New programme takes arts and theatre across county

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Highlights Rural Touring Scheme has announced a new season of shows heading to village halls across the county.

As national touring companies from across all corners of the UK hit the rural roads of Northumberland, village halls are gearing up to promote and host their shows, bringing communities together for a great night out in the village.

Theatre, music, storytelling, poetry, puppetry and children’s shows are all on the menu, as well as a warm and friendly atmosphere in which to enjoy them.

Highlights starts the autumn season on a high note having been shortlisted for Most Supportive Touring Scheme in the first awards celebrating rural touring in the UK. Partner promoters at Felton Village Hall were also shortlisted for Most Welcoming Village Hall.

Theatre shows this autumn explore varied themes.

There is the epic story of rural struggle told in Harvest, a comedic murder mystery unfolds in The Alzheimer’s Whodunnit, a dying wish of a Viking burial is granted in Team Viking, and Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson are being spied on in Agent of Influence.

Northumberland’s own NTC presents two new shows. The first is the adaptation of Dickens’ historical novel Barnaby Rudge, followed by a pre-Christmas treat for families, with The Princess and the Goblin to round off the season.

After a 10-year wait, Scotland’s Puppet State Theatre is back with its new family show – an enchanting adaptation of JRR Tolkien’s short story Leaf by Niggle.

Younger audiences can enjoy the magic of puppetry in Cardboard Carnival and The Steadfast Tin Soldier, the latter is touring to first-time promoter Thropton Village Hall.

Music offers a cross-culture, cross-genre mix from acoustic folk and Harlem Swing to Flamenco fusion and Canadian indie-folk.

With 23 performances to choose from, Northumberland audiences can look forward to a good night out on their doorstep this autumn.

Visit www.highlightsnorth.co.uk