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Celebrate Culture and Sport this September in NewcastleGateshead

20th July 2011

Categories: Latest News

This September 54,000 pairs of feet will pound the tarmac over the iconic Tyne Bridge as the world’s largest half marathon, the Bupa Great North Run, takes place for the 31st time. 

Always exciting and energetic, the Great North Run Weekend returns, 17-18 September, and features a diverse cultural programme and the popular Great City Games to keep crowds engaged and entertained over the two days. 

If this all seems a little exhausting, then why not sample a host of other cultural treats at a slightly more sedate pace, including the historical Heritage Open Days (8-11 September) taking place in various venues across NewcastleGateshead; the alternative, quirky and subliminal guide to NewcastleGateshead in the Invisible Architecture tours (9-11 September); and the eagerly awaited reopening of one of the finest Grade I listed theatre buildings in England, Newcastle’s Theatre Royal with the staging of Alan Bennett’s the Madness of George III  (12-17 September).

Listings

Heritage Open Days
Friday 08 – Monday 11 September 2011
Various venues across NewcastleGateshead
Heritage Open Days celebrates England’s fantastic architecture and culture by offering free access to properties that are usually closed to the public or charge for admission. Every year over four days in September, buildings of every age, style and function throw open their doors. Venues across NewcastleGateshead taking part in this year’s Heritage Open Days include the National Trust at Gibside, Gateshead, and BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art with a special behind the scenes insight into how the historic flour mill was transformed into a haven for modern art.  

It is a once-a-year chance to discover hidden architectural treasures and enjoy a wide range of tours, events and activities which bring to life local history and culture. www.heritageopendays.org.uk

Invisible Architectures
Saturday 09 – Monday 11 September 2011
Various venues across NewcastleGateshead
Invisible Architectures is a micro-festival exploring the invisible yet influential substrates of urban existence. Artists, architects and writers expose layers of Newcastle City Centre focusing on  background noise, ambiences and atmospheres through guided tours of the subtle, subliminal and subterranean. http://subliminalcity.co.uk

Newcastle Mela
11 September 2011
Exhibition Park, Newcastle
'Mela' originates from the Indian sub continent. The word Mela comes from the Sanskrit "to meet". It is commonly used to describe a large gathering of people celebrating artistic, religious or political events - a fair or a festival. The Mela is a free event, based around Punjabi, Pakistani, Bengali and Hindi and other South Asian cultures, and is open to anyone who wants to learn more, be entertained and meet new people as well as enjoy different music, art and food in the heart of Newcastle.  With a line up including the hottest contemporary Asian acts as well as traditional displays of music and dance it's an event likely to appeal to all ages and races.
 
Taking place in Exhibition Park, the Mela promises to be weekend full of fun with music, games, stalls and exhibitions to help everyone have a great weekend!  With a stage playing host to musicians and dancers, hundreds of stalls selling arts and crafts, food and drink and a children's programme to help the kids learn, make friends and have fun; there's plenty to do whatever your tastes. www.newcastlemela.co.uk/index.asp

The Madness of George III and Theatre Royal re-opening
12-17 September
Grey Street, Newcastle
The Theatre Royal is about to change. But to create the future, it is going back to its great past. The Theatre Royal is one of only nine Grade 1 Listed theatres in England and is regarded by many as the UK’s finest theatre building. The £4.75m refurbishment project will introduce the highest modern standards of comfort, and improve energy and carbon efficiency. In the auditorium new seating will be installed at all levels as well as new lighting and ventilation, major renovations to fabrics, carpets and paintwork and extensive gold-leaf work.

The first production to be staged in the newly renovated theatre will be Alan Bennett’s The Madness of George III. One of Bennett’s biggest hits the platy originally opened at the National Theatre in 1991 and went on to become an international hit and an award-winning film. The lead role is played by David Haig, one of the UK’s most versatile actors whose stage credits include Yes, Prime Minister and My Country’s Good for which he won an Olivier Award.

The re-opening in September will be followed by a major celebration in February 2012 as the Theatre Royal celebrates its 175th anniversary. More information about the birthday programme is to come, but it’s set to be a spectacular performance! www.theatreroyal.co.uk

Gateshead Millennium Bridge – 10th Birthday
Saturday 17 September 2011
Baltic Quays, Gateshead
The world’s first and only tilting bridge celebrates its 10th birthday in September.  Designed by Wilkinson Eyre Architects and engineered by Gifford, the Gateshead Millennium Bridge is one of the most iconic images of the ‘twin cities’.  www.gateshead.gov.uk/bridge/bridged.htm

Bupa Great North Run Weekend
Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 September 2011
NewcastleGateshead Quayside
Experience the entire weekend of Bupa Great North Run events including the Great North City Games, cultural programme and junior races. www.greatrun.org 

The Great City Games kicks off on Saturday 17 September, and sees to athletes from Great Britain and Ireland take on competitors from across the pond (USA) on NewcastleGateshead Quayside. www.greatcitygames.org 

The highly-successful 2010 programme for Great North Run Culture marked the 30th anniversary of the Great North Run and will be followed this year by an exciting and ambitious programme of projects, events and commissions that explore sport and art, all set against the backdrop of the world's largest half-marathon. Commissions include, a new literature commission and poetry residency by Kate Fox, in partnership with New Writing North, and the presentation of the 2011 Moving Image Commission (MIC), Run A Mile (In My Shoes) by David Blandy. www.greatnorthrunculture.org

Bupa Great North Run
Sunday 18 September 2011
NewcastleGateshead – South Shields
The most iconic and biggest half marathon on the planet, 2011 is the 31st Great North Run and will host 54,000 runners, including top athletes and those taking part for the atmosphere, the pride and the fun! www.greatrun.org

International Print Biennale
Saturday 17 September – Saturday 19 November 2011
Northern Print, Newcastle
The International Print Biennale celebrates printmaking with a range of exhibitions, workshops and activities across NewcastleGateshead, and Print City fringe events. The Print Awards launches the Biennale with an open call for submissions of works which are shortlisted for the exhibitions by a panel of experts in the field of printmaking. As part of the event this year, a giant piece of print will be created using a steam roller. www.northernprint.org.uk  


Ends

Media Contact
Shelley Staines, Media & PR Manager, NewcastleGateshead Initiative
T. 0191 440 5739 E. shelley.staines@ngi.org.uk
Get up to the date information on NewcastleGateshead, follow @altweet_pet via Twitter

Notes to Editors
• The 2011 NewcastleGateshead Discover Pass is THE visitor discounting pass for NewcastleGateshead with over 120 offers at attractions, venues, pubs, restaurants and hotels. It is available direct from www.discoverpass.co.uk, which has information on the latest deals and top places to visit in NewcastleGateshead, or from Tourist Information Centres and costs just £10. Catch-up on the latest Discover Pass news by following @DiscoverPass on Twitter.

• United by seven bridges across a spectacular riverscape, Newcastle (a city on the north bank of the River Tyne) and Gateshead (a town on the south bank) form a single, diverse and extremely vibrant visitor destination. World-class culture, vibrant nightlife, award-winning dining, inspiring heritage, fantastic shopping and acclaimed architecture are combined here like nowhere else, by the famous Geordie spirit which is symbolised by Antony Gormley’s iconic Angel of the North as it welcomes travellers to the area.

• NewcastleGateshead Initiative is the destination marketing agency for NewcastleGateshead. Its mission is to position and promote NewcastleGateshead as a leading destination for leisure and business visitors through cultural programming, event bidding and high-profile, targeted destination marketing and PR activity.  Created in 2000 by Gateshead Council and Newcastle City Council as a publicly and privately funded business, NewcastleGateshead Initiative has developed a strong brand for the area - promoting it nationally and internationally as a place at the forefront of innovative culture-led regeneration and a world-class place to live, learn, work and visit.

• It is estimated that visitors to NewcastleGateshead from around the UK and overseas contribute £1.23bn to the local economy.

• Press releases and copyright-free, hi-res images of NewcastleGateshead are available at www.NewcastleGateshead.com/Media
 

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