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Fenwick supports Sage Gateshead as £5 festive tickets reach local communities this Christmas

Posted on 9 December 2022

Sage Gateshead and Fenwick Christmas graphic

Sage Gateshead and Fenwick are coming together this Christmas as people get the chance to enjoy a festive performance for £5.

Department store of distinction Fenwick is supporting the leading music centre as its much-loved £5 ticket scheme helps bring music to all throughout December. The discounted tickets are distributed through local partner charities who support people experiencing challenging circumstances in Newcastle and Gateshead. The aim is to ensure more people across the region have the opportunity to enjoy a festive favourite at Sage Gateshead.

Earlier this year, the two North East organisations collaborated on a series of successful events showcasing some of the region’s most exciting artists.

For this year’s Fenwick Christmas Window, Royal Northern Sinfonia, orchestra of Sage Gateshead, made history by being the first in the window’s 50-year history to record a live soundtrack to the magical display.

Musical excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker, were carefully selected to complement the mischievous character Clarice Bean, of author Lauren Child’s Think Like an Elf, the star of this year’s window.

The developing partnership started in September when Fenwick launched a Future Sounds series of concerts with Sage Gateshead as part of the store’s140th anniversary celebrations. Sage Gateshead curated an eclectic line-up to perform at the store’s popular new restaurant and music club, Arthur’s. The programme featured local musicians from Sage Gateshead’s Artist Development programme and included Georgia May, Lyras, Nadedja and Knats.

Abigail Pogson, Managing Director at Sage Gateshead said:

“Sage Gateshead and Fenwick are both rooted in the North East. It is fantastic that Fenwick has come on board to support us with initiatives like the £5 ticket scheme this Christmas.

“We know that people and families are facing new challenges with the cost-of-living-crisis, and we want to make sure as many people as possible have the chance to spend some time together enjoying music and a festive show here at Sage Gateshead. I’d also like to thank the local charities who have helped us to distribute the tickets.

“Sage Gateshead has so much to offer fans of music this festive season. Whether you want traditional seasonal music, a fun night out with friends or something for the whole family, we’re looking forward to welcoming you in December.”

Leo Fenwick, Head of Brand & Community at Fenwick, added:

“We are incredibly proud to announce the continuation of our partnership with Sage Gateshead which forms part of our 140th anniversary celebrations.

The £5 festive ticket scheme will give the local community the opportunity to enjoy festive entertainment with friends and family this Christmas. Music is a common thread which brings people together as displayed at our recent Newcastle Christmas Window reveal which featured a soundtrack performed and recorded exclusively by the Royal Northern Sinfonia, orchestra of Sage Gateshead.

“This was a Fenwick first and one we are incredibly proud of.”


For press inquiries please contact Susie Gray, The Corner Shop PR – / 07834 073795

or Jackie Thompson, 0191 443 4602

Notes to editors:

Fenwick of Bond Street

  • A UK department store of distinction, Fenwick has been a destination for shoppers of exceptional taste for over 140 years. Through our carefully curated selection of products, modern outlook, unique collaborations and exceptional service, we remain true to our founder John James Fenwick’s vision of a store that delights the thoughtful woman.

About Sage Gateshead

  • Sage Gateshead is an international music centre for the North East and wider North. Through music, creative learning and artist development, the organisation demonstrates what music can achieve for communities.
  • Since opening in 2004, Sage Gateshead has worked side by side with partners and the wider community to help address the complex blend of social and economic challenges the region faces.
  • Sage Gateshead continues to be a major employer bringing investment and tourism into the region. We’ve generated a c. £500 million contribution to the local economy.
  • Sage Gateshead has brought social, cultural and educational value to over 10 million people and millions more via digital and broadcast activity. The scale of its artistic, learning and artist development activity places Sage Gateshead amongst the UK’s largest cultural organisations, while reaching a substantially more socially and economically diverse audience.
  • Pre-pandemic Sage Gateshead attracted 2 million visitors; 5,000 people took part in weekly music classes; 17,854 school children experienced live orchestral music and we worked with a further 2,418 vulnerable young people; more than 2,000 adults a week took part in music making designed to tackle social isolation.
  • The North East region is one of the worst affected by Covid-19. The region will be one where the recovery is slow and hard. Arts and culture have a pivotal role to play in regional and nation-wide recovery.
  • Covid-19 presents a major financial challenge to Sage Gateshead. 80% of its income has been affected, and in 2020/21 £10 million in revenue was lost. The organisation has taken swift action to overcome this crisis. 90% of the workforce was placed on furlough, significant cost savings have been sought and found, and it launched a fundraising campaign to raise £3 million to help secure the organisation during the next three years. Further challenges lie ahead; in 2021/22, Sage Gateshead estimates box office and trading income to be less than half of what would be expected in a normal year.
  • Sage Gateshead temporarily closed to the public on 17 March 2020, five days ahead of the announcement of the national lockdown. Performances recommenced in October 2020 with a season of socially distanced concerts featuring Royal Northern Sinfonia and artists across types of music, made available by live stream. Audiences were able to be present in the hall for two weekends of those performances.
  • In 2020 Sage Gateshead received a grant of £2.8 million from the Culture Recovery Fund Round One to help it through the pandemic and associated financial crisis. In 2021 the charity received a loan of £3m from the Culture Recovery Fund Round Two to support recovery. It has thanked the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, and Arts Council England for this vital support.