Making something brilliant on Tyneside

Published: 3 July 2019
Reporter: Peter Lathan

Art at the Baltic
Spy School at Northern Stage
Film-making - Tyneside Cinema
Dance at Dance City

City of Dreams, a 10 year strategy initiated by NewcastleGateshead Cultural Venues in 2017, offers 45,000 chances for children and young people to #MakeSomethingBrilliant in NewcastleGateshead this summer. For the first time the initiative brings more than 300 creative activities to iconic venues on Tyneside. With events every day during the summer holidays, the programme includes experiences in drama, dance, music, art, filmmaking, writing, improvisation comedy, technology and more, run by organisations including Baltic Centre for Contemporary Arts, Northern Stage, Dance City, Great North Museum, Live Theatre, Newcastle Improv Festival, Sage Gateshead and more.

“We spoke to 1000 under25s in the city,” City of Dreams Executive Producer Ben Dickenson explains. “They said growing up on Tyneside isn’t always easy but they are full of creative ideas and talent. They don’t just want to see a movie, a music gig, or enjoy the latest digital inventions; they want to make their own. #MakeSomethingBrilliant is a city-wide and summer-long chance to do exactly that.”

By ensuring that two-thirds of the #MakeSomethingBrilliant progamme is available without charge and securing a host of special offers from places like Seven Stories and Tyneside Cinema, City of Dreams is ensuring the most disadvantaged don’t miss out. #MakeSomethingBrilliant has been endorsed by the City of Dreams Young Champions Board, a representative body of children and young people founded by Gateshead Youth Assembly and Newcastle Youth Council.

Highlights of the programme for summer 2019 include:

  • NewcastleGateshead’s first ever creative skills “Spy School” run by Northern Stage
  • a week of music and fun to help you move like your favourite pop stars at Dance City
  • the North East premiere of The Unknown, a high-tech interactive theatre production guiding audiences through Ouseburn, brought exclusively to the region by Manic Chord Theatre and Seven Stories
  • a creative writing summer school led by New Writing North
  • filmmaking challenges at Theatre Royal and animation bootcamps at Tyneside Cinema
  • construction skills with LEGO and saving the environment with slime jars at Discovery Museum
  • improvisation comedy workshops with the The Suggestibles at Alphabetti Theatre
  • "make yourself a superhero" with daily science activities at the International Centre for Life
  • weekly workshops in skills for art led by leading visual arts practitioners at BALTIC
  • theatre making workshops with award winning directors, actors and writers at Live Theatre

17 year old Eryn Wood from East Newcastle, a Young Champions and a Prince’s Trust Ambassador, said, ”I can’t wait to experience #MakeSomethingBrilliant. There’s something for everyone, and most of it is free. It’s a chance to be yourself, find a new talent, learn something new - and it’s for everyone!”

The programme begins on Saturday 20th July and runs at 16 venues across Tyneside every day until Sunday 1st September. Full listings can be found on the City of Dreams website.

Two thirds of #MakeSomethingBrilliant events are free. Other offers include £1 tickets for any film for unemployed and asylum seekers at Tyneside Cinema, weekdays before 5:00 (contact box office on 0191 227 5500), a groupon offer of 35% off day and annual passes at Seven Stories and buy one, get one free entry to The Unknown (contact box office 03003301095, use code BOGOFAUG).