'Creating Safer LGBTQ Learning Spaces Award
LGBTQ North East Awards 2019
Best Children’s Show Award
British Theatre Guide North East - 2017
Best New Play Award
British Theatre Guide North East - 2016
Best New Writing Award
North East Theatre Guide - 2015 and 2016
Alphabetti Theatre is based in Newcastle Upon Tyne and was created by Ali Pritchard. We create, produce, and programme new, original work from emerging artists across the performing arts, championing work in Music, Theatre, Comedy and Poetry.
We strive to make theatre that is relatable and accessible to all, and are constantly looking for new ways to challenge ourselves, physically, mentally and conceptually – we believe that by challenging ourselves we inevitably challenge the audience, creating engaging and original experiences.
"Alphabetti Theatre are doing some remarkable things to keep grassroots culture alive and well in Newcastle."
Alphabetti creates, produces and programmes new original work from exciting artists across the performing arts. In 2017 we transformed the third venue space in our short history into our new home. Located on St James Boulevard Alphabetti is Newcastle’s newest and smallest producing theatre.
We house a flexible 75 seater or 150 standing performance space, a café / bar (open 5pm – 11pm Tuesday to Thursday and 5pm to midnight Friday and Saturday), a bookshop, a rehearsal space, a prop and costume workshop/store and artist studios.
Alphabetti was not opened for business, money, or personal gain but for the necessity of a fringe venue in Newcastle and the North East, ensuring the development and improvement of the ecology of the performing arts in the region.
We receive the occasional Grant for the Arts from the Arts Council and other charitable organisations however the majority of our income to keep us running comes from our bar, so when you visit us make sure you sample our fine offerings!
We have a number of opportunities to get involved in such as performing in the space for theatre companies, writers, directors, poets, comedians and musicians.
MEET THE TEAM
ARTISTIC & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Ali's main focus is on programming, creating and producing our productions and seasons of work. He also overseas the running of the whole charity delegating and working with our incredible small team who go back and beyond to continue evolving the theatre.
In 2012 Ali founded Alphabetti Theatre at the age of 22, making him one of the UK’s youngest artistic directors running a venue. He has a BA honours in Drama & Scripting from Northumbria University, and a Higher Diploma in Contemporary Vocals from The Academy of Contemporary Music. Ali is a visiting lecturer at a number of higher educational organisations across the North East, and in 2013 following a yearlong graduate fellowship at Northumbria University, he won the “Best Postgraduate Lecturer” award.
Under Ali’s leadership, Alphabetti have become a crucial part of the arts ecology in the region. Alphabetti is now a fully registered charity and has just secured a 10 year lease for their current premise a 75 seater venue with its own bar, rehearsal room, studios and workshop. With their bold Pay What You Feel ticketing scheme, which is unique for the city - they have been able to engage with a new and diverse audience. The majority of their yearlong programme of 280 – 300 performances are part of this scheme. Following the first full year in the venue Alphabetti welcomed 10,000 audience members and worked with 1,100 artists.
Ali has been involved in every Alphabetti Theatre produced production, some of his credits include: Teeth In Eggcups (2012), Three Shorts (2013), The Frights (2015 & 2016), The Rooms (2016 & 2017), Bacon Knees & Sausage Fingers (2016 & 2019), Trolley Boy (2018) and Walter (2017 & 2018). He is also producer, and writer of How did I Get To This Point? (2014), How Did We Get To This Point? (2016) and children’s book Keeping Time (2018). Ali is currently writing a new festive production with members from the national homeless charity Crisis Skylight.
Esther graduated from Newcastle University in 2015 with an MA in English Literature 1500-1900, and started volunteering and working with Alphabetti soon after. She took on the role of Executive Producer earlier this year, and is currently producing Alphabetti’s September show, Three Shorts. She has worked with QI, Seven Stories, Encyclopaedia Britannica and the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust to satisfy her research needs, and will not shut up about the cool thing she’s just read. When she isn’t working, you’ll find her dancing Lindy Hop with Newcastle group Swing Tyne, buried in a book, or singing to the dog.
Alex has a BA in Drama and Applied Theatre and a MA in Theatre and Performance both from Northumbria University. He has worked as a drama facilitator delivering workshops to children and mental health service users with organisations such as Gateshead Clubhouse, Seven Stories and Gateshead Carers. He is now the proud General Manager of Alphabetti Theatre, overseeing all elements of the venue; theatre, rehearsal space, bar & café. He was previously Assistant Producer at Curious Arts, a North East based Queer Arts organisation.
AUDIENCE DEVELOPMENT & RETENTION COORDINATOR
Si is a stand-up comedian and writer who has also held a number of other important roles within North East culture. Alongside performing at the biggest comedy clubs up and down the country, he also serves as Events & Marketing Coordinator for Newcastle Castle and writes for a variety of magazines and websites on the North East cultural scene. Having served as NARC Magazine's Web Editor for a number of years, he has a real love of the North East and Newcastle (though he's a Hebburn boy through and through) and has even written several articles for places like Buzzfeed about this wonderful city that managed to go viral. As a stand-up comic, he has performed on Alphabetti Theatre stages regularly since the very early days, and even debuted his solo show 'Get Lush' with Alphabetti in 2019.
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT COORDINATOR
Liv is a theatre-maker & community arts coordinator who has been working in the region for 4 years. In 2018, she became the Community Engagement coordinator for Alphabetti Theatre where she has coordinated community projects, ‘Walter’ (2018) in partnership with The Discovery Museum & ‘Write Something Junior’ (2019). Her role is to ensure that everyone has access to the theatre promoting diversity and inclusivity. Through working with Liv, we have developed our connections with community groups & organisations allowing more people to engage with Alphabetti.
Alongside Alphabetti, she is a freelance facilitator working with Equal Arts, Live Youth Theatre, Seven Stories, Unfolding Theatre and Open Clasp. She also runs her own company, Woven Nest, which is a theatre company for older people with dementia.
Eilis began working at Alphabetti after completing a two month placement working as Assistant Producer. Eilis graduated from Northumbria University with a degree in English Literature and has gone on to study Cultural and Creative Industries Management MA at Northumbria University. After many years performing, Eilis's interests have moved into producing and is looking forward to taking on exciting projects in the future.
LAUREN, NICOLE, TOMMY & EILIS
The General Assistants are the life blood of Alphabetti, they all have their own specialist skills and are essential to our continued improvement. Their main role is to ensure the bar and cafe is running smoothly however as per their job titles they generally assist across the venue - in tech, box office, programming, marketing, engagement and anything else that needs doing!
Chloe moved from the North West in order to expand her knowledge and experience of arts venues, after studying BA Theatre and Performance at the University of Leeds. She is ticket office manager at Dance City and in our opinion one of the most exciting freelance producers in the North East.
Chloe has worked with Alphabetti on a freelance basis since 2015 - producing Bacon Knees & Sausage Fingers, TrolleyBoy, Christmas Cabaret, The Rooms & The Frights to name but a few.
ASSOCIATE LITERARY PRODUCER
Ben has been passionate about arts, culture, and social change since a taste of theatre transformed his life as a teenager. Becoming a culture convert he trained at Rose Bruford College, received a Masters in Film & Television from Westminster University, and studied for PhD at Goldsmiths College.
His career has taken in writing for stage and screen, filmmaking, journalism, managing supported housing and youth citizenship programmes, numerous community arts projects, teaching film, and running services for disadvantaged children and young people. He has also written two critically acclaimed books, and produced a popular regional breakfast radio show.
Ben is Executive Producer for City of Dreams leading a 10 year mission for NewcastleGateshead Cultural Venues, making Tyneside "best place to be young" by engaging everyone under 25 in culture activity. Ben has worked with Alphabetti on a freelance basis since 2014 - he currently leads up Alphabetti's Arts Council England funded Just Write scheme.
Hello I am a dog, so apologies for any typo's - typing with paws is tough! My role is all encompassing - I check the comfort of all seating areas, help Becky focus lights by sitting in the bright patch, test the drinking water at least three times a day & I garden when the weather is nice. I like to greet people when they enter - sometimes I do get a little bit too exuberant in my welcoming and give a big bark - I can only apologise for that - I forget people are scared of me as I look like a Land Seal / Hairy Pig. Please just give me a stroke and I'll calm down again I am just so excited you're here to visit!
Email: I don't have one but I sometimes am on instagram - @pritchandpooch