Peterloo2019 Laurel, Manchester Histories


Be a Laurel & help create a piece of history!

Performance to commemorate 200th Anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre

From the Crowd is a moving interactive outdoor performance inspired by the spirit of Peterloo and the voices of people today to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre.

Three x 60 min performances will take place on Friday 16 August.  It will involve spoken word, music, choirs, chants, and songs, remembering all those whose lives were lost or changed forever two hundred years ago.

The cultural commemoration event will be created by Evie Manning (Common Wealth Theatre), Robin Richards (Dutch Uncles), Young Identity, choirs, performers, and the people of Greater Manchester.  From the Crowd will be a co-production with Brighter Sound, Manchester Histories and Walk the Plank in partnership with Manchester City Council.

What is a Laurel?!

A Laurel is someone who will have responsibility on the day for a small group of audience members and will help them take part in a specially commissioned reading as part of the performance. At Peterloo in 1819 people wore laurels (leaves) to symbolise that they were a steward for their community, this will be similar.

You will be a brilliant communicator, confident with strangers and be a collective player. We encourage people of all ages and backgrounds to be Laurels on the day.  No previous experience is required and you will have lots of support during rehearsals from our friendly creative team in learning your role. 


Please join us on Friday 5th July at Manchester Central, M2 3GX, for a mass reading rehearsal taster session to learn more about the performance, the role of a Laurel and meet the team.


  • Rehearsal Week – Tuesday 6th to Friday 9th August:  attend at least one 3-hour session.
  • Rehearsal Full Cast – Saturday 10th August
  • Dress Rehearsal – Thursday 15th August, early evening (time tbc)
  • Show Day – Friday 16th August: