North East Exchange in black on a yellow background

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Connecting artists, venues and festivals

Monday 1 July 2024
2pm – 4.30pm
ARC Stockton Arts Centre
Free to attend

Are you a performance-based artist, creative or programmer based in the North East of England? Do you want to share what you do with other people, and find out what others are doing?

Designed to help connect North East based artists, creatives and venue/festival programmers working in performance, the North East Exchange is a friendly, safe environment to share ideas, plans and priorities.

The event will involve presentations as well as informal chats.

Any artist, creative or programmer can book a presenting slot on a first come, first served basis, in which they will get three minutes to share their work and plans with everyone in the room. You can book your slot by selecting an ‘Attend & Present’ ticket during checkout.

If you are an artist, you could choose to speak about who you are, what your practice is and what opportunities you are looking for, or you could talk about a show, whether at an initial idea, tour-ready or any stage in-between.

If you are representing a venue or festival, you could speak about your artistic policy, what kind of performance work you are looking for, and any opportunities for artists you are offering.

North East Exchange is an opportunity to talk about your work, face to face, and get people excited about it. There is no technical support available, so please ensure your presentation does not rely on sound or visuals as there won’t be any equipment to support playback.

It builds on previous events such as Meet the Programmers (pre-2020) and the North East Culture Socials that emerged during the pandemic.

We want to maintain and support relationships and networks – between artists, between programmers, and between artists and programmers. And we want to have positive conversations about performance-based work in the North East.

If you are interested in performance, the future and are based in the North East – please come!


Access support is available (e.g. BSL interpretation, a quiet space, assistance working out where to park etc) – please tell us what you need so that we can make arrangements to meet your requirements. This also includes access surrounding the allotted time you have to present – if you have an access requirement that means three minutes is unsuitable, please let us know. Please email [email protected] with any access requirements.

Arriving at ARC

If you haven’t been to ARC before, there is a chance to arrive early and have a look round the building. Please meet in the main foyer at 1pm. Andy Newcombe, Producer at ARC, will be there to meet you and show you around.

If you arrive early, there is plenty of seating in the No 60 Café Bar next to the foyer serving snacks and drinks.

Tea/coffee will be served from 1.30pm in the foyer and staff will be on hand to meet you. There won’t be awkward networking, you can just grab a drink and take a seat.

Event format

1pm: (Optional) Tour of ARC

1.30pm: Refreshments served

2pm: Everyone will be invited into the auditorium. It will be laid out with rows of seats. You can sit wherever you like, and staff will be around to introduce you and help everyone find somewhere they are comfortable to sit.

Alexander Ferris (Chief Executive & Creative Director, ARC) will give a brief introduction to the space and go through any housekeeping.

The event will then be co-hosted by Annie Rigby (Unfolding Theatre) and Andy Newcombe (ARC). They will say a brief hello, and then the presentations will begin. The day will run like this:

2.10pm: Presentation Group 1
2.50pm: Comfort Break
3.05pm: Presentation Group 2
3.45pm: Break / Informal Conversations
4.30pm: Wrap Up

Whether you’re choosing to present, or just to attend – anyone who is coming along to the North East Exchange will be able to let us know ahead of the event if there is something in particular they are looking to ‘connect the dots’ with others on.

You may have something in mind you want to create, produce, fund, commission, collaborate on – there’s so many possible ways to connect, and we want to make those connections possible.

You can let us know via the option on the booking form. We’ll circulate this information a few days before the event, and display it on the day, allowing you to link up during the Extended Break.

We’ll send round a contact list afterwards, so you can follow up on all of the brilliant conversations you might have started.

How to get to ARC

There is lots of information here about travelling to ARC by public transport as well as parking and access information: How to find us

Let us know you are coming

If you would like to come, please book via Eventbrite

If you would prefer to book by telephone, please call ARC’s Box Office on 01642 525181 or by email to [email protected].

Help spread the word

This event is free to attend and open to anyone working in performance in the North East. Please share the invitation with your networks and encourage others to attend.

This North East Exchange event is funded by:

ARC Stockton
Dance City, Newcastle
Darlington Hippodrome
Gala Theatre, Durham
Gateshead Libraries, Arts & Heritage
Gosforth Civic Theatre
Highlights Rural Touring Scheme
Live Theatre, Newcastle
Queen’s Hall Arts Centre, Hexham
Stockton International Riverside Festival
Sunderland Culture
The Customs House, South Shields
Theatre Hullabaloo, Darlington