November Club is a performing arts company based in Morpeth, Northumberland. We make playful and inspiring theatre and installations, telling unexpected stories of all sorts of people and places.
Sharing memories, hopes and dreams is part of what we do. Weaving together historical and contemporary themes, November Club’s work is always made in collaboration with local people whose own tales become central to our projects.
Our productions are all based around a certain place, a local legend or a piece of fascinating history or heritage. We work with people of all different backgrounds to gather stories, thoughts, wishes and wonderings, and delve into archives and museums, and speak to local historians.
We have heard and told stories of bookworms and bakers, dreams of skateparks and elephants, performing ropes and wobbling jellies, more prosperous towns and troubled villages, of closing down factories and salmon fishing, evacuees and theatrical aristocrats…
November Club brings communities together, to create memorable shared experiences, explore new ideas, meet new people and most importantly, to make new fun.
Past projects have included promenades around a country garden with Capability Brown, an invitation to be a guest at the magnificent Wallington Hall, a 900m long performing rope winding through Berwick Upon Tweed, and a theatrical performance in Newcastle Theatre Royal, in which the action happened everywhere but on the stage!
To begin, we visit the place where we will make the work, talk with people, collect their stories and memories and delve through archives. We visit local groups, talk to residents, run sessions in schools and have informal chats. We seek out people from all different backgrounds and ages and bring together stories from all across the community. We revisit and collaborate with local people right up to the final performance, where many will take part, sometimes as performers, sometimes as volunteers, sometimes as audience members.
November Club community arts projects and performances are held in the places where they were created, usually outside of traditional theatre settings and feature a mixture of professional cast and local talent. We’ve run projects in cattle auction marts and country manors, museums and high streets.
Wherever we work, people from local communities usually get involved: whether they are schoolchildren, teachers, army or navy cadets, local potters, girl guides, WI members, bakers, artists, musicians, youth groups or local historians. The communities and local people we work with are intrinsic to the local performing arts and community arts projects we make.
Our projects usually draw on the talents of lots of different artists, such as writers, musicians, poets, actors and film makers.
November Club is based in Northumberland and much of our work is made and shown in the region.
We work indoors and outdoors, in places that are pertinent to the stories we are telling or communities we are working with. Rarely do we work in traditional theatre or arts venue settings. Recently our productions have been presented at National Trust Wallington (Cambo, Northumberland), The Literary and Philosophical Society (Newcastle) and Newcastle Central Station, The Northern Poetry Library (Morpeth), in a horse wagon travelling to villages across South East Northumberland and on the streets of Berwick upon Tweed.
Over the years we have worked in many different heritage settings, particularly National Trust properties, to bring the different stories of these places to life in unexpected ways.