WEEKLY ROUND-UP (12.06.23) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image: My Dear Aunty Nell by Rosie Powell

Every week we pull together some of the best events taking place across the region, from music and theatre, to comedy, art and film. Read more on these, and other events, in the June issue of NARC. magazine out now in print and online.

My Dear Aunty Nell
My Dear Aunty Nell is an immersive theatre experience that both celebrates and laments the way in which we experience LGBTQ+ history. The performance aims to shine a light on generations of queer stories that have remained alive solely through the medium of gossip and hearsay. It also poses an important question: how can you grieve someone that isn’t dead?
Wednesday 14th June @ ARC, Stockton

The Becoming
Newcastle-based dance company balletLORENT premieres a short film The Becoming at Tyneside Cinema to celebrate 30 years of one of Newcastle’s most influential contemporary dance companies, and to explore the physical limits and self-discovery of performance.
Wednesday 14th June @ Tyneside Cinema, Newcastle

The Geet Muckle Slam
Spoken word platform Born Lippy present a thrilling battle of words and wit as they bring twelve poets together to go head to head in a (mostly) friendly war of words. Expect high energy performances, superb writing, off the cuff wit and audience participation. There can only be one winner, and YOU decide!
Thursday 15th June @ Northern Stage, Newcastle

Father Unknown
Becoming a parent changes your perspectives on a lot of things, but when you’re still working on your GCSEs there are more than a few priorities that will shift, and fast! This production explores young fatherhood in all of its wonderful, challenging, scary and funny moments. Made in collaboration with young dads at The North East Young Dads And Lads group and Newcastle University, Father Unknown is an honest look at new parenthood, combining a selection of young Dads’ stories, featuring them as writers, interviewers, creators and facilitators.
Thursday 15th-Saturday 17th June @ Gala Theatre, Durham (15th) & Northern Stage, Newcastle (16th-17th)

Image: Eliot Smith Dance – Human

Eliot Smith Dance: Human
What does it mean to be human? This is the question inspiring the Spring season from award-winning dance company Eliot Smith Dance. HUMAN is a collection of contemporary dance solos performed by dancer Yamit Salazar, exploring the beauty, intensity and complexity of human experience.
Thursday 15th June @ Hullabaloo, Darlington (& Sage Gateshead on Friday 23rd)

Just Enough Madness/Burnt Out
Through movement and autobiographical spoken word, Burnt Out sees Glasgow-based dance artist Penny Chivas explore the impact of the devastating Australian bush fires in 2019/20. Known as the Black Summer, this period provides the backdrop for Chivas to deliver a powerful political message about climate change, while giving a voice to the emotional fallout from the trauma suffered by so many. Accompanied by a soundscape of sirens, wildlife and helicopters, Burnt Out is performance as climate activism.
Complimenting Chivas’ performance will be Payal Ramchandani’s Just Enough Madness, which showcases her heritage through South Indian classical dance, Kuchipudi. Aiming to represent the mind through movement, Just Enough Madness uses Indian mythological narratives to tackle contemporary mental health issues. A piece that hopes to change the perceptions of mental health, grief, motherhood and loss, Ramchandani questions our definition of feeling ‘normal’.
Friday 16th June @ Dance City, Newcastle

Arab Strap
Philophobia was the record which was, in Arab Strap’s own words: “where everything started to come together… where sounds and themes began to take shape…”. From Packs of Three’s notorious opening refrains to New Birds’ dramatic emotional catharsis, to the wince-inducing candour of I Would’ve Liked Me A Lot Last Night, not only is Philophobia the nearest thing to a definitive Arab Strap album; it’s also the only one they’ve ever pondered performing in its entirety. Calling at Sage Gateshead on Friday 16th June, Philophobia Undressed will see Moffat and guitarist Malcolm Middleton do just that, stripping these beloved songs down to merely the core duo and their trusty drum machine.
Friday 16th June @ Sage Gateshead

chloé (with an i)
Slugtown proudly presents chloé (with an i)a solo exhibition by Leeds based artist Fern O’Carolan. In her debut European solo presentation, O’Carolan skewers aesthetics of girlhood, adolescent searches for identity and the achy space between knowing everything and knowing nothing.
Taking place from Friday 16th June to Saturday 29th July @ Slugtown, Newcastle

Raul Kohli
Raul Kohli is a name that anyone familiar with Newcastle’s comedy scene should be aware of. The comedian’s act is a confident explosion of ideas, swagger and charm. One of the few Asian comedians to have grown up in the North East, this Geordie comic has a unique perspective on life that he isn’t afraid to quip about in detail. Balancing his cheeky wit with a knack for incisive political comedy, Kohli takes his audience on a journey with his inventive storytelling and endearing charm.
Friday 16th June @ Bishop Auckland Town Hall

Image: Raul Kohli

Let’s Caper
Bringing live music, stand-up comedy and street food together, Let’s Caper gets a new venue and a new lease of life. Expect music from soul singer-songwriter Sisi, guitar pop artist Cortney Dixon and funky pop outfit Moon Wax; plus Catherine Young hosts the comedy offering, alongside Mike Milligan, Sascha Lo and Howka Charvaz. There’s salsa dancing lessons, art and vintage stalls, film screenings, street food and five bars!
Friday 16th June @ BALTIC, Gateshead

Gabriel Moreno
With influences which span the likes of Leonard Cohen, Bill Callahan and Nick Cave, you can assured of a night of top-notch storytelling and a passionate performance from Gabriel Moreno, who has strong links to the London alt. Americana and folk songwriter scene. Local support comes from Peter Hall and Jasmine Weatherill.
Saturday 17th June @ The Studio, Hartlepool

Quatermass III
From the people behind World of Twist, Earl Brutus and The Dials comes a ubiquitous yet fresh incarnation; Quatermass III employ an age-old technique of providing infectious danceable rhythms, catchy hooks and lugubrious vocals all while keeping an eye on the cosmos and the grooving crowd out front.
Saturday 17th June @ The Lubber Fiend, Newcastle

Abe Partridge & David Ford
For lovers of evocative songwriting and heart-stopping vocals, this double headline show is a real must-see. Alabama native Abe Partridge is a heralded musician, songwriter and visual artist, who joins the UK’s own David Ford, multi-instrumentalist, producer and occasional carpenter, for an evening of visceral storytelling and lyrical dexterity.
Saturday 17th June @ Old Cinema Launderette, Durham

Off The Stage Fest
Music lovers in Sunderland can get ready for cracking all-dayer, as Off The Stage Fest focuses entirely on acoustic performances, making it an intimate opportunity to catch a showcase of the up and coming talent emerging through the region. There will be a range of genres to enjoy, including addictive indie rock from headliners The Neolectrics; the Pagan Viking metal of LN; the pop punk of Failed To Ignite; there’s intimate storytelling from abstract guitar duo Black Moss; acoustic blued duo YUMA; the personal meditations of Philip Jonathan; alt. pop rockers Fire Lady Luck, and more.
Saturday 17th June @ The Ship Isis, Sunderland

The Star and Shadow, Market/Car Boot Sale Extravaganza, Newcastle
The Star and Shadow Summer Market/Car Boot Sale Extravaganza will be taking place outdoors (weather permitting) outside the venue for those looking for bric-a-brac, arts, crafts, second hand clothes, books, collectibles and a treasure trove of bounty to discover. And if you’re feeling a bit peckish, the café will be open selling sweet & savoury food.
Sunday 18th June @ Star and Shadow, Newcastle (free entry)

Frankie & The Witch Fingers
One only needs to listen to Frankie & The Witch Fingers’ latest single Electricide to hear how the band can ramp up the amps and churn out the tracks to get the feet stomping. As the drums catapult the track into a storm of whizzing guitars, the mania is exhilarating. Raw and unkempt, the band’s garage influence keeps their sound as dirty and depraved as one could want from their punk, as energy is the predominant focus throughout each of their albums.
Sunday 18th June @ The Cluny, Newcastle

Image: Unknown Mortal Orchestra by Juan Ortiz Arenas

Unknown Mortal Orchestra
With an angstier, more experimental (or dangerous) swing born from a pandemic that put all festivity into perspective, the musicians’ stoned pop-prog has lent into its effortlessness, scratching at a subterranean undergroove only in the vindication of dance which – in these days of re-communing – is a kind of rebel against cynicism. Rather than the easy salt breeze of past tours, dancing to the songs of new album V might feel like bliss in spite of an eroded ignorance.
Monday 19th June @ Boiler Shop, Newcastle

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