Since the installation of embedded trapeze bars in the Rehearsal Room, (April 2004), the Buddle Arts Centre North Wing has become a centre for aerial, street performance and new circus work. The following individuals and companies have become key players in a developing network.

Bare Toed: The Bare Toed Company consist of three core members – Jo Templey, Rachel Kurtz and Lynn Campbell. All three have a background in dance and gathered together to create a company that would make interactive work for very young audiences.

In 2004 Bare Toed made an application to A.C.E. North East and, using support in kind provided via the North Wing as partnership funding, were allocated funding towards the cost of producing Bare Toed in the Garden – a performance and workshop project for under fives and their parents/carers/teachers. Bare Toed in the Garden, incorporating live performance from musician Keith Mills, has proved to be a popular and enduring project and continues to be toured around the region. For further information about the company please contact Rachel Kurtz

Bell & Bullock: Bell & Bullock are Karen Bell and Dafe Bullock. They are performers and teachers of street theatre, circus skills, physical theatre and clowning. Their training has included the School for Fools and Physical Theatre courses at Fool Time/Circomedia. They have been performing nationally since 1991 and specialise in festival and outdoor show and "walk-a-bout" work.

In 2005 they used the North Wing Projects Unit, (and £5000 from A.C.E. North East) to create ‘Time Trouble - a show and "drive-about" piece that uses an elaborate Time Machine, adapted from a mobility scooter, as a central device. It premiered at the Projects Unit and went on to tour nationally including Glastonbury Festival, Lewisham Peoples Day and Alnwick Gardens.

In 2006 they have successfully applied for a further £5,000 from A.C.E. North East , along with £1,000 from Gateshead M.B.C. and support in kind from the Projects Unit to develop the piece as a Theatre in Education project.

Bell and Bullock teach under the name of Eezy Trapeezy Circus Theatre Workshops. More information about the company and their activity can be accessed via their own web site.

Dream State Circus: Dream State Circus are Jacob and Sophie McGrath - an internationally acclaimed performance duo who spend half the year based in the Southern Hemisphere and half the year in the Western Hemisphere. Over the past two years they have won the following awards; In September 2004 – having previously toured under the name Fairy Fire – Dream State used the Buddle Arts Centre North Wing to officially launch themselves as Dream State Circus; a reinvention that recognised that the range of their work required a change of name and identity.

Dream State have proved themselves to be a vibrant presence in the North Wing and in 2005 Blackbox Arts & Media invited them to become Associate Artists of the company. As well as creating new work for performance at the Mouth of the River Festival, Dream State also organised the Hip-Hat-Hooray Festival that bought the best street acts from the Edinburgh Festival to perform for two days in Northumberland Street, Newcastle, in August of last year. For further information about Dream State please visit their web site .

Frayed Knot is the working title of Vicki Carlin and Edd Muir, previously known as Pantalon de Flambe. Their company has changed due to progressive work at Circus Maniacs in Bristol, following a grant from A.C.E. North East.

Currently, Frayed Knot are specialising in aerial and acrobatic work, with a strong interest in Chinese Pole, Tissu and Tight-wire. Following their training, they have become heavily involved in the running of Circus Maniacs Circus School including work in Berlin and Paris with the European Volunteer Service and the Network of International Circus Exchange. Frayed Knot also hope to go to China in the near future and strengthen links to the North East on a international and national level.

Frayed Knot are the organisation who have taken responsibility for the newly established Circus Space in the North Wing. For further information about that resource and how to access it please email the company. edd_vicki@yahoo.co.uk

Hang: Hang's main focus is in exploring aerial dance in performance and in experimental improvised collaborations with other artist/disciplines/media and in developing new aerial skills and including site specific performances inn their repertoire. The core aerialists include Helen Averley (who has 12 years experience as circus performer and tutor and who is a visual artist and costumier), Lynn Cambell, Rachel Kurtz and Jo Templey (three members of the Bare Toed Co.)

Hang productions are mainly family orientated and suitable for festivals. 'Sirens and Sailors' was debuted at the Mouth of the Tyne festival and was supported by funding from North Tyneside Arts. Hang's collaborations with other artists have been more experimental and often evolve from Hang-&-Jam sessions with live musicians. In March 2006 Hang presented Very with Emma Dunn as guest dancer and new aerialist and Hang-&-Jam musicians Steve OJ and Keith Mills.

Other regular users of the Wing include Random Mike (fire performance, walkabout characters, acrobatics, clowning, stilts and balloon modelling, plus more…) and Charlie Carpenter (pretty much the same as Random Mike but with aerial added to boot). Charlie can be contacted at charliecarpenter@lycos.com