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Fri 1 - Sun 3 May

Radio play available for download across the festival from 6pm each day 

Age 18+ See below content warning

The North Sea: A (radio) play in three pints 

By Nick Hegreberg, performed by Brian Lonsdale and Karen Traynor

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UK online premiere
Available during festival from 6pm each day

The North Sea: A (radio) play in three pints is a new collaboration between Norwegian-based writer Nick Hegreberg and a stellar team of creatives from North East England.


Performed by local actors Brian Lonsdale and Karen Traynor, and directed by Northern Stage Associate Director Mark Calvert, with sound design by Nick John Williams, The North Sea has been realised for the digital space as a radio play over ‘three pints’. You can download and listen to a new episode over each day of the festival, as the play summons up all the atmosphere of a North East pub.


It’s a vivid performance unravelling a couple’s love affair- from first clumsy pub encounter to a magical meeting decades later.

The North Sea is the culmination of a NATUR residency supported by SICC Productions, produced by CURATED PLACE. NATUR residencies connect the cultural heritage and creativity of the countries of the North Atlantic and the North Sea.

Image: Beccy Owen

Content warning
Contains strong language, sexual content and may trigger as it mentions rape, physical violence and death of a child and partner.
Ticket information and accessing events online

Due to Covid-19, this year's GIFT festival has been re-imagined online providing a digital space for us to come together and experience work and participate in virtual discussion events and workshop activities.

Tickets are limited and Pay What You Decide. You can make a donation to support this year’s festival here


EU_flag to be added to North Sea image.j
Descriptive text 

PDF available on request 

Artist biographies


Nick Hegreberg

Nick Hegreberg (b. 1972) is a Norwegian writer and educator. His debut as a screenwriter was the critically acclaimed feature film Tough Guys (2013). In addition to writing, Nick also runs workshops on film, creativity and creative writing for kids and youth

Mark Calvert

Mark is Northern Stage’s Associate Director and leads on programming Stage 3 and Northern Stage's Talent Development offer.

Brian Lonsdale

Brian Lonsdale is an actor based in Newcastle upon Tyne whose theatre credits include Othello at Tobacco Factory, Noises Off at Northern Stage, Martyr at Unicorn Theatre, Warhorse in the West End, Pitmen Painters at Live Theatre Newcastle/National Theatre/Broadway NYC.

Karen Traynor

Karen Traynor is a Scottish actor and theatre director, who’s lived in North East England  for 12 years. Karen’s theatre credits include Brand (RSC), Rendevous (Live Theatre), The Lady in The Van (Hull Truck), Up & Out Christmas Sprout, The Borrowers, A Dolls House, The Goblin Who Saved Christmas, Tattercoats, Pinnochio, Play, Edmond (Northern Stage), Beauty Sleeps (The Young Vic), Beauty and the Beast (Edinburgh Lyceum), Cinderella (Theatre By The Lake), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Taming of the Shrew (Princeton Rep, NJ) and Twelfth Night, The Odd Couple (Perth Theatre).

Nick John Williams

Nick John Williams is a sound designer, composer and artist based in Whitley Bay, UK. He has designed for theatre, film, multi-media and interactive installations, and also facilitates creative workshops. Nick completed a BA in Music and Performance Technology in 2001, and a PhD at Newcastle University in 2013.

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