Customs House

The Customs House in South Shields has had a massive impact on BTC lives as professional artists and educators. For around 6 years now they have supported our work and have worked with us a lot on teaching, workshops and is the spiritual home to our ‘Council of the Ordinary’ piece, where we were asked to open Emma Tooths ‘Councilium Plebis’ show at the Customs House and the Arts Team asked us to create a dance response to her work, which led us on the fantastic journey with this piece. We cannot thank them enough for that opportunity and Emma for inspiring us.

The Customs House have engaged BTC in a lot of project work with schools and have really helped us develop as educators, teachers and youth leaders. Through them we have worked with a variety of schools, primaries, secondary and colleges, this range of work has given us confidence in our teaching and really taught us how to engage and work with young people from all walks of life.

One of our longest running groups is also based at the Customs House, our young b-boy b-girl group CUSTOM BREAKS has been running at the venue now for 3 years and has really been influential in producing some of the best young b-boys in the region. This group has gone from strength to strength over the years and under our guidance and support from the Customs House has seen them perform at Juice Festival, Breakin Convention Newcastle, Just Jam, South Bank Centre (London), and perform in Germany. 

Custom Breaks is every Tuesday at Customs House 6-8pm. The support we get with the group is great and through the Cultural Development Team and Find Your Talent, the young people have been lucky enough to receive master class workshops with some of the worlds top b-boys such as Dyzee (SuperNaturalz, Canada) Mouse (Floor Gangz, UK), Reveal (Killafornia, USA), Hat Solo (Flow Mo, Finland), Rox-Rite (Renegades, USA), Mounir (Vagabonds, France) and the legendary Ken Swift and 7Gems Rock Division.  

Please see clip of Custom Breaks

Another aspect of our partnership with the Customs House are the Hip Hop Summer Schools which we have ran at the venue for the past 4 years, these encompass all elements of hip-hop culture (graffiti, beat-boxing, bboying, mc-ing, dj-ing and production) this is an exclusive summer school and there are no others like it in the North East. Local Hip Hop artists such as Ken Masters, DJ ADS, Mr Breaks, Smooth and Newline Graffiti and of course BTC all have worked on this week long intensive programme with great results.

The Customs House is a  great place for young people and a organisation where culture and creativity are cared about and we are so happy to have worked with them and continue to work with them

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