March 2, 2016
Theatre: Single Spies
Belinda Lang (of 2point4 Children fame) is among the recognisable faces cast in this Olivier Award-winning piece by Alan Bennett. Rachel Kavanaugh directs the classic comedy, which takes us back to the 1950s and the espionage of the infamous ‘Cambridge Five’. Bennett applies his comic mastery to the lives of two of the treacherous spy ring, Guy Burgess and Anthony Blunt.
Art: Baldock, Pope, Zahle
Head to the Northern Gallery for Contemporary Art in Sunderland for a new sculptural installation by Jonathan Baldock, and newly commissioned work by Nicholas Pope and Maria Zahle. Featuring a diverse range of styles and materials, including glass, ceramics and textiles, the three artists’ creations share roots in the handmade, conveying an intimacy that is highly emotive
March 19 until June 18
Bringing true love, treachery, and some of opera’s best-loved music to the Sunderland Empire, Tosca is a must-see (or a must-see again!). This Ellen Kent production features a traditional, beautifully designed set that Puccini himself may well have envisaged. Vladimir Dragos reprises his most famous role as Scarpia, while Tosca herself is brought to life by Maria Tonina and Alyona Kistenyova.
Poetry: Great Northern Slam
Poetry meets X Factor at this fast and furious showcase of the region’s best wordsmiths. Each slam poet gets just three minutes to wow the crowd with words and delivery before the audience votes, whittling the performers down to a final two who go on to compete for the glorious title of Great Northern Slam Champion. Last year’s winner, Rowan McCabe (pictured), will be making a guest appearance.