WEEKLY ROUND-UP (22.05.23) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Reliably informed

Image: Eliza Hull

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 May issue of NARC. magazine – out now in print and online.

MUSIC Ulrika Spacek
Ulrika Spacek were originally formed back in 2014 but the band’s roots date all the way back to 2002, when Rhys Edwards, Joseph Stone and Ben White formed The Enigma Project. Following a period of flux with the name and composition of the band, they began to make a name for themselves with a blend of abstract rock and hazy vocals. Their new album is an impressive return, and one which directly addresses their prolonged absence.
Tuesday 23rd May @ Zerox, Newcastle

MUSIC And So I Watch You From Afar
The instrumental Irish four-piece have gained a cult following around the world, and have become known for their experimental and euphoric sound which refuses to be pigeonholed in any genre or style. An overwhelming riot for the senses, And So I Watched You From Afar’s live shows are renowned for delivering thrilling escapism and joy.
Wednesday 24th May @ Newcastle University Students’ Union

ART & LIT Refracted Panorama
Marking the collaboration between BALTIC and Northumbria University, graduating artists from the BA and MFA programmes suggest ways of seeing through and beyond the horizon of the human; expect views from elsewhere, broken sightlines, experiences that move across time and space from embodied knowledges that alter our ways of being.
Thursday 25th-Sunday 28th May @ Gallery North, Northumbria University, Newcastle

MUSIC Ruth Lyon & Eliza Hull
Having connected over a shared experience of being disabled artists working in the music industry, Ruth Lyon and Eliza Hull are performing an intimate ‘Access All Areas’ event at Sage Gateshead. Australian musician and author Eliza Hull’s contemporary songs are inspired by her life experiences; Eliza has been writing songs and performing gigs since the age of 14, and through a calm, relaxing atmosphere and heartfelt lyrics her songs have an almost cathartic effect upon the listener. Newcastle singer-songwriter Ruth Lyon has been inspired by Regina Spektor, Fiona Apple and Aldous Harding, and brings soothing, melodic, chamber pop/anti-folk songs to the stage. Her songs discuss the weighty topics of insecurity, self-doubt and the arduousness of coping with people’s expectations, allowing the listener to thoroughly relate to her songs. 
Thursday 25th May @ Sage Gateshead

MUSIC Haru Nemuri
Incorporating influences from both sides of the Atlantic, be it J-rock or the punk and nu-metal movements of the 2000s, Haru Nemuri makes music that is as universally comprehensible as it is critically acclaimed. Whether it’s the fury-fueled feminist anthem Anger Anger (ft. Jaguar Jonez) or the melodic metal of Never Let You Go, she embodies a controlled energy that is at once emotive and empowering.
Thursday 25th May @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle

FILM Northern Film Festival
The Northern Film Festival will collaborate with ARC for a screening of the five showcase film pieces from BA (Hons) students of Film, TV & Theatre Production at The Northern School of Art. From interrogating loneliness to marrying the possibilities of speed dating with bloodshed and a play on perspective and the ontology of cinematography, the festival programme features unusual thematic concoctions.
Thursday 25th May @ ARC, Stockton


Image: Chewy She by Noemi Reijnen


MUSIC Chewy She’s Moth Popera
Electro disco project Chewy She will present The Moth Popera tour; a series of immersive live shows which incorporate theatre, comedy, fashion and art. Featuring a multi-disciplinary performance from the band who collaborate with costume makers Ellie Oldfield and Emily Rees-Hayne, director Paulina Lenoir and choreographer Patricia Langa to incorporate electrifying musicianship, performers and backing dancers all served up with a heap of irony and theatrics.
Friday 26th May @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle

STAGE Happy Place
Happy Place is a comedic show commenting on society’s perception of what it means to be happy in a world where technology continues to evolve. It has been described as a Black-Mirrormeets-Monty-Python-meets-Jumanji adventure, exploring happiness, friendship and the role technology plays in our world.
Friday 26th May @ Northern Stage, Newcastle

STAGE I, Daniel Blake
When I, Daniel Blake first hit our screens in 2016, its gut-wrenching story offered a stark reflection of a country that couldn’t possibly get any worse. But, of course, it has: with 14.5 million people in the UK now living in poverty, it feels more important than ever that Ken Loach’s original vision is re-imagined for these unprecedented times. With real passion evident in every corner of this stage adaptation by Dave Johns, I, Daniel Blake promises to be as iconic and urgent as the original.
Friday 26th May-Saturday 10th June @ Northern Stage


Image: I, Daniel Blake by Helen Murray


Ut were already scene veterans by the time they started putting out records on Blast First in the mid-80s, the trio –  Nina Canal, Jacqui Ham, and Sally Young – appeared during the insanely fertile No Wave era in New York and by 1981 were based in London in time for the post-punk boom here. Their fertile blend of free jazz, noise, improvisation and radical politics was to some extent at odds with the often quite macho noise scene, and now their entire back catalogue is being made available again after a long time, with a series of live dates into the bargain.
Friday 26th May @ Disgraceland, Middlesbrough / Saturday 27th May @ The Lubber Fiend, Newcastle 

ART & LIT Essence Of Nature

Essence of Nature presents a rare opportunity to see around 100 oil and watercolours by leading artists from the Pre-Raphaelite, Rural Naturalist and British Impressionist schools together.

The exhibition features artists such as William Holman Hunt, John Ruskin, William Dyce, William Homan Hunt, George Herbert and more.

From Saturday 27th May to Saturday 14th October @ Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle

MUSIC Gwailo
North East hard rock legends Gwailo have become notorious for their live shows; get a taste for the band’s thundering rock tunes via their 2019 EP, A Thousand Masks, which flaunts all the best bits of their sound, from the shredding riffs of Suicide to the catchy hooks of the drum-heavy Maybe I’d Believe It.
Saturday 27th May @ Independent, Sunderland

MUSIC Comfort
Glaswegian siblings Comfort have been making waves with their fusion of electro and punk. Loud, assertive and euphoric, Comfort make sounds that engage them; the brother and sister have clearly held two fingers up to any rhetoric, and this is extremely tangible in their songs, with each track swelling up into an extraordinary and proud ‘fuck you’. The duo are vocal members of the LGBTQ+ community, with their music taking a staunch stance on the side of love, acceptance and understanding. Never shying away from addressing the politics, phobias and hate that marginalised communities experience, Comfort are all about openness and fighting back against stigma or intolerance.
Sunday 28th May @ The Cumberland Arms, Newcastle

MUSIC Situational Soundtrack

Situational Soundtrack is an exploration into the sounds which form parts of daily life. Inspired by the likes of Brian Eno’s Music for Airports or Erik Satie’s Vexations, it considers what situational music is or could be as well as closer aspects of the everyday situations we often find ourselves in.

Sunday 28th May @ Elder Beer Café, Newcastle


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