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Northumberland Theatre Company



NTC is a professional small-scale touring theatre company based at the Playhouse, Alnwick. We tour shows around the country, predominantly using village halls and community centres as venues in small rural towns and villages

"NTC's productions may be small-scale and done on a shoestring but they are backed by a team which can match anything done by much bigger, purpose built theatres and whose imagination and ability to weave a storytelling magic as they transform unpromising spaces into theatres for the night is second to none" - Lynn Gardner, The Guardian


Writer alert!

Posted by: Karen - Wed 1st Apr 2015 3:17pm
NTC Touring Theatre Company has received funding from ACE Grants for the Arts to produce


A new


‘Canterbury Tales’ for family audiences.

Touring nationally in autumn 2015: NTC seeks

one emergent Northern based writer

to join the writing team for this project.

An evening of six tale-telling misadventures with comic, swashbuckling, sad and bawdy traditional stories, linked through character, music and song in a ‘Canterbury Tales’, story-telling format. Including popular Northern Tales such as ‘A Snowball in June and Midside Maggie’s Bannock’; ‘The Adventures of Launcelot Errington and his Nephew Mark’ and other unremembered classics! As well as tales from the working roots of the region: fishing, mining, farming and ship building. An evening to delight, enchant and entertain with music, song and plenty of humour.

Writers may be complete beginners or have had one professional production of their work: this is an open competition process.

Successful applicants will be shortlisted and invited to attend a 2 day professional writing workshop at the end of May in Alnwick, Northumberland (NB there are no expenses payable for this workshop):


Workshop 1

: Basic playwrighting ‘tools’ required to present your work/ideas: including layout, structure, character and plot.

Workshop 2

: Adapting an extant story for theatrical presentation.

These workshops will be lead by

Ann Coburn

, published playwright, author and Royal Literary Fund Fellow and

Stewart Howson

playwright and published author, and actor who has adapted ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’; ‘Great Expectations’; ‘Whisky Galore’; ‘Tartuffe’ and ‘Mary Barton’, amongst others, for the stage.

• Shortlisted applicants will then be required to work up their idea for a Tale in light of their workshop experience.
• One writer will be selected and have the opportunity to see their work professionally produced and will be paid

an inclusive fee of £1,000



Submit the following information:
• A one page synopsis of your idea or the story that you wish to adapt and why? N.B. This must be a

Northern story

: either an adaptation of a story (e.g. from Wilson’s Tales of the Borders or any other traditional tales, or a traditional or new tale from the working roots of the region: fishing, mining, farming and ship building. (Please note if you are chosen to work on this project, you may need to modify your idea to ensure it fits in within the whole project of six plays).
• The first 10 pages of a play script you have previously written
• A writing CV and/or reason why this opportunity is important to you at this moment.

o Plays must last no longer than twenty minutes
o Plays must be suitable to tour to intergenerational community audiences 13+ as well as theatre audiences.
o Plays will be for 6 actors 3m 3f, (though more characters are possible with doubling and cross-gender casting) 2 of the actors will be trainees most likely under 25.
o Plays will be directed by Gillian Hambleton, Artistic Director of NTC.

Please submit your application to Email: [email protected]
Contact Gill by

noon on 1 May 2015 (N.B. no other queries regarding this opportunity will be answered by email)


Book a show now!

Posted by: Karen - Mon 16th Mar 2015 10:15am
For 2015/16 NTC will be presenting:

Autumn 2015 'A Wife or The Gallows and other Telling Tales':

A new Northern 'Canterbury Tales' for family audiences - an evening of six-tale-telling misadventures with comic, swashbuckling, sad and bawdy traditional stories. An evening to delight, enchant and entertain with music, song and plenty of humour.

A Wife or the Gallows

Winter 2015/16 'The Ugly Duckling' adapted by Neil Duffield:

An enchanting reworking of Hans Christian Andersen's story - packed with splendid songs, dance and visual treats - this is a funny and heart warming story for all the family.
Suitable for all ages.

The Ugly Duckling

Call us now to arrange for a show to be held at your venue on 01665 602586 or email us using the contact form. Please note that we only work two days per week, Mondays and Tuesdays are a good time to try.

4 Thoughts - Touring to a venue near you!

Posted by: Karen - Mon 2nd Mar 2015 11:11am
Hedging Your Bets

See reviews and features for 4 Thoughts:

The Journal
Northumberland Gazette

Undercover Yan Tan

Touring until 21 March 2015, see it whilst you can.

The Arrangement Undercover

Opening Thursday night!

Posted by: Karen - Tue 24th Feb 2015 11:14am
We are very excited with how the shows are coming together and will be able to offer you a wonderful evening of theatre.

Four short, very different, fabulous new plays showcasing some of the best and up-and-coming theatre writing talent will take to the road during February and March playing to mainly rural audiences in the North East and the Borders.

These four new plays have been specially commissioned by NTC for this project, which is funded by Arts Council England, Grants for the Arts as NTC director, Gill Hambleton explained:

“All 4 writers - Alison Dobie, Patrick Hughes, Alan Bell and Beccy Smith - went through an open competitive process which was advertised locally and nationally and from this we received 105 applications. These were then shortlisted from an example of the writer’s previous work and their idea for a script for this project and then finally four were selected on the strength of their application and appropriateness of their plays for a rural tour which would make an exciting and varied evening of theatre.”

Billed as an evening of ‘myth, music, mayhem and mirth’ the four half hour plays, one of which is a new musical, will explore life in all its guises and promises to be a roller-coaster ride of emotions and laughter.

“We’ve got six great actors, a fantastic set and four brilliant plays - a rural idyll, a Faustian pact, a haunting melody and an exaggerated lie - which all adds up to a fast paced, thought-provoking and most importantly, entertaining evening of theatre. And as ever we’re taking our show to the audiences in more out of the way places,” said Gill.

4Thoughts kicks off its tour at Alnwick Playhouse on February 26 and is on the road until March 21.

Dates for Spring show now available!

Posted by: Karen - Mon 19th Jan 2015 2:05pm
The Tickets for our Spring show 4 Thoughts are available now, contact your local venue. We would like to welcome 3 new venues this time, Longhorsley Village Hall, The Alan Armstrong Theatre in Stanley, Co. Durham and the MAC Arts Centre in Galashiels, please support these new venues as well as our existing ones.

4 Thoughts: Myth. Music, Mayhem and Mirth

Four fabulous new plays showcasing some of the best, up-and-coming theatre writing talent - a terrific evening of theatre, performed by six actors. Comic, heart-warming, passionate, full of music and energy, these four half-hour plays will explore life in all its guises, including a new musical! Be prepared for a roller-coaster ride of emotions and laughter! A great evening's entertainment!
4 Thoughts

Come and have a rip-roaring evening and then a right good chat about which one you preferred.

We would like to thank Arts Council, England North East, The Mercers Company and The Garrick Charitable Trust for supporting this show.

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