Yarns from Hyem on tour

Published: 8 November 2021
Reporter: Peter Lathan

Tales from Hyem: the actors, directors and writers Credit: Jack Davidson

Yarns from Hyem, four NE plays, three new, are to tour regional venues, most of which do not normally present theatre, during November.

The three new plays have been chosen by North Shields based theatre company Blowin’ a Hooley to complement the local classic Attachments by the late Julia Darling which began life in 2002 as a two-hander at Live Theatre, starring Charlie Hardwick and Trevor Fox and directed by Jeremy Herrin, which the author later adapted for TV when it was broadcast by Tyne Tees as a 30-minute comedy, still featuring Hardwick and Fox.

The three new plays are Biscuit Tins by Middlesbrough writer Elijah Young, A Memory for Forgetting by Alex Oates from North Blyth and Pupil Premium by South Shields new writer Barbara Williams.

Biscuit Tins by Elijah Young, the Young Writer in Residence 2019 at the Customs House in South Shields, tells the story of two siblings who appear to be very close but eventually cracks in their relationship start to show. Instead of brushing them under the carpet, they choose to face the problems of their past.

A Memory for Forgetting is set in the world of memory competitions as a girl from the Meadowell Estate in North Shields takes on the UK Memory Championship. The play examines the irony of how tough it can be when you’re practicing to remember when there are things you’d rather forget.

Pupil Premium was written as the result of a regional competition Blowin’ a Hooley held to find a new female writer from the North East. Winner Barbara Williams is a teacher by day and based the play on her experiences of seeing the low aspirations and lack of confidence in young people.

Blowin’ a Hooley is led by actors Harriet Ghost, who trained at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, New York, and Micky McGregor, who was a participant in BAFTA’s Elevate 2019 programme which supports actors from under-represented groups moving forward in their careers and helps to tackle the issue of diversity in the industry.

They will be joined by will be joined by North East actors Michaela Forbes, Hannah Marie Davis, Sarah Balfour, Sam Stafford and Paul Joseph who will be directed by Tracy Gillman and Andy Berriman.

Yarns from Hyem tour:

  • 20 November at 2:00 at Old Low Light Heritage Centre, North Shields and at 6:30 at The Institute, Cambois
  • 22 November at 2:00 at Whitley Bay Library
  • 23 November at 2:00 at St Vincent’s Centre, Newcastle and at 6:30 at Cedarwood Trust, North Shields
  • 25 November at 7:30 at The Exchange, North Shields
  • 26 November at 2:00 at Pelaw View Centre, Gateshead
  • 27 November at 2:00 at Ushaw, County Durham