2019 Line up and headline sponsor announced

The Late Shows is sponsored this year for the first time by The Biscuit Factory, the UK’s biggest independent art, craft and design gallery in Newcastle’s cultural quarter.

The award-winning late-night free culture crawl - featuring open art studios, music, performance, food, galleries, museums and a host of the most bizarre and intriguing interactive events - is facilitated by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums (TWAM) and features 60 cultural venues staged across Newcastle and Gateshead taking part from 7-11pm on 17 and 18 May 2019.

Attracting over 35,000 visits each year for the two day event – now in its 13th year – The Late Shows is a well-established part of the cultural calendar in the North East, and allows participants to curate their own experience from the vast choice on offer.

Rachel Brown, General Manager of The Biscuit Gallery, said:

"We are delighted to be headline sponsors of The Late Shows and incredibly proud to be flying the flag for independent creative businesses in the North East. The Late Shows is a real celebratory showcase of our collective cultural offer and has become both an annual institution for so many as well as an amazing introduction to the arts for many more besides.

“As a local cultural business we are motivated to engage and encourage interaction with the arts within our region and beyond which is why supporting The Late Shows for us is so important.

“I hope that visitors use this monumental event as a catalyst for future trips to the venues involved and by doing so, continue supporting our great cultural community here in the North East."

Bill Griffiths Head of Programmes at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, said:

“It’s wonderful to be able to work with the Biscuit Factory; being such avid champions of culture they fit very well within the innovative, exciting and truly original landscape of The Late Shows.”

Highlights for 2019:

Friday 17 May – Ouseburn only

The Biscuit Factory will present Glitter-arty, where contemporary art and literature meet all things disco. They will be unveiling their Open Contemporary Young Artist Award show, visitors can catch the closing weekend of comedian Vic Reeves' exhibition, and Forum Books will host a silent disco with a book-inspired playlist and bookshop pop up. There will be free glitter face painting and themed cocktails.

  • Northern Print in the Ouseburn have a special Late Shows commissioned installation, Nicole Polonsky's Lighting Up Time, a dynamic interactive installation inspired by the silent film era.
  • Historical actors the Time Bandits will re-create Queen Anne’s court in the streets of the Ouseburn (there may be duelling).
  • Explore Lime Street and Cobalt studios.
  • Get luminous face paint at Ouseburn Farm and hunt each other with UV torches.

Saturday 18 May only – Newcastle, Gateshead and Quayside

  • Dippy after dark – it is the Great North Museum: Hancock’s first day (18 May) showcasing this enormous skeletal beast from the Natural History Museum #dippyontour. Booking required for this event.
  • First timers Dynamix Skate Park in Gateshead will be offering free taster sessions of BMX, skateboarding wall trampoline and aerial circus.
  • Gateshead Central Library will come alive with GemArts Bollywood dance workshops, Thought Foundation cardboard city, live music, a LEGO pit, pop up arts market and more. There will be artist led demonstrations and visitors can get creative with animation and photomontage.
  • Side Gallery – more exclusive commissions for the Late Shows from Nicole Polonsky.
  • Commercial Union House - six floors of art, music, performance and activities to encounter.
  • The lower chambers of the Newcastle’s Castle Keep will be transformed into a medieval tavern complete with storytelling and medieval entertainment, rogues, gamblers and ne’er do wells.


On both nights there will also be Twi-Lates from 4-7pm, with events targeted at 12-17 year olds as independent visitors or with their families.

  • Seven Stories – visitors can singalong at Beccy Owen’s Pop-Up Choir - a vibrant, welcoming and fun-filled singing workshop featuring a fine selection of unforgettable 80s hits.
  • Alphabetti Theatre – there will be live music and poetry in the café area plus Improv comedy games from 6-7pm.
  • Dance City (5pm-7pm) – are providing free taster sessions in ballet and contemporary dance. There’s also the chance to see professionals from a North East dance company rehearse in the theatre.

About The Biscuit Factory

Housed in a former Victorian warehouse, The Biscuit Factory is the UK’s largest independent art, craft and design gallery located in the heart of Newcastle’s cultural quarter. Established in 2002, the commercial gallery exhibits work from more than 250 artists every season, encompassing a contemporary mix of paintings, prints, glass, ceramics, sculpture and design-led homewares. It also boasts one of the largest collections of handmade jewellery in Newcastle.

Visitors can also enjoy the gallery’s in-house café, The Factory Kitchen; Sunday lunch at adjoining Artisan restaurant; or make use of the venue’s hireable spaces for private events, including its purpose-built function suite, The Biscuit Room.

The Biscuit Factory is open seven days a week 10am to 5pm and admission is free. Web: | Tel: 0191 261 1103 | Twitter @Biscuit_Factory

Maintained by Harry Bailey