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Performing Research 

Alex Telfer - chair web copyPerforming Research is Cap-a-Pie’s current programme of work exploring how theatre and drama practices can enable academic research to be more democratic, more accessible and more relevant to communities.

We are keen to work with both academic researchers and community groups to facilitate communication and explore together how theatre can lead to more connected research.

Cap-a-Pie believe the combined skills of theatre makers and academics allow for appropriate and rewarding pathways for research to impact on civic society, a powerful vehicle for dissemination and a means of conducting community engaged research.

We have created an online magazine, which we would like to become a hub for artists, academics and community groups interested in working together.

Cap-a-Pie has lead a series of studio workshops at Newcastle University over a twelve week period where academics have created theatre pieces based on their research. These pieces were featured in a Scratch Night at Northern Stage at the end of March and will be the springboard for more work being created in this way in the future.

Now that this part of the project is completed we’ll be entering into a period of reflection, research and development to see how we can further refine our contribution to public engagement with Newcastle University.

This project is kindly funded by Newcastle University via the Engagement Team and supported by NICAP (Newcastle Institute for Creative Arts Practice).


‘Finnegan’s Wake’ with the Felling Irish Association
This project brings together people of all ages and backgrounds in Gateshead/South Tyneside to create a new piece of community theatre based on the Irish song Finnegan’s Wake. Participants will be facilitated by Cap-a-Pie to devise, write, produce, design, act, direct and dance their own piece of theatre with the aim of encouraging participants into long-term inter-generational cultural activity.

The production will incorporate established groups such as the award winning Kelly Hendry School of Dance, the Irish Association’s ceilidh band as well as participants who attend the ceilidh dancing classes.

Rehearsals begin in May with the show being performed on two occasions at two different venues:

Thursday July 10th, Felling Community Centre at 7.30pm
Friday July 11th, Holy Hill Social Club at 7.30pm

This project will develop a self-sustaining culture of participation in the Irish association as it’s members desire to
become more involved in cultural activity increases. By taking ownership of all aspects of this project, participants will become motivated, enthusiastic and confident that their performance of culture is valuable.