The Sage Gateshead - the region's innovative new home for music and musical discovery - is scheduled to open on 17 December 2004.
The building, designed by Sir Norman Foster, will programme around 420 performances a year, and will encompass all types of music, from Be-Bop and Bhangra to Hip-Hop, Jazz and Orchestral.
The building itself comprises a 25-room music education centre, a recording studio, a music information centre, two performance spaces, one rehearsal space, an entertainment suite, five bars, a café, and a brasserie, all linked by a spectacular glazed concourse designed for informal music-making.
Within The Sage Gateshead will be the Music Information Centre 'ExploreMusic
', which will be run by Gateshead Council's Libraries Service. This new service will provide access to music books, magazines and online resources, and free internet access. Specialist staff will be on hand to answer any music question posed.
The opening will take the form of a full weekend of music performance and participation opportunities (5pm Friday 17 - 10pm Sunday 19 December), allowing the public to listen to many of the different musical styles on offer in the building, and join in the music-making.
Musicians involved include:
- Northern Sinfonia with Music Director Thomas Zehetmair
- Innovative vocal ensemble I Fagiolini
- Folk musicians Kathryn Tickell, Lena Willemark and Alistair Anderson
- Jazz performers Andy Sheppard, Juliet Roberts and Alex Wilson
- World music favourites The Baghdaddies
- Newly signed Newcastle rock band Maximo Park
- Northeast DJ pioneers Name
... and more!
They will be joined by a whole range of groups from The Sage Gateshead's huge Learning and Participation programme including The Sage Gateshead's youth ensembles Young Sinfonia, Jambone, Folkestra, Steel Quake and Boom Dang.
There will also be opportunities for the public to participate and to watch others involved in music-making and to enjoy roving musicians and entertainers on the concourse and nearby outdoor spaces.
Tickets for the opening weekend will go on sale on 27 September from The Sage Gateshead's Box Office 0870 703 4555.
Tickets for the full programme will be available on 0870 703 4555 from 1 October.