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Preview: Live Theatre announces its new season

Live Theatre announces its new season
Joe Douglas, Artistic Director, Live Theatre introduces the season by saying: “Our new season is bursting with Live Theatre’s own productions, shows created through our comprehensive Artist Development programme and some of the finest new plays touring the UK. At Live Theatre we aim to entertain and give audiences a fresh take on the world around them, so come join us by the Quayside... Theatre is Live!" 

Sell out Live Theatre hit Clear White Light returns
Live Theatre’s sold-out hit show of 2018, Clear White Light, a gothic musical inspired by Alan Hull’s time working at St. Nick’s psychiatric hospital in Gosforth, returns by popular demand from Thursday 19 September - Saturday 12 October. Charlie Hardwick, Joe Caffrey, and many of the original cast reprise their roles performing some of Lindisfarne’s most popular hit songs, played live on stage by Ray Laidlaw and Billy Mitchell of the band. This hard-hitting play explores mental health and coincides with the 150th birthday of St. Nick’s Hospital in Gosforth, where the play is set.

Joe Douglas, Artistic Director
Two special events accompany Clear White Light this autumn. In the first of a series of Live Icons Talks, at 4pm on Sunday 22 September, actor Charlie Hardwick, lead in Clear White Light and former Emmerdale regular joins Live Theatre's Artistic Director, Joe Douglas for a conversation about her relationship with the theatre and some of her favourite roles.

Former Lindisfarne band members Ray Laidlaw and Billy Mitchell bring their show, The Lindisfarne Story which celebrates Tyneside's favourite group through anecdotes, rare video and unseen photographs, and of course many of their hits played live. The Lindisfarne Story is at 8pm on Sunday 29 September & Sunday 6 October, following the 4pm performances of Clear White Light.

Ask Me Anything back for a full show

Following its fantastic previews The Paper Birds and Live Theatre co-production Ask Me Anything returns to Live Theatre from Thursday 30 January - Saturday 8 February 2020 ahead its national tour. This immersive theatrical experience with live music, mischief and mayhem explores what different generations can teach each other. 

The Mark Thomas Project

Mark Thomas
Comedian, activist and one of the UK's most irreverent, satirical and popular performers, Mark Thomas, takes over Live Theatre for four days of workshops, talks, interventions and performances from Thursday 14 - Sunday 17 November as he becomes one of Live Theatre's new Associate Artists. Mark will present three shows, including A Lecture – Don’t Tell ‘Em It’s Theatre reflecting on his career, a new work in progress 50 Things About Us looking at national identity, and The Manifesto in which he creates a People’s Manifesto with the audience. He will also mark the first anniversary of the UN Special Rapporteur’s enquiry into poverty in the UK with Reading the Report, and hold a Public Conversation on Child Poverty.

Edinburgh Fringe Hit Shows
Direct from the Edinburgh Fringe, are a number of Edinburgh hit show shows hand selected to come to Live Theatre’s stage.
Based on Cora Bissett's teenage diaries, What Girls Are Made Of comes to Live Theatre from Wednesday 4 - Friday 6 September direct from its second Edinburgh Fringe run. The play charts the true story of her rollercoaster journey from 90s indie-kid hopeful to wised-up woman featuring a killer set list.
Having won awards at both the Edinburgh Fringe and Adelaide Fringe, powerful and uplifting play about triumph over adversity Build A Rocket comes to Live Theatre from Wednesday 2 - Saturday 5 October. Yasmin is a bright 16 year old from a small seaside town. In an instant, her world is turned upside down when she becomes pregnant. Can the thing that threatens to ruin her life actually be the thing that saves her?
Trojan Horse following the real-life stories of Muslim teachers and governors who were accused of plotting extremism in Birmingham schools, a local story that hit the national news, comes to Live Theatre from Tuesday 15 & Wednesday 16 October. Adapted from the testimonies of those at the heart of the UK Government’s inquiry, critically acclaimed theatre company LUNG (who brought The 56 to Live Theatre in 2016) investigate what really happened. Live Urdu translation is available on both performances. A discussion with Prof. John Holmwood, one of the expert witnesses in the Trojan Horse case, joined by a panel of experts, will take place after the show each night.

It's True, It's True, It's True, tells the story of how a woman took revenge through her art to become one of the most successful painters of her generations on Tuesday 22 & Wednesday 23 October.  Based on surviving transcripts, the play dramatises the 1612 trial of Agostino Tassi for the rape of baroque painter Artemesia Gentileschi and was a run-away success at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2018.

The Political History of Smack And Crack, an angry, funny love song to a lost generation, chronicling the fallout for communities crushed by the heroin epidemic at the height of Thatcherism comes to Live Theatre on Tuesday 11 & Wednesday 12 February 2020.

Have an Alternative Christmas at Live Theatre

Live Theatre has a two alternative Christmas shows, for ages 14 upwards this year. Bonnie & Fanny's Christmas Spectacular is night full to the brim with festive frolics from side-splitting sketch troupe, Your Aunt Fanny and glitter throwing drag trio, Bonnie and The Bonnettes from Thursday 12 - Saturday 14 December. 
Infamous cult comedy quiz show, Mixtape is back with a stocking load of new Christmas sketches and a mash up of Mixtape favourites from throughout the eras for four nights from Wednesday 18 - Saturday 21 December. Live Theatre has supported the artists involved in creating both shows through its artist development programme, and all-female comedy group Your Aunt Fanny started life at Live Youth Theatre.

Both shows will made great Christmas party night out. Live Theatre’s events team can arrange for pre-show drinks and a buffet, and interval refreshments in one of Live Theatre’s historic rooms, and tickets to see one of the Christmas shows, creating a unique festive night out for groups of friends or colleagues.

Other Visiting Theatre Shows
Terror From The Skies, on Friday 20 & Saturday 21 September is a new show, told through storytelling, about society, friendship and the things we hold dear about the places we live, and part of the Bridging The Gap bursary and regional tour.

Northumbria University MA Theatre & Performance Students present their Final Showcase on Friday 27 & Saturday 28 September, as part of the creative partnership between Live Theatre, and Northumbria University

Under Three Moons on Friday 25 & Saturday 26 October about friendship and growing up arrives, is a new play from Box Of Tricks, the same company that brought hit play Sparkplug to Live Theatre in the spring.

Following its preview in Elevator Festival 2018, Nuclear Future, returns on Friday 25 October to shine a light on how one person's actions can lead to catastrophe for the whole planet.

McGonagall's Chronicles, written and performed by Gary McNair and directed by Live Theatre Artistic Director Joe Douglas, on Wednesday 6 & Thursday 7 November honours the late great Dundonian Poet, Sir William Topaz with bad verse and terrible rhymes.

One Under by award winning writer, Winsome Pinnock on Tuesday 12 & Wednesday 13 November is an evocative play about the power of guilt and the quest for atonement, in a new version from acclaimed theatre company Graeae.

Returning to Live Theatre for one night only before starting its international tour is Gypsy Queen, the unconventional love story between two fighters on Wednesday 20 November. 
Live Theatre’s festival of up and coming talent, Elevator Festival, returns from Wednesday 11 to Saturday 11 March 2020, showcasing some of the best new theatre.

Other Events
Live Theatre opens its doors, and behind the scenes on Sunday 22 September for Heritage Open Day Tours, which are free, but booking essential.

Author Ann Cleeves, creator of TV detective Vera is in discussion in Tea Talks, presented by NE14.TV on Saturday 7 December.

Live Theatre extends its popular Live Tales sessions to young people under 7s and their families in Live Tales Family Fables workshops on Sunday 27 October, Sunday 15 December & Sunday 16 February 2020 to encourage talent and creativity to develop and flourish at every level.

Open working space, Open Undercroft has been extended to be open every day when the theatre is open. Artists and freelancers are invited to use the historic space on the theatre’s ground floor, and a series of Open Undercroft Talks include with guests from the programme, and about creative opportunities at Live Theatre.

On The Web:
Twitter & Facebook: @LiveTheatre                
Instagram @LiveTheatreNewcastle

The new season of shows and events at Live Theatre are now on sale. For more information and tickets call Live Theatre’s Box Office on (0191) 232 1232 or see

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