Event Schedule


Monday 30 April – Thursday 3 May: Trashed Organ Presents The Festival of Belonging: Fringe Programme

The Fringe Programme will bring together some of the North East’s most inspiring writers, musicians, and artists for a four-day spectacle of words and music. Buy a Fringe Programme pass and attend all the Trashed Organ Fringe Programme events for £15 / £12 concessions from Trashed Organ. Note that tickets for all Trashed Organ events can be purchased from this link.

  • Monday 30 April; The Central, Gateshead, 8pm – 11pm: We’re All Mad Here – A dynamic night of poetry from Stevie Ronnie, Claire Askew, Andrew McMillan, and Lizzie Whyman with music from Fiona’s Jazz Express and Firas Kirala. Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions. 

  • Tuesday 1 May; The Bridge Hotel, 2pm – 4pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Christy Ducker, Putting Yourself on the Map – In this workshop, read, write, and explore the theme of belonging with local poet Christy Ducker. Tickets: FREE, booking is essential. 

  • Tuesday 1 May; The Bridge Hotel, 8pm – 11pm: Castles, Collieries and Coastline – Celebrate the the culture and history of the North East with Christy Ducker, Pippa Little, and Tom Kelly. Plus Darren Richard Carlaw and Stepaway Magazine present an exploration of North East flanerie with Ira Lightman, Bob Beagrie, Ian Davidson, and Keith Parker. Music from The Lake Poets. Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions. 

  • Wednesday 2 May; The Central, Gateshead, 2pm – 4pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Tony Williams, A Long Way from Home – A poetry workshop exploring belonging and distance. Tickets: FREE, booking is essential. 

  • Wednesday 2 May; The Central, Gateshead, 7pm – 8pm: Kalagora – Splicing poetry with theatre, Siddhartha Bose journeys from the street surrealism of Mumbai to London’s East End via Manhattan on Millennium night. “An extraordinary odyssey” – Julian Sands, BBC Radio 4. Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions. 

  • Wednesday 2 May; The Central, Gateshead, 8pm – 11pm: Anywhere I Lay My Head – An evening for celebrating the outsider with poetry from Tony Williams, Sheree Mack, Daniel Hardisty and Susannah Pickering. Music from Rob Heron of The Tea Pad Orchestra. Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions. 

  • Thursday 3 May; The Bridge Hotel, 8pm – 11pm: I Don’t Think We’ve Met? – The final night of the Fringe Programme featuring new collaborations with musicians, writers, and artists exploring ideas of belonging. Music from Fiona’s Jazz Express and the chance to collaborate with someone new by signing up for a Trashed Date. Tickets: £5 / £4 concessions. 


Friday 4 May – Sunday 6 May: NCLA Festival of Belonging Weekend Programme

Tickets can be purchased from the NCLA Webstore or the the Tyneside Cinema box office (for film screenings) or for more information, please contact Melanie Birch at melanie.birch@ncl.ac.uk or 0191 222 7619. Alternatively, a weekend ticket can be purchased for £25, which allows entry to all Weekend Programme events. Note that the Creative Writing Workshops in the Weekend Programme are not included in the weekend ticket and must be purchased separately. 


  •  Friday 4 May; Tyneside Cinema, 8pm – 11pm: Sapphire in conversation with Jackie Kay: Film Screening of Precious – Sapphire in conversation with Festival host Jackie Kay followed by a screening of Precious, the Academy Award winning adaptation of Sapphire’s novel Push. You’re guaranteed a thought-provoking discussion from the novelist Sapphire and Jackie Kay, a poet, prose writer, and professor of Creative Writing. Tickets: £10 / £8 concessions. Available from either the NCLA directly or Tyneside Cinema at 0845 217 9909 or their website

  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 11am – 9pm: A Place Around the Hearth: Art Exhibition Preview – A Place Around the Hearth is a visual art exhibition by clients of Freedom from Torture North East, a charity that supports victims of torture. The exhibition opens at Minsteracres Retreat House in September 2012. Be the first to see the exhibition from Iraqi painter Ausama Khalil and Ethiopian sculptor Fetlework Tesfaye, two artists whose work explores their experiences of belonging, unbelonging, and surviving the margins. Tickets: FREE. 

  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 10am – 12pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Helen Oyeyemi, The ‘I’ That Tells a Story – We’re delighted to welcome winner of the 2010 Somerset Maugham Award  and novelist Helen Oyeyemi as resident writer at NCLA during April and May. The workshop will look at how claims relating to family, vocation, or surroundings influence the sense of self that a narrator communicates. The workshop will explore the ways in which the ‘I’ within a story may temporarily abandon itself, its era, its gender, its location, and what effects this creates. Tickets:  £15 / £12 concessions. 
  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 10am – 12pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Linda France, Coming Home – Led by poet Linda France, this workshop will explore ways in to the poetry of a place as a dynamic, embodied form. Linda France’s poetry collections include The Simultaneous Dress, The Toast of the Kit Cat Club, and You are Her. Linda was Leverhulme Artist in Residence at Moorbank Botanic Garden, University of Newcastle, 2010/11. Tickets: £15 / £12 concessions. 

  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 1.30pm – 3pm: Bernardine Evaristo, Daljit Nagra and Helen Oyeyemi – The writers will be appearing in a discussion about the issues of identity and displacement within their works. Tickets: £6 / £4 concessions / £2 Newcastle University students. 

  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 4pm – 5.30pm: Out of Bounds Anthology Launch –  From Aberdeen to the Isle of Wight, Out of Bounds takes the reader on a sensory journey, providing a vivid alternative map of Britain as viewed by its black and Asian poets. Featured poets include John Agard, Wole Soyinka and Jackie Kay. Also including Raman Mundair, Kayo Chingonyi and Sheree Mack. Tickets: £6 / £4 concessions / £2 Newcastle University students. 

  • Saturday 5 May; Culture Lab, 7.30pm – 9pm: Tahmima Anam and Hari Kunzru – As part of the event, Tahmima Anam will be announcing the winner of the NCLA International Short Story Competition 2012. The competition explores the experience of international students living and studying in the UK, giving international students an opportunity to assess and translate their experience creatively. Tahmima Anam was born in Bangladesh and her first novel, A Golden Age, was shortlisted for The Guardian First Book Award and the Costa First Novel Prize, and was the winner of the 2008 Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best First Book. Her second novel, The Good Muslim, was published by Canongate in May 2011. Hari Kunzru lives in New York City and has written The Impressionist, Transmission, and My Revolution. He is the recipient of the Somerset Maugham Award and Granta named him one of its twenty best young British novelists. Tickets: £6 / £4 concessions / £2 Newcastle University students. 

  • Sunday 6 May; Culture Lab, 11am – 1pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Gillian Allnutt, ‘Unbelonging’ – This writing workshop will explore the place of the outsider and experiences of ‘unbelonging’. Gillian Allnutt has published seven collections of poetry. Nantucket and the Angel and Lintel were both shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize and Lintel was a Poetry Book Society Choice. She has recently held a writing residency with Freedom from Torture (North East) working with people who have experienced torture within their home countries. Tickets: £15 / £12 concessions. 

  • Sunday 6 May; Culture Lab, 11am – 1pm: Creative Writing Workshop: Lisa Matthews, The Rooted Space – The workshop will focus on identity and sexuality, using a variety of materials to help create a narrative space that is open to exploring diverse voices and stories about belonging. It will be led by local poet and writer, Lisa Matthews, who runs the creative agency The/Poetry/Fold. She has also founded and managed a variety of LGBTIQ initiatives including ProudWords and How Gay are Your Genes? Tickets: £15 / £12 concessions. 

  • Sunday 6 May; Tyneside Cinema, 2pm – 5pm: Tina Gharavi in conversation with Jackie Kay: Film Screening of I Am Nasrine – Tina Gharavi, filmmaker, academic, and director of Bridge + Tunnel will be in conversation with Jackie Kay following a screening of her recent feature film, I Am Nasrine. Set in modern day Tehran and the UK, the film follows the paths of siblings Nasrine and Ali, from their comfortable Iranian home to lives as exiles in North East England. Tickets: £8 / £6.95 concessions and students. Available from either the NCLA directly or Tyneside Cinema at 0845 217 9909 or their website

  • Sunday 6 May; Culture Lab Radio: Radio Plays: Iranian Voices – Iranian Voices is a collection of radio plays based on real life stories from Iran, created to make voices from Iran and the Iranian diaspora audible across the globe and give strength to the struggle for democracy in Iran. For more information on the schedule for the day and to listen online, please see culturelabradio.ncl.ac.uk. Tickets: FREE (listen online). 
Venue Information:
The Central
Half Moon Lane
Gateshead, NE8 2AN
The Bridge Hotel
Castle Square
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1RQ
Tyneside Cinema 
10 Pilgrim Street
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 6QG
Culture Lab
Newcastle University
Grand Assembly Rooms
King’s Walk
Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 7RU

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