Two Newcastles is a co production between Curious Monkey and Newcastle Arts Development Organisation from Kwa Zulu Natal. ‘Two Newcastles’ is the flagship cultural project for Newcastles of the World, an alliance of all the places in the world that share the name Newcastle. The project is supported by International Newcastle.
The artists met at the National Arts Festival 2015 where Curious Monkey were running the Remix Laboratory in partnership with the Swallows Foundation UK. After a brilliant 10 days working together, the artists knew they wanted to take their collaborating further. In 2016 artists from NADO visited the northeast to work with the UK cast on research and development for the new show. The group visited the Edinburgh Festival, ran a singing workshop at Sage Gateshead, met artists at the GIFT exchange, saw lots of theatre and met the great network of artists working in the northeast.
In January 2018, the UK artists visited South Africa to continue the exchange and performed in multiple venues around Newcastle KZN. Read all about what the UK artists got up to on the exchange via their blogs: Alice, Sam, Stan and Jonluke. In May 2018, the South African artists came to Newcastle, UK for an intensive rehearsal period, culminating in the creation of ‘This World Here…Nomhlaba Le’ , the show developed through three international exchanges. Alongside the show, the artists ran workshops in schools and hospitals (in partnership with the Northumbria Healthcare NHS Trust Foundation) to gather stories and share songs about what it means to live or be from the northeast of England.
We are grateful to the funders who supported the initial stages of the project – Arts Council England through Grants for the Arts & Tyne and Wear Community Foundation, Waka Waka Northeast and our partners NADO, Newcastles of the World and International Newcastle.