, putting on radical new work, developing new ideas, creating new theatre, music, film and performance and providing a space for the vast and diverse creative talent of Manchester people to blossom is continually inspiring to us. And where else is it going to be? Afflecks of course.
What do you do outside of Afflecks?
Sleep! We also go to the theatre (not this one).
Give us a random fact!
We appeared in a television documentary about Ibiza when performing our cabaret show out there. It’s still out there somewhere…