Newbiggin Maritime Centre was a hive of activity on International Women’s Day last Friday in terms of setting-up, rehearsing and eventually delivering some amazing events and activities.
The first was the unveiling of the Labour Party Wansbeck Women’s Section Banner. A year in the making – the result of a discovery and vision of the Constituency Women’s Officer, Kate Bromwich-Alexander – the banner was designed and sewn by members of the Women’s Section.
Each branch designed an image that highlighted their geographical area. To a packed cafeteria, the banner was unveiled by Kate and Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery, who spoke of the dogged and inspired persistence of women in the constituency through the ages.
The unveiling was followed by a sold out performance of Deeds Not Words, Abbott Dance Theatre’s moving and energetic dance theatre production that weaves the historical fight of the suffragettes and suffragists and highlights Northumberland suffragette Emily Wilding Davison.
Penni Blythe of Emily Inspires! said: “Horton Grange Primary School in Blyth opened the evening with an energetic and powerful presentation of their view of the suffragettes’ experiences in protesting.
“The main performance of five professional dancers incorporated a cast of community dancers and Newbiggin Choir By The Sea. Their contributions were imaginatively and astonishingly woven into those of the professionals.
“This was the sixth in the tour of Deeds Not Words, which has travelled as far as Walsall and Ormskirk over recent months.”
She added that the comments about the production included ‘I’m so glad I didn’t miss this’; ‘what an evening, powerful, engaging, skilful’ and ‘a thought-provoking performance’.
The cafeteria was full again after the performance for a wide-ranging session of questions and answers led by Penni and Kristin Kelly-Abbott (Abbott Dance Theatre’s director and choreographer).
The final performance – with yet another community and choir cast – will be at Northern Stage in Newcastle on May 21.
For tickets, call 0191 2305151 or go to www.northernstage.co.uk