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Be inspired every day with Living North
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Places to go
January 2023
Reading time 2 Minutes

Here’s how to fill January with plenty of fun

Here are our top picks for the best ways to spend your free time this month.
Seven Stories, Newcastle

Tell Tales

Join Seven Stories, Newcastle for a magical mixed-up re-telling of some of the best-loved tales by Julia Donaldson (the mind behind Stick Man, The Gruffalo and Zog). This fully interactive story time is suitable for all the family (until 8th January).

Laugh Out Loud

Local funnyman Carl Hutchinson is back with a brand new show for 2023. Following an 87-date run in 2022, he’s promising to cheer you up so you can forget all about the January blues. See him on stage at The Forum, Northallerton on 13th January.

See a Show

Two of TV’s favourite actors take to the stage at Newcastle’s Theatre Royal in The Shawshank Redemption this month. Joe Absolom, best known for his roles in EastEnders and Doc Martin, plays the wrongly convicted Andy Dufresne, with Ben Onwukwe, known to many for his long-standing role in London’s Burning, as his fellow inmate Ellis ‘Red’ Redding. Based on Stephen King’s 1982 novella titled Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption, this superb stage production examines desperation, injustice, friendship and hope behind the claustrophobic bars of a maximum-security facility. (17th–21st January).

Shawshank Redemption | Newcastle’s Theatre Royal
Out of This World

Out of This World

From 18th January for four evenings, Hull Minster will open its doors and invite you to explore and experience the building like never before. Following on from hosting Gaia, head into space as they bring the galaxies, black holes, stars and planets to Hull. Curated light art by the artists of Luxmuralis are accompanied by a bespoke soundtrack and projected onto the architectural features of the Minster.

Beautiful Ballet

It’s all about ballet this month at Darlington Hippodrome. On 26th January don’t miss Coppelia performed by Varna International Ballet, who are currently celebrating their 75th anniversary. This light-hearted tale of mistaken identity follows mischievous Swanilda, her suitor Franz and an eccentric toymaker as they are brought to life. On 27th, they perform Giselle – the most poignant of all classical ballets – and on the 29th it’s Swan Lake.

Giovanni Pernice

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Dance The Night Away

Strictly Come Dancing 2021 champion Giovanni Pernice is inviting you to join him on a journey to his Italian homeland in this new show. Joined by a team of outstanding dancers and singers from the worlds of ballroom and theatre, stunning costumes and fabulous music, this show promises a fantastic night out. Tickets are still available to see his show at Billingham Forum Theatre on 22nd or Halifax’s Victoria Theatre on 26th.

Meanwhile, the Strictly fun continues thanks to the hotly-anticipated Strictly Come Dancing Live UK arena tour featuring actor Will Mellor, Paralympic swimming champion and broadcaster Ellie Simmonds and DJ Tyler West. They’ll be joined by Strictly judges Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood and Anton Du Beke (who is appearing on the arena tour for the first time), and Janette Manrara will be your host. See the show at Leeds First Direct Arena on 26th and 27th January or Sheffield Utilita Arena on 31st January.

Get Cooking

Trying Veganuary? There’s plenty of inspiration to keep you going in the kitchen at Try these easy recipes from award-winning Yorkshire cook Katy Beskow, or from orange, tofu and chill noodles to a chickpea and olive orzo, these vegan roasting pan recipes are aways a hit. Those with a sweet-tooth might want to try these delicious vegan bakes (we’ll take one of the chocolate lava cakes, thanks).

Four Quarters

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Go Square-Eyed

Avoid the cold and stay warm inside as there’s plenty to keep you entertained on TV right now. With new seasons of our favourite series including Waterloo Road and Death in Paradise and plenty more to catch up on, you’re spoilt for choice. You’ll find more than enough inspiration in our bumper TV guide where you’ll find more of everything you need to catch up on.

Game On

Four Quarters’ first arcade bar in the North is now open on Dean Street, Newcastle. It’s packed with a variety of original arcade machines and classic gaming consoles, whether you want to beat the high score on Pac-Man or challenge your friends to a game of Mario Kart. There’s a wide range of cocktails and craft beer as well as pizza to keep you fuelled and if you enjoy it this month, watch out for their live events coming soon – expect quizzes and movie nights throughout 2023.

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