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William Wycherley’s raunchy Restoration comedy The Country Wife opens the new autumn/winter 2012/13 Season at Manchester Royal Exchange Theatre from tonight until October 20.

Set in gossip-fuelled 17th century London, intrigue, sex and seduction are at the heart of the action which centres on randy rake Harry Horner who feigns impotence to charm his way into the hearts and boudoirs of the apparently respectable wives of London society.

Newly arrived in town – with his ‘country wife’ Margery – Jack Pinchwife is jealous to the core and strains to keep his innocent spouse away from Horner’s clutches.

She is desperate to savour all the pleasures the big city has to offer. But when Harry finally meets Margery, a collision course is set.

Banned for nearly 200 years for its bawdiness, the play is being brought back to sparkling life by Olivier Award winning director Polly Findlay. Her recent credits include Good at the Royal Exchange and Antigone at the National Theatre.

Evening performance times are Monday to Friday, 7.30pm (except Tuesday September 25, no evening performance), Saturday, 8pm. Matinee performance times: Wednesday, 2.30pm, Saturday, 3.30pm.

Extra matinee performance on Tuesday September 25, 2.30pm

Box office: 0161 833 9833 or