The Tyne and Wear Metro is hosting live drama and dance performances this weekend as part of operator Nexus’ biggest ever community arts programme.
A youth theatre group, Stage Tynemouth, are running a series of impromptu shows at three stations on the Metro network in North Tyneside.
The group will be performing some short, choreographed, contemporary pieces, featuring thought provoking and entertaining stories told through the mediums of drama and dance.
It is the third live event on Metro as part of the big Metro Takeover.
The programme, which was launched earlier in the summer, involves regional arts organisations including Sunderland Culture, Dance City and Cultural Spring run community projects and commissions to be showcased at stations across the busy urban transit system.
The performances will be held this weekend at three Metro stations:
• Saturday 4 December: Monkseaton 1.30pm – 2.50pm; Whitley Bay 3.30pm-4.45pm
• Sunday 5 December: Cullercoats 1.30pm – 2.50pm; Whitley Bay 3.30pm-4.45pm
Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said: “We are really excited to welcome our first ever live theatre performances on the Metro system this weekend.
“Customers can expect to see some entertaining and thought-provoking dance and drama skills being performed in the surroundings of three of our Metro stations in North Tyneside.
“We have already had great feedback from the live dance events we held in the summer, and we expect the youth theatre group from Stage Tynemouth to be just as popular. We are all looking forward to seeing them perform and I’m sure that our customers will too.
“Metro is being turned into a platform for community arts and live performances by creative people from across North East England as part of the Metro Takeover, our biggest ever community arts programme, to help us celebrate Metro’s 40th anniversary.
“Creative arts and the barriers it breaks down are a great way to help people reconnect with Metro in their everyday lives now that lockdown is over, and more customers are returning to the network.”
Local writer Sam Neale gathered the themes and narratives to write original scripts for the groups, and dance facilitator Katherine Whale choreographed contemporary pieces.
Stage Tynemouth’s Pre-Seniors uncover the need to never judge a book by its cover: The Witch: a group of children tell stories of a witch down the street. but this witch is not what she seems, and the children might need her help when they stumble into a mean and magical forest.
The Seniors tell many stories through time with a common thread at a station: The Bird: a strange local landmark attracts world-wide attention. Three teens think they know the origin of the story, but which one, if any, is true?
Having never performed site-specific work previously, Stage Tynemouth's young people are curious and excited, calling on new drama and movement skills that they haven't utilised before. It is hoped the performances will offer the Metro customers a warm, feel-good experience on their journeys to whichever community they are travelling towards.
Between August 2021 and spring 2022 Metro will be brought to life in new ways through dance, song, music and visual arts projects involving people right across the region and funded by Arts Council England.