From punk rock to Billy Liar

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Billy Liar – the classic tale of Northern life in the 1960s – comes to Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre from tomorrow until July 12.

Adapted for the stage by Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall from Waterhouse’s original 1959 novel, the action of the play revolves around Billy – a 19-year-old nobody, living at home with his parents and grandmother, and working a dead end job in an undertakers.

It is only through his imagination that he can escape the day-to-day drudgery.

Set over one eventful Saturday, Billy’s lies spark a series of explosive confrontations.

And though the northern lad harbours dreams of running away to London to become a scriptwriter, Billy’s plans are threatened by his family’s expectations, his romantic affairs and his own fears.

Harry McEntire, currently on our small screens in Episodes, plays Billy in this new production.

His previous Royal Exchange credits include Winterlong and Punk Rock.

The production is directed by guest director, Stockport-born Sam Yates.

He says: “Billy Liar is a sometimes painfully truthful insight into northern family. The unmatchable intimacy of the Exchange makes it the ideal home for this play. I’m thrilled to be working with Harry one of Britain’s most exciting young actors.”

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