Some theatre with your shopping?

Peter Lathan

Sunderland Stages, which seeks to bring theatre to unexpected and unusual places, brings a show to the city centre shopping centre, The Bridges, on a Saturday in September.

First Person is a free, half hour ‘drop in’ show from Zest Theatre which has been created especially for public spaces.

Two players enter a virtual world and compete for the ultimate prize, happiness, and all they need to do is follow the voice of the unseen guide to the finish. But of course, it isn’t that simple.

Audiences are encouraged to wear headphones which will allow them to get involved, hearing extra things that those without can’t, and have the chance to influence what is happening in the storyline.

First Person will be performed on 23 September in Central Square in the Bridges, with shows at 11:30AM, 1:30PM and 3:30PM.

Samantha Czwordon-Wright, marketing manager of the Bridges, is looking forward to seeing how the audience reacts to the show and hopes it will be the start of an exciting season of cultural activities for the centre.

“We are always looking at ways to engage visitors, and we have always liked to do exciting new things. First Person is a half-hour show which people can engage with as much or as little as they like.

“They can sit and watch the whole thing and get involved via the headphones, or they can just drop in and out and see what is happening. It’s a unique performance and it will certainly get people interested.

“Here at the Bridges, we are delighted to be partners in the city’s Culture 2012 bid, and this show forms part of what we’re doing to show that Sunderland can be a cultural hub to be proud of.”

“The Bridges is the heart of Sunderland city centre, so having a show here this season was really important to us,” said Rachel Horton of Sunderland Stages.

“This type of show is completely what Sunderland Stages is all about, bringing original, exciting and different theatre to an unexpected place. It’s not every day you go Saturday shopping and come across a theatre show! Shoppers are in for a real treat and we hope that they grab a pair of headphones and listen in.”