The premiere of ‘Innit’, a musical that delves into working-class life within its precincts its soon coming to Salford. This production, launching at The Lowry theatre in September, owes its cast to a local effort: the Salford Loading initiative. This collaboration between Quayside MediaCity and The Art House seeks to repurpose empty retail spaces, offering them to community organisations. Among the beneficiaries is I4YPC, the charity responsible for ‘Innit’, which was granted spaces for auditions and rehearsals.
The narrative of ‘Innit’ revolves around themes familiar to many in Salford: family challenges, the turbulence of teenage years, and the life-altering decisions that often punctuate youth. Reflecting the authenticity of the narrative, many cast members hail from similar backgrounds and settings.
Recent University of Salford graduate, Will Van De Bours, plays the protagonist, Ashley Thompson. Beyond his role as the troubled 18-year-old, Van De Bours, who is also associated with the band New Albion, collaborated musically with Micky Dacks, the creator of ‘Innit’ and the founder of I4YPC.
Amy Warhurst, an experienced drama instructor from Manchester, takes on the role of Ashley’s mother, ‘Kelly’. Warhurst’s dedication to drama education spans over two decades, marking her as a seasoned contributor to the project.
The cast also includes Leslie Davidoff, who assumes the role of JK, inspired by a Manchester music shop legend. Davidoff, although originally from East London, has extensive acting credentials in the North West, with roles in shows like Coronation Street and Peaky Blinders.
Ange Lea, the Deputy CEO of I4YPC, underscored the diverse experiences and backgrounds of the cast, emphasising the genuine representation they bring to the production. The importance of the Salford Loading initiative’s support was also highlighted, particularly as it facilitates rehearsals at Quayside MediaCity.
To further community engagement, I4YPC plans to provide free tickets and transportation for select young residents of Salford.