THEY say school days are the best days of your life, and at one North-East theatre, audiences can experience the highs and lows all over again.

Tickets are now on sale for the Gala Theatre’s next production, Teechers, which is set to entertain people at the Durham City venue from Monday, May 6 to Saturday, May 11 May next year.

Written by acclaimed playwright John Godber, Teechers is a fast-moving comedy and a must-see show for anyone who has endured life in a modern secondary school.

Just like the Gala’s productions of Educating Rita, Talking Heads and Two, the play will be produced, designed and directed in County Durham. It will also see the return of director Tom Wright and theatre designer Hannah Sibai to the theatre following their success with Two.

This time around, the pair will bring to life a play within a play, which follows three school leavers as they rehearse and perform an end of term tribute about their time in secondary school.

Following an idealistic new teacher during his perilous first days at a local comprehensive school, their play is based on their own drama teacher who ignites their passion for the stage.

There are many familiar characters; from the bully feared by pupils and teachers alike, to the kid who never brings his PE kit, to the headteacher whose main priority is the annual Gilbert and Sullivan production.

Tom, whose mother was a drama teacher in York before she retired, identifies with the plot.

He says: “As I was growing up I got to watch the difference my mum made to young people’s lives. This was a school where the only potential employers who bothered to turn up to careers day were the Armed Forces and fast food chains.

“The world told these young people again and again that their lives didn’t matter, and there was my mother, telling them that they did matter, and opening up a world of imagination and self-expression.

“Now more than ever before drama and the arts in general are under attack in the state education system. This play is all about that; valuing each student and giving the gift of imagination, in a way which is playful and frequently hilarious. I can’t wait to get stuck into rehearsals.”

Hannah adds: “After designing Two for the Gala earlier this year I am looking forward to working with the team again on another production. Like Two, Teechers brings an interesting array of characters to the stage using clever multi-roling, which will be great fun to design. This will be the seventh show I've worked on with Tom and I can't wait to share our ideas.”

John Godber is the third most performed playwright in the UK, behind William Shakespeare and Alan Ayckbourn, and is renowned for his observational comedy.

Written in 1984, Teechers is still thoroughly modern and as fresh and relevant as when it was first created.

Performances will be held at 7.30pm from Monday, May 6 to Saturday, May 11, apart from on Wednesday when the evening show starts at 6pm. Additional performances will also take place at 1pm on Tuesday and Thursday.

Tickets are priced from £10 to £16 and can be booked online at or by calling 03000 266 600. Anyone who books tickets before January 31 can secure seats for £10 across all performances.