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24/08/2020

News: Darlington Hippodrome to Re-open

HIPP HIPP HOORAY! 
Darlington Hippodrome to Re-open

After nearly six months of closure due to the Covid-19 outbreak, Darlington Hippodrome
will be re-opening its doors to visitors from Monday 7 September.

On Monday 7 September Darlington Hippodrome will re-open marking the start of a season of socially-distanced activities for people of all ages to enjoy.

Activities will include regular dance and fitness sessions, a book group session, drawing
workshops, quizzes and theatre tours including some ghost tours for those who feel brave enough.

Future activities will include classic film screenings in the theatre auditorium. The theatre’s gallery spaces will be accessible to the public from 10am to 2pm Monday to Saturday and the venue’s box office and Hippo Lounge will be open from 10am to 2pm Monday to Saturday and thirty minutes before each ticketed event.

Councillor Andy Keir said “It is great news for the town that Darlington Hippodrome will be opening its doors and welcoming visitors from September. The Hippodrome is the beating heart of the town’s cultural programme and I am delighted that the venue will soon be buzzing with activity and creativity once more.”

Visitors to the Hippodrome can be assured that all possible measures have been put in place to make a trip to the Hippodrome safe and enjoyable. Capacity at all events will be restricted so it is advised to book as soon as possible.

For full details of all the events taking place in September please visit
www.darlingtonhippodrome.co.uk or call the box office on 01325 405405

21/08/2020

News: Tyne Theatre Musical Fundraiser

Tyne Theatre Musical Fundraiser

Tyne Theatre & Opera House are streaming An Evening of Musicals, straight from their stage to your homes, on Sunday 23rd August from 7:30pm.

Since 2015, Tyne Theatre Productions has produced eight musicals, with it’s ninth production ‘Rent‘ scheduled for 2021. These performances, produced by a group of volunteers, have all raised funds to support the ongoing maintenance of our Grade 1 listed building.

Hosted by Dave Johns (I, Daniel Blake), this live streamed show will include performances of some of the greatest songs from musicals including; Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, Little Shop of Horrors, Pirates of Penzance, Oklahoma, Sweeney Todd & more!

You can stream the event on Facebook Live or YouTube: bit.ly/TTAOHyoutube

The the event is free to stream, but the theatre are asking for donations to help secure its future: paypal.me/ttohpt (please uncheck the ‘paying for goods and services’ box).

20/08/2020

News: Good news for Stockton as arts centre announces reopening plans

Good news for Stockton as arts centre announces reopening plans

ARC in Stockton have announced plans that will see the arts centre reopen their doors to the public from Monday 7 September.



The programme will include film screenings in the venue’s cinema, lots of creative activities for adults and young people to take part in, and an exhibition of work created by the people of Stockton and beyond during lockdown.

Tai Chi Workshop
The team at ARC have curated an enticing selection of films as they prepare to turn their projector back on, including Bong Joon-ho’s Oscar-winning Parasite, and David Attenborough’s big-screen climate change documentary A Life on Our Planet. Families can also look forward to discounted screenings suitable for younger audiences every Saturday morning. Daniel Mitchelson, who is responsible for choosing the films that ARC screens said “During lockdown I've caught up on films I missed when they first came out, but it hasn't been quite the same as seeing them on the big screen. That's why I'm really pleased that we can now announce what we have lined up for September. Opening our doors in a safe way is our top priority and we have introduced new seating plans that maintain social distancing, as well as etickets which you can receive via email and simply need to show on your phone when arriving.”

By temporarily removing the seats from ARC’s Theatre the venue is able to restart regular workshops and classes whilst meeting social distancing guidance. ARC’s activity for young people focuses on those who have least opportunity to take part through programmes such as We Are TS18, More Stuff Like This Please, All In Youth and Kaos Kids.

Sessions for over 50s including arts and crafts, ballet pilates, ukulele, tai chi and gentle exercise will also be relocacting to the Theatre. Sonya Curle, Creative Programmes Manager said “We know how much people value coming to ARC to learn from artists, make friends, and stay active. Lots of people have turned to arts activity during lockdown as a way of sharing their experience and staying active and healthy. The return of our workshops and classes is the perfect opportunity for people to reconnect socially in a safe environment and enjoy being creative together.”

ARC’s new exhibition will feature work produced as part of the We ARConnected programme. During lockdown, people were invited to submit artwork created in response to a new theme every fortnight as way of documenting their experiences. The exhibition will celebrate the creativity of communities across the Tees Valley and beyond.

In order to reopen the team at ARC have been making careful plans to ensure their building remains COVID-secure. Measures that the venue have already confirmed will be in place include floor markings and one-way systems, a stricter cleaning schedule, hand sanitiser stations, and socially distanced seating in the cinema and their cafe bar, No 60. E-tickets are also being introduced which are emailed directly to customers upon booking and can be displayed on smart phone screen.

Updated information about ARC’s reopening can be found on their website, www.arconline.co.uk

Opening times
ARC’s building will reopen on Monday 7 September at 10am in line with our revised opening times.

New opening times will be:
Mon 10am - 4pm
Tues 10am - 7pm
Wed - Sat 10am - 10pm
Sun - Closed

What’s On?
Workshops and classes

• Silver Tai Chi Beginners - Mondays at 12.30pm
• Silver Tai Chi Intermediates - Mondays at 2pm
• Silver Shapers - Tuesdays at 10.30am (online)
• Silver Ballet Pilates - Tuesdays at 12pm
• Silver Creative Writing - Tuesdays at 10am (online)
• Silver Creative Arts and Crafts at 10.30am
• Silver ARCulele - Fridays at 1pm (online until Friday 11 September, then in person)
• ARC Film Making - Saturdays at 11am

Cinema
• Military Wives (12A)
o Wed 9 Sep 2pm
o Thu 10 Sep 7.30pm
o Sat 12 Sep 2pm
o Wed 16 Sep 7.30pm
o Thu 17 Sep 2pm

• Parasite (18)
o Wed 9 Sep 7.30pm
o Thu 10 Sep 2pm
o Fri 11 Sep 7.30pm

• Emma (U)
o Sat 12 Sep 7.30pm
o Wed 16 Sep 2pm
o Thu 17 Sep 7.30pm

• Call of the Wild (PG)
o Sat 12 Sep 11am
o Sat 19 Sep 11am

• Portrait of a Lady on Fire (15)
o Fri 18 Sep 7.30pm
o Sat 19 Sep 2pm
o Wed 23 Sep 7.30pm
o Thu 24 Sep 2pm

• Love Sarah (12A)
o Sat 19 Sep 7.30pm
o Wed 23 Sep 2pm
o Thu 24 Sep 7.30pm

• Stage Mother (15)
o Fri 25 Sep 7.30pm
o Sat 26 Sep 2pm
o Wed 30 Sep 7.30pm
o Thu 1 Oct 2pm

• The Truth (PG)
o Sat 26 Sep 7.30pm
o Wed 30 Sep 2pm
o Thu 1 Oct 7.30pm

• David Attenborough: A Life on Our Planet
o Fri 2 Oct 7.30pm
o Sat 3 Oct 2pm

• Onward (U)
o Sat 26 Sep 11am
o Sat 3 Oct 11am

News: Darlington Based Youth Project Needs Your Votes For A Share Of £1Million Fund


Darlington Based Youth Project Needs Your Votes For A Share Of £1Million Fund

The Darlington based In2 Project is on the shortlist to win a share of Persimmon Homes’ Building Futures £1million pot supporting under-18s nationwide.

Pupils experiencing the power of
music as part of the In2 Project
The aims of the In2 Project are to help build confidence, foster aspiration and improve general health and wellbeing by opening up access to cultural and sporting activities for pupils in some of the most deprived wards in the area.

As the home of the In2 Project Darlington Hippodrome has hosted sessions with musicians, circus performers, actors, theatre producers and even inventors over the last year.

Persimmon Homes North East is backing the In2 project to be a prize winner at a gala dinner in October, where cash awards of £100,000, £50,000 or £20,000 will be made to those projects winning the most online votes.

Councillor Andy Keir representing the In2 Project said “it is a huge achievement to have been selected as a regional finalist, but now we really need people to get behind us and get voting so that we are in the strongest possible position to earn one of the top three cash awards on the night.”

Councillor Keir added “Voting could not be simpler. Just log on to www.persimmonhomes.com/building-futures/ and select the In2 Project and vote for us. We would really appreciate everyone’s support.”

Building Futures is being delivered through the Persimmon Charitable Foundation. Through the scheme, a total of 128 grants of £1,000 have been awarded to groups supporting sport, education & arts and health across Persimmon’s 31 regional businesses and its head office.

Online voting opened on 27 July and will close at midnight on 18 September 2020.

News: Award for volunteers at Little Theatre Gateshead

Award for volunteers at Little Theatre Gateshead

Volunteers at Little Theatre Gateshead have been awarded an EMCEE 2020 award for their fundraising efforts to create a new rehearsal space at their unique venue opposite Saltwell Park, Gateshead.

The EMCEEs 2020 is the UK arts, culture and heritage sector’s chance to celebrate fundraising success. The awards are run through the National Arts Fundraising School, London and were created to recognise excellence in arts and culture fundraising.

The award was in the category: Best Major Fundraising Campaign over £100,000 and winners show strong evidence of having a supporter-centred approach, a strong underlying strategy and an innovative or creative approach.

Built in 1943 Little Theatre was the only theatre in the UK built during World War 2 due to the generosity of the Dodds Family, in particular Ruth, Hope and Sylvia Dodds. The Little Theatre Gateshead is a registered charity (510742) and is not regularly funded by public or private funds so the capital appeal for funding was a ‘one off’ appeal for help to create a new rehearsal room equal in size to the main stage. Progressive Players Gateshead present 10 shows per year at Little Theatre Gateshead and annual audiences number 12,000.

Bernard Ross, Director of the National Arts Fundraising School said: “In a tough category this was a standout application. All the judges agreed this was a fabulous example of what volunteers can do. And an inspiration to professionals!”

Little Theatre Gateshead volunteers were represented by their bid writer Gill Adams at an online, digital ceremony last night. In an acceptance speech Gill Adams said:
“It’s a huge pleasure to be working on the capital appeal to raise funds for a new rehearsal space at Little Theatre. The award is all the more special since, due to the Covid-19 lockdown, the theatre has been temporarily closed since mid-March. We take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to all of the funders who have supported us this far and send a plea to any other funders out there who can help us raise the last few thousand so that when we reopen it will be with the addition of a new rehearsal space!”

Robbie Carruthers, Chair of Trustees at Little Theatre explained: “As a volunteer organisation with no regular public or private funding we were thrilled to be almost at our target, we only need another £30,000 so it was much appreciated that a representative at Arts Council England nominated Little Theatre Gateshead for the EMCEE 2020 award to celebrate our fundraising efforts so far.”

“The new rehearsal space will be a huge benefit to the volunteer actors, our partners, the Progressive Players Gateshead and the other community groups who perform and rehearse at Little Theatre. Participants will be able to rehearse in a space that will be equal in size to the main stage which will be a major bonus when rehearsing, particularly the larger cast plays, and we can’t wait to reach our target and complete this capital project.”

Bid writer Gill Adams added: “This award is testament to the tenacity of the fundraising team at Little Theatre. So if any funders out there can help us by contributing to the remaining amount, please contact me through the Theatre website www.littletheatregateshead.co.uk Thank you!”

14/08/2020

News: Darlington Hippodrome’s Spectacular Festive Pantomime Moved To 2021


Darlington Hippodrome’s Spectacular Festive Pantomime Moved To 2021

You shall go to the ball! But not until 2021 as Darlington Hippodrome along with producers Qdos Entertainment take the decision to move the 2020/2021 pantomime back a year due to COVID-19.

Due to the continuing uncertainty around when theatres will be able to re-open without social distancing, Darlington Hippodrome have taken the decision, alongside their colleagues at Qdos Entertainment, to postpone the 2020/2021 pantomime Cinderella into 2021.

Photo:  Scott Akoz
Programming and Development Director Heather Tarran-Jones says “Pantomime is one of the most exciting times of year here at the Hippodrome and we’ll miss seeing theatregoers of all ages enjoying what is always a highly-entertaining festive treat. But we now look forward to welcoming everyone back in 2021 for what promises to be a spectacular return for our famous panto.”

Councillor Andy Keir says “Pantomime has been integral part of the Darlington Hippodrome programme since its very early days. It’s unfortunate but necessary that it’s postponed this year, but we look forward to welcoming it back bigger and better than ever next year”.

During the Hippodrome’s closure period, Hippodrome staff have greatly appreciated the support and patience displayed by customers as they face a difficult and complex period with a reduced team. Cinderella ticket holders will be contacted as soon as possible with details on how they can move their 2020/2021 tickets into 2021. In the meantime, if customers prefer a full refund, then can contact the theatre on 01325 405 405 (Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm) or email hippodrome.boxoffice@darlington.gov.uk.

13/08/2020

News: Soho Theatre Announces Film Of Hit Play Typical Starring Richard Blackwood


Soho Theatre Announces Film Of
Hit Play Typical Starring Richard Blackwood



Typical
A Soho Theatre And Nouveau Riche Production

By Ryan Calais Cameron
Directed By Anastasia Osei-Kuffour
Starring Richard Blackwood

Where is home?
Thought I was home
I fought then came home
Thought I was home....

A powerful and urgent exploration about how society stereotypes Black masculinity is the subject of a brand-new film created by award-winning creative movement Nouveau Riche and Soho Theatre, London’s leading producer of new theatre, comedy and cabaret.

Photo: Franklyn Rodgers
Typical, written by Ryan Calais Cameron, initially directed for the stage and now for the screen by Anastasia Osei-Kuffour, uncovers the man and the humanity behind the tragic real-life story of Christopher Alder, a Black British ex-serviceman.

First performed in 2019 at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe before the hit play transferred to Soho Theatre for a sell-out run, this work has been revived to be filmed during the Covid-19 outbreak and shot adhering to social distancing guidelines, on location at Soho Theatre.

Hollyoaks regular and former EastEnders star Richard Blackwood reprises the critically acclaimed part he played in Typical, the stage version. The versatile actor has a career that spans 30 years across stage and screen and was the first Black comic to have his own TV show in the UK. For Typical, he delivers an intense, multi-rolling monologue, that is at times both harrowing and darkly comedic. The tragic storyline highlights the crisis of identity consuming Britain today and how little progress has been made in race relations in the twenty years since Christopher’s story emerged.

Photo: Franklyn Rodgers
Playwright Ryan Calais Cameron says: “Typical is the story of a Black man that is just a man when he is in the comfort of his home, but as he leaves, he must navigate through society’s ideas and prejudices about what it means to be Black.

“I believe this play is vital and should be seen as widely as possible, particularly now given the far overdue global fight for freedom, justice and liberation from overt, covert, and systemic racism. Typical is a slice of our history, that hopes to give insight, education and hope for a better future.”

Soho Theatre’s Creative Director David Luff adds: “Ryan Calais Cameron is a superb new writer and in Typical has created a piece which deals respectfully with past tragic events whilst shining a bright spotlight on injustice in contemporary British society. We first met Ryan on our Writers’ Lab programme, before watching his superb hit production of Queens of Sheba. On reading Typical, we knew straight away that this was a piece that needed to be produced. We were completely taken by the power, beauty and lyricism of Ryan’s writing and supported him in mounting the show in Edinburgh and London.

Photo: Franklyn Rodgers
“The process of adapting the play for screen in this Covid-19 period has been challenging but hugely rewarding, bringing together a superb team of theatre and film creatives. We are extremely proud to have co-produced this new filmed version at Soho Theatre and eager for it to find a wide audience.”

*A percentage of the proceeds from this film will be donated to Janet Alder, Christopher’s sister, who is raising funds to write a book about his story. This film is dedicated to his memory and the many Black men and women whose lives have been destroyed by racism in our society.

From the director Anastasia Osei-Kuffour: “It was so heart-breaking to see that even in a global pandemic racism is still raging, the killing of Black people by police and the fact that the virus disproportionately affected us people of colour more — because of the societal inequalities that racism has engineered — is so hard to stomach. Reviving Typical is part of our protest and fight against the wrong going on in the world, a way we as a team are taking action.

“Shooting this as a film, we are hoping it can reach thousands more than our theatre production did, because there needs to be greater awareness of our own incidents of racism, injustice and police misconduct , problems that we need to tackle here in the UK. I am praying that greater awareness helps us along the way to stamping out racism and injustice here, as people are more held to account for their behaviour. Black Lives Matter, Christopher Alder’s life matters, Typical highlights this.”

Typical is currently in post-production. Further announcements detailing the film’s release will be made very soon.


Creative and Production Team
Writer                                               Ryan Calais Cameron
Director                                            Anastasia Osei-Kuffour
Actor                                                Richard Blackwood
Producer                                          Charlotte Campbell
Producer                                          Gabrielle Leadbetter
Executive Producer                         David Luff
Executive Producer                         Ryan Calais Cameron
Cinematographer                            Jermaine Edwards                           
Editor                                               Oral Norrie Ottey
Assistant Editor                               Robert Cone
Set and Costume Designer            Zahra Mansouri  
Sound Designer                              Gareth Fry  
Original Stage Sound Designer      Duramaney Kamara                                        
Lighting Designer                            Paul Anderson   
Lighting Programmer                       Laurence Russell
Original Stage Lighting Designer    Sorcha Stott-Strzala                               
Voice and Dialect Coach                Hazel Holder
Drama Therapist                             Wabriya King
Movement Director                          Coral Messam
Original Stage Movement Director  Ingrid Mackinnon
Fight Director                                   Kevin McCurdy
Assistant Director                            Jessica Mensah                                
Production Manager                        Sebastian Cannings                                    
Stage Manager                                Sylvia Darkwa-Ohemeng
Make Up Designer                           Ruth McGinty                                    
Casting Director                               Nadine Rennie                    
Camera Operator B Camera            Sean Francis
Camera Operator C Camera            Anna MacDonald
Focus Puller A Camera                    Tim Potter
Focus Puller B Camera                    Marco Alonso
Focus Puller C Camera                    Emma Friend
2nd AC                                              Jean Ash
DIT                                                   John Miguel King
Stills Photographer                           Franklyn Rodgers
Lighting Equipment                          Sparks Theatrical Hire Ltd.
Colourist                                          John Miguel King
Digital Imaging Services                  Digital Orchard
Music Clearance                              Laura Rouxel
Soho Technician                              Kevin Millband
Soho Technician                              Georgina Trott

07/08/2020

News: Northern Stage appoints Natalie Ibu as Artistic Director

 Northern Stage appoints Natalie Ibu as Artistic Director

Northern Stage today announced the appointment of Natalie Ibu as their new Artistic Director and Joint Chief Executive. Natalie, currently Artistic Director and Chief Executive of tiata fahodzi, will take up the role in November 2020. She succeeds Lorne Campbell, who joined National Theatre of Wales in March. 
Natalie Ibu Photo: Mathieu Ajan
Natalie Ibu has been Artistic Director and Chief Executive of tiata fahodzi, the only Black-led theatre company committed solely to producing new work in the UK, for the past 5 years. At tiata fahodzi, Natalie’s stand out piece of work was her direction of ‘good dog’ by ArinzĂ© Kene, which was produced in association with Watford Palace Theatre and Tara Finney Productions and toured nationally twice to excellent audience and critical reception before being adapted for screen and shown on BBC iPlayer. 
Prior to joining tiata fahodzi, her career includes time spent as Creative Producer at In Good Company, Derby Theatre; Programme Manager, Roundhouse; Resident Assistant Director, Royal Court and Assistant Director Glasgow Citizens Theatre.  
Natalie is devoted to artist development with a strong record in nurturing new talent, evidenced in her roles as consortium lead of the Artistic Director Leadership Programme and Trustee of the Regional Theatre Young Director Scheme.  She has a history of working with youth theatre and is passionate about working with local communities to ensure that work can be created in collaboration, to reflect the lived experience, hopes and ideas of the widest society. Natalie is a Fellow of the International Society of Performing Arts (ISPA).  
Chair of Northern Stage’s Board Simon Elliott said, “The time the panel spent reviewing nearly 60 applications and meeting many candidates in interview showed us all the high quality of the sector, both nationally and regionally.  Natalie emerged as the most compelling candidate from a high calibre field because we saw her as visionary, know that she understands and embraces the social responsibilities of theatre and is committed to developing talent.  Her track record is excellent and with her creative leadership I am confident she will enable us to ensure Northern Stage can be the theatre the region needs now and in the years to come.  
“Appointing an Artistic Director at this time is absolutely necessary.  We have an obligation to all the communities of Newcastle and the North East to create, develop and curate the most exciting, engaging and relevant theatre, so that when audiences, staff, theatre makers and participants feel safe, we can be there.  Natalie, working alongside Joint Chief Executive Kate Denby and with the entire team, will imagine and realise that future. 
“And last but not least, I want to acknowledge the brilliant work by Kate who has had to be our sole Chief Executive in this most challenging period – and the whole Northern Stage Staff and the freelance community we work with for all they have done in the last 5 months.  I know that as Natalie takes up the role of Artistic Director and Joint Chief Executive, she will work collaboratively to create the possibilities of a better tomorrow.” 

Natalie Ibu said, “As a 17 year old Black Scottish working class girl, I decided I wanted to be an Artistic Director because I longed to work in community – with a team, with artists, with a place and with audiences. Northern Stage is exemplary at this with its commitment to its local and regional community – from Wednesday shared dinners with its neighbours in Byker to the way it shares its building with local artists through the Spare Room programme. I am looking forward to working with the people and places across Tyne and Wear and beyond — where grit joins charm, where a spectrum of celebrations meet at the weekend and where the global is becoming our local – to make loudly relevant work that feels essential to helping us understand who we are, who we’ll be and who we want to be. I know first-hand the game-changing impact a venue like Northern Stage can have on individuals — artists and audiences alike - and it’s an absolute privilege to join this organisation as it continues to emerge as a beacon in these complex times. 

Northern Stage’s Executive Director Kate Denby said, "I'm thrilled to welcome Natalie to Northern Stage as our new Artistic Director. Natalie and I had the opportunity to work together several years ago, and I've followed her career in the years since.  I'm very excited to now build a partnership as we lead Northern Stage into the future." 

The tiata fahodzi Board of Trustees said, “The Board of Trustees and everyone at tiata fahodzi would like to congratulate Natalie on her new role and thank her for the inspiring work she has done as Artistic Director of our organisation over the past six years. From spearheading a new approach to audience engagement with the innovative Friendship Model, to championing inclusive imagery with The Stage photo campaign, Natalie has demonstrated time and again that her creative vision knows no bounds. At the heart of tiata fahodzi is our mission to help create a richer, more multiple mainstream theatre culture and as Artistic Director Natalie has pushed that agenda forward with thought-provoking productions and ground-breaking initiatives that will benefit the sector for years to come. We have no doubt Natalie will take the same unwavering drive and passion with her to Northern Stage and wish her the very best.”

04/08/2020

News: The Customs House has taken the difficult decision to postpone its pantomime

The Little Panto With The Broken Heart

The Customs House, in South Shields, has taken the difficult decision to postpone its pantomime.

Rapunzel, which was due to open in November, will now be rescheduled to let down her hair in 2021.

Ray Spencer MBE
Customs House Executive Director Ray Spencer exlpained “With the continued uncertainty around government advice on live performance and with a predicted second wave of Covid this winter, it is with deep regret that The Customs House is announcing the postponement of our 2020 pantomime “Rapunzel” until 2021.

“After months of closure and no clear road map to reopening The Customs House cannot risk the heavy investment required to produce pantomime without some guarantee that we would be able to at least recoup costs.

“All advance ticket sales are now available for refund - please be patient as our skeleton staff work through the high number of bookings.

Happier times - The Customs House panto has won the North East Theatre Guide's "Most Entertaining Panto of the Year a record three times.

“We are refunding tickets rather than transferring them to next year’s dates, with a new performance diary for 2021 being produced soon. As normal these new dates will be offered to Members of our Friends Scheme in advance of them going on general public sale.

“These are extremely difficult times for everyone so I would ask, if you are able, to consider donating part of your ticket refund to The Customs House Charity.

“You remain our greatest asset, our supporters, it is you who will help secure a positive future for YOUR Customs House.

“We will return! OH, YES WE WILLL!”

An email has been sent to all bookers outlining their options for a refund or opportunities to donate part of their transaction to The Customs House Charity.

Those who do not have an email address attached to their booking will receive a call from staff who are working through each show. Customers will be notified when refunds have been processed.

Staff are currently working remotely and are not in the building. They are working hard to contact ticket holders as swiftly as possible, however, if you have not heard from anyone by Saturday 4th September, please email boxoffice@customshouse.co.uk or send a letter to The Customs House, Mill Dam, South Shields, NE33 1ES.


03/08/2020

Preview: Jess Fostekew: Hench at Newcastle Stand


Little Wander Present

Jess Fostekew: Hench
Newcastle Stand Comedy Club
Monday 8th March 2021

Please note show rescheduled from 17 October 2020
Photo: Idil Sukan

Absolute powershed and regular host of The Guilty FeministJessica Fostekew explores her big strong strength.

Have you ever watched a feminist try and take ‘hench’ as a compliment? It’s like watching a snake eat but funny.
In preview, Hench was nominated for Best Show at the Leicester Comedy Festival.
You’ve seen Jess in BBC sitcoms Motherland and Cuckoo and BAFTA Award-winning drama Three Girls.
She's also in forthcoming feature films: Gavin Hood’s Official Secrets and Michael Winterbottom’s Greed. She writes for 8 out of 10 Cats.

Best Show Dave Comedy Award Nominee 2019
‘She finds a new fiercely funny strain of comedy that’s her own’ Times
'Consistently hilarious' Fest
'Wears her smarts on her sleeve, great' Guardian

***** Funny Women
**** Times
**** Guardian
**** Herald
**** Scotsman
**** Chortle
**** Skinny
**** Fest


Preview: Jen Brister: Under Privilege at Newcastle Stand


Jen Brister: Under Privilege
Newcastle Stand Comedy Club
Monday 22nd February 2021

Please note show resheduled from 8 September 2020


Brister has it all: a wife, kids, a house and a job she loves (sometimes) so what the hell is she moaning about? Join Jen as she takes an irreverent look at the often controversial subject of 'privilege'. Who has it? Who doesn't? And why does no one like to admit they have any?

'A powerhouse performance' ****½ Chortle
'A big dose of double up funny' ***** Deadline News
'Glorious raging' **** BroadwayBaby
'Brister uses anger to quite stunning comedic effect' ***** Skinny
'Blisteringly funny' **** List


Preview: My Best Friend’s Wedding at Sunderland Empire

Ad: Tickets are now available from our affiliate ATG Tickets. This means we receive a small share of the sale. Clicking on these links helps us to cover the costs of producing the North East Theatre Guide free of charge to both our readers and theatres.

The smash-hit 90s movie My Best Friend’s Wedding is now a brand new musical comedy and you’re invited!

My Best Friend’s Wedding
Sunderland Empire
Tuesday 28 September - Saturday 2 October 2021

Tickets now on sale: TICKET LINK #Ad



Fiery food critic Julianne Potter has always turned her nose up at romance. It’s the reason she broke up with her sweetheart Michael O’Neal. When she hears he’s about to be married, she vows to win him back for good, but with perfect Kimmy in the way, it’s not as easy as she first thought. Can she derail her best friend’s wedding in time and keep Michael all for herself?

Starring Alexandra Burke (The Bodyguard, Chicago, Sister Act), with book by Ronald Bass (My Best Friend’s Wedding, Rain Man, The Joy Luck Club) and Jonathan Harvey (Beautiful Thing, Gimme Gimme Gimme, Coronation Street), My Best Friend’s Wedding features some of the most iconic songs ever written by the legendary Burt Bacharach and Hal David, including I’ll Never Fall in Love Again, I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself, Walk on By, I Say A Little Prayer, What’s New Pussycat and many, many more.

Come along and watch it all unfold as this wickedly funny musical rom com is brought to life in a new stage production.

Tickets now on sale: TICKET LINK #Ad