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News: Live Theatre’s March to August 2020 season now on sale

Live Theatre’s March to August 2020 season now on sale

Highlights include Elevator Festival 5, Braids + Cheer Up Slug, a double bill of plays set in County Durham, and the world premiere of Children of the Night, a new play set in Byker and featuring the Music of QFX.

Joe Douglas, Live Theatre’s Artistic Director said: Belonging, home and identity are strong themes this season weaving through some of the finest new writing and new stories that the North East has to offer in 2020. 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, where Theatre is Live!”

March 2020 marks the fifth year of Elevator Festival and showcases seven brand new plays. A key part of Live Elevator (Live Theatre’s Talent Development Programme), Elevator Festival 5 from Wednesday 11 to Saturday 21 March is an unmissable opportunity to share a first look at the future theatre makers of tomorrow. There’s a terrific trio of double bills including Last Seen Bensham Road + Redcoat, Getting Away With It + Dawn and Snatched + Magic Bus. The line-up also features a reading of Faster Than Bolt as well as a great programme of events and workshops.

Live Theatre’s own production Braids + Cheer Up Slug from Thursday 16 to Saturday 25 April is a double bill of debut plays from former Live Theatre Associate Artists, about growing up in County Durham. Braids by Olivia Hannah is about a new friendship that ignites a search for belonging and Cheer Up Slug by Tamsin Daisy Rees is about a childhood friendship tested by the pressures of growing up.

This summer, Live Theatre are proud to bring their World premiere of Children of the Night, a new play set in 1990’s Byker and featuring new music from happy hardcore legends QFX. Children of the Night is written by Lee Mattinson from an original idea by local actress Christina Berriman Dawson.  Christina has brought QFX onboard to write brand new music for the production and will co-direct and star in the show. The story is a quest through the streets of the Wall, as two kids knock door to door and try to find their best mate, who has gone missing. Originally showcased at Elevator Festival in 2018 and featuring choreography from Southpaw Dance Company’s Robby Graham, this production showing from Thursday 18 June to Saturday 11 July will celebrate community and get the party started.

The season showcases North East talent on Sunday 17 May with a selection of ten-minute plays in 10 Minutes to…Call Home. A vital part of Live Elevator, Live Theatre’s artist development programme, the plays presented will be from an open call out. The following month on Friday 5 and Saturday 6 June brings A Way Home, a new play written by Christina Castling, rooted in the stories and memories of people living in Category D villages in County Durham. With humour, tenderness and not a small amount of grit it tells a story just as relevant today as it was 70 years ago.

Shortlisted for the Emerge Performance Prize, Where to Belong on Tuesday 23 & Wednesday 24 June asks what makes a home and what belonging means in a tender moving hour of storytelling, multimedia and future planning.

Live Theatre also has some cracking comedy shows to enjoy too. New stand up show, Slutty Little Goldfish on Friday 29 May, stars award winning actress and comedian Rachel Jackson. Rachel is the star of films such as Beats and The Party’s Just Beginning, and the Sunday Mail have hailed her as ‘Light years beyond other comedians’.  All-female theatre company Your Aunt Fanny are back from Thursday 23 to Saturday 25 July with what promises to be another sell out hit, Muff Said. This comedy sketch show celebrates all things fabulous, ridiculous and thoroughly inappropriate.

Members of Live Youth Theatre showcase their incredible talents this season as they share untold stories in a chaotic three-day weekender of performances celebrating the climax of Live Youth Theatre’s 21st birthday in Time to Take a Stand from Friday 3 to Sunday 5 April. Their improv comedy show Whose Live is it Anyway? promises an hour of long stop laughs – unplanned, unscripted and hilarious.

The achievements of graduating students from Northumbria University’s Drama degree are celebrated in the BA Showcase Performance on Thursday 21 and Saturday 23 May. 

The visiting line-up of shows also includes: Seeds, a story of two mothers united in grief on Tuesday 3 and Wednesday 4 March; the powerful one-man performance Far Gone on Friday 1 and Saturday 2 May, bittersweet comedy One Jewish Boy on Thursday 14 and Friday 15 May and high voltage Mugabe, My Dad & Me on Tuesday 2 and Wednesday 3 June.

The new season provides a number of opportunities to get involved in Live Theatre through a number of creative opportunities including Live Youth Theatre, Live Tales workshops, bursaries and script submissions. Live Theatre makes new plays, develop artists and create great shows and look forward to welcoming new and existing audiences to some of the finest new writing and new stories that the North East has to offer in 2020.

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

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