Plane Performance is a contemporary theatre company based in Manchester that makes performance pieces mostly by deconstructing existing and iconic performance texts, which have so far included Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard and Three Sisters, the film Brief Encounter, the musical Carousel and the opera La Traviata. The company has been directed from the start by Neil Mackenzie, working in conjunction with performer Niki Woods and a number of other performers and artists.
Formed in the early nineties the company has toured widely since then in England as well as Germany and Croatia. Their work has previously been described as ‘Consequential, cool and intellectually gripping’ by Hildersheimer Zeitung’, ‘An impressively conceived stage, really mesmerizing acting… the unique festival hit’ by Slobodna Dalmacjia (Croatian national newspaper) and ‘Brecht for the 21st Century’ (Live Art Magazine). It has also featured in a number of academic publications including Postdramatic Theatre, Performing Narrative, Performance Paradigm, Critical Stages and New Theatre Quarterly.
The director Neil Mackenzie is also the Artistic Director of the Flare International Festival of New Theatre, and the joint programme leader of the Drama and Contemporary Performance degree in the Manchester School of Theatre at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Plane Performance has received support from a range of sources including Arts Council England, Manchester Metropolitan University, Prema Arts Centre, HAb, TransEuropa2000, Split International Theatre Festival, Axis Arts Centre, Nuffield Theatre, Arnolfini, University of Central Lancashire, York St John University and Z-Arts in Manchester.
Other performers who have worked with the company include Kevin Egan, Leentje Van de Cruys, Anna Fenemore, Georgia Dawson, Megan Harris, Craig Pullen, Anna Wilson, Russell Armstrong, Mike Farrimond, Luke Dickson, Noel Byrne, Heather Burton, Jenny Rutter, Kerry Williamson, Craig Stevens, Graeme Rose, Tim Ingram, Fiona McEwan, Matt Brennan, Birdy Newberry, Abi Fewtrell, Darren Gates, Steve Hewitt, Stephanie Jukes, Adam Peacock, Claire Frost and Clare Turrall-Clarke. The company has also collaborated with Mole Wetherell, Nicki Hobday, Spencer Marsden, Ben Faulks, Zoe Hammond, The Concert Party, Kristin Scheving, Alex Bradley, Kevin Malone, Simon Turner, Steve Bull and John Forster.