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New and imaginative shows at this year's SIRF tell the story of Stockton

26 July 2019

Encounter some curious strangers, watch a watery tale created especially for the town centre's fountain or go on a quest to find the Tees Tusk!

Image of Stockton on Tees SIRF19 festival

At this year's Stockton International Riverside Festival visitors will be able to do all these things and explore Stockton like they've never done before. 

Councillor Jim Beall, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council's Cabinet Member for Health, Leisure and Culture, said: "Newly created shows commissioned for SIRF19 will compliment some carefully selected performances from across the world to bring a fresh slice of adventure and fun to Stockton town centre.

"Two of the shows, Axial Dance's Dissolve and Quest for the Tees Tusk can only been seen during the four-day festival. So now is the time to plan your weekend and take a look at the SIRF programme, which is packed full of profiles of the acts plus visitor information and top tips on how to enjoy SIRF19."

SIRF 19 takes place from Thursday 1 August to Sunday 4 August.


Axial Dance 'Dissolve'

Friday 2 August, 3.15pm and 6pm

Saturday 3 August, 3.15pm and 6.30pm

High Street Fountain

This show has been commissioned by SIRF, created and choreographed to make Stockton's fountain the stage for a special story of human touch and positivity.


Ray Lee 'Congregation'

Friday 2 August and Saturday 3 August, 11.45am, 1.45pm, 5pm and 7pm

Starts at SIRF Central (Rediscover Stockton Shop), High Street

Come along on a sonic mystery tour across Stockton to a secret location guiding the audience by sound alone.  Keep on track in the right direction and the sphere will make a 'happy' sound. Take the wrong path and a 'sad' sound will be heard.


Débordante 'Far'

Saturday 3 August and Sunday 4 August, 10am, 7.30pm

Infinity Bridge

This is the first time Stockton-on-Tees' iconic Infinity Bridge will be the backdrop for a SIRF performance. French company, Débordante, will create a mirage using movement.  As the performers get closer their silhouettes will sharpen and the landscape will be transformed.


Kamchàtka 'Kamchàtka'

Saturday 3 August, 11am and 3.30pm

Sunday 4 August 1.15 and 4.30pm

High Street

Eight lost characters roam around the town centre carrying their suitcases. Are they passers-by or immigrants? The audience becomes an active part of this intriguing show.  A first for SIRF, Kamchàtka is the first part of a trilogy and the company will return with the second and third part in 2020 and 2021. 


Frolicked 'Quest for the Tees Tusk'

Friday 2 August - Sunday 4 August, various times

Parish Gardens

Quest for the Tees Tusk is Frolicked Theatre Company's newest puppet-filled, puzzle-fuelled adventure for the whole family.

Meet a cast of colourful characters as you uncover a series of hidden locations whilst exploring familiar and not so well-known features of the town centre.

Complete the hunt to win a small prize and be in with a chance to win an original, framed illustration of the town's hidden (and not so hidden) wonders.


The SIRF19 programme is now available online with copies available in the Rediscover Stockton Shop, and Stockton-on-Tees branch libraries too. 

Visit for the latest SIRF news or follow the SIRF Facebook page.