THIRSK-based charity Rural Arts has launched another spell of live performances that will be going on tour at village venues across the region.

Over the Spring, ON Tour – the rural touring scheme for North Yorkshire and the Tees Valley – returns with seven different productions making their way to 16 venues across 3,500 square miles.

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Natasha Glew, who programmes the performances with over 50 volunteers across the county, said: “We’re thrilled to be kicking off our ON Tour season with local favourites Hoglets Theatre.

“Their magical tale The Sleep Pirates, for primary and pre-school children features larger-than-life characters, puppets, dancing, song and immersive storytelling." 

In March, Northumbrian folk duo The Brothers Gillespie will perform their traditional and original songs, rich with the sounds of sibling harmony, guitars, flute, fiddle and mandolin.

Will & Co.’s Bard in the Yard production of King Leonardo will see audiences jump in to help William Shakespeare overcome his plague quarantine-induced writer's block and create a roller-coaster ride of classic monologues and laughs.

The tour scheme also hosts Hull-born singer-songwriter and guitarist Katie Spencer, whose songs are imbued with the gritty landscapes or her home, and whose sound is influenced by Joni Mitchell, James Taylor and John Martyn.

The Northern Echo: King Leonardo, a Bard in the Yard production by Will & CoKing Leonardo, a Bard in the Yard production by Will & Co

Full English is an award-winning play on family, solidarity and loving across boundaries produced by actor and co-author Natalie Davies and theatre company Bent Architect.

The play uses first-hand stories, providing a poignant, funny, and life-affirming homage to the strength of women.

With 14 years of experience rocking and rolling their swing jive repertoire, West Yorkshire five-piece band The 309s have had crowds dance days and nights away to their intoxicating beat at festivals and gigs around the world.

Flamenco and Scottish dance performance 6 Feet 3 Shoes from Slanjayvah Danza finishes the season with a flair.

Their heart-warming celebration of friendship across borders features stomping rhythms, tender moments and plenty of humour.

To see the full season of performances and book online, visit the Rural Arts website.

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