North East Hotspots: Tyne Theatre & Opera House
In the first of a regular series, we chat to the organisations making waves here in the North East. This month, we catch up with Linsey Teggart, Marketing Co-ordinator at the lovely Tyne Theatre & Opera House in Newcastle. Linsey tells us what's coming up at the theatre, why she loves the North East so much, and offers some pointers on where you can visit when you holiday in Northumberland.
Hi Linsey – lovely to meet you. Tell us a bit about your role at the Tyne Theatre…
I’m the Marketing Co-ordinator at the theatre, so it’s my job to deal with the publicity and advertising of our shows and basically convince people they should buy tickets and come see shows at Tyne Theatre & Opera House. My job consists of everything from sending press releases to the media and organising adverts with local press to keeping our website and social media up-to-date, and lots of things in-between!
Fantastic. What kind of day-to-day challenges do you face as an organisation?
People may not be aware that as of January 2015 we became an entirely independent company. The Tyne Theatre Preservation Trust who own the building set up Tyne Theatre & Opera House Limited to operate the building on a day-to-day basis. So being an independent company, we are entirely self-sufficient, receiving no funding or subsidies – all money made by the theatre goes back into the theatre to protect and restore the building. Being a Grade 1 listed Victorian building built in 1867, it’s important we protect the history of the theatre. So perhaps the biggest challenge is to keep the theatre open and ensure that people keep coming to the theatre so that future generations can continue to enjoy it! Luckily the future is looking bright as we continue to book fantastic acts and people continue to visit!
What’s the best (family-friendly) backstage story you can tell us?
It’s not so much a backstage story but recently we were visited by magician and Britain’s Got Talent star Jamie Raven (who is performing a show here on Saturday 2nd July) and he treated the staff to a private magic show. I’ve never seen magic tricks performed close up like that, and I have to say I was very impressed. He left us all speechless which is quite a rare occurrence in our office!
What do you love most about the North East?
I love the wealth of arts and culture in the North East. There’s so much on offer here that there’s really no reason to travel further South! We have some fantastic museums and art galleries, plus a wealth of theatres with so much choice on offer. We also have an amazing local music scene with some of the most passionate promoters and musicians you will ever meet. Add to that the beautiful scenery and beaches nearby - what more could you want?
If you could recommend one place in the North East for our customers to visit - other than the Tyne Theatre, of course - where would it be and why?
I’d definitely recommend Newcastle Castle – I don’t think some people realise we have a castle here, despite the give-away in the name! They’ve recently undergone a big restoration, and are putting on some fantastic events such as gothic film screenings with live soundtracks which you can enjoy in the perfect surroundings!
Any exciting plans for over the summer? What new shows do you have coming up?
Our big show for the summer is Footloose: The Musical starring Gareth Gates and Maureen Nolan which is with us from 12th to 16th July. It’s a big touring production so we’ve very excited about it and reckon it’ll have people dancing in the aisles! We’ve also got a stellar line-up of comedians coming to the theatre over the rest of the year, from Sarah Millican (who will be performing a whopping 11 shows here in 2016) to the likes of Romesh Ranganathan, Nina Conti, Rich Hall and Rob Beckett. Then before long it will be panto time again! It’s a whirlwind, but it’s incredibly exciting to be part of such a fast-moving organisation.