Where to watch your favourite shows, while supporting the industry.
Are you missing out on your regular fix of the Arts? Following the temporary closure of the Guildhall and all venues and theatres alike, there is a void that only some top-notch arts will fill. If you are after something to keep the kids entertained for a couple of hours, or an alternative to snuggle up to as opposed to the usual streaming services, then dig in, as we bring you the best live theatre, West End, Broadway and dance we can find on offer at the moment.
After the incredible success of being able to bring world-class theatre to any cinema near you, National Theatre Live are giving audiences the chance to stream some of the best in UK theatre straight into their front-rooms.
From last Friday, 27th March, the National Theatre launched NTLive on YouTube, kicking things off with Richard Bean’s One Man Two Guvnors featuring a Tony Award-winning performance from James Corden. This performance will be followed on 9th April by Sally Cookson’s Jane Eyre, 16th April will be Bryony Lavery’s Treasure Island, with Twelfth Night featuring Tamsin Greig on 23rd April. The National Theatre have also confirmed there will be more performances added down the line.
This streaming service is completely free via YouTube, however you are asked to donate to support the arts.
The BalletBoyz’ new show, Deluxe, was due to open at Sadlers Wells this March. The new show will see Shanghai-based dancer and choreographer Xie Xin make her UK debut choreographing a new piece for the Company dancers, set to an original score by composer Jiang Shaofeng, whilst Maxine Doyle (Punchdrunk) will present work to live jazz music by composer Cassie Kinoshi, of the Mercury Prize-nominated SEED Ensemble.
Due to the current outbreak, they have taken the show digital. Until Friday 3rd April, the new show is available to watch on the Sadlers Wells Facebook page. Whilst the performance is completely free to watch during this time, they do ask for a donation, which we highly recommend. In addition to their newest show, the BalletBoyz have also put heaps of additional material for free on MoovBank.
If you are still left wanting for more dance content, head to the Sadlers Wells Facebook as they have announced plans to host workshops and premier new work over the coming month.
The Wind In The Willows
Something for the kids! Based on the classic children’s story by Kenneth Grahame, the musical has a book by Julian Fellowes, music and lyrics by Stiles and Drewe and direction by Rachel Kavanaugh. Wind in the Willows follows the various characters of the book including Mr Toad, Ratty and Mole, as they follow Toad’s insatiable need for speed.
The musical, which opened in June 2017, starred Rufus Hound as Toad, Simon Lipkin as Ratty, Craig Mather as Mole, Neil McDermott as Chief Weisel, Denise Welch as Mrs Otter and Gary Wilmot as Badger.
Received brilliantly in the theatre world, this musical is now available to stream for free on the Wind and the Willows website, all the producers ask for is a donation to keep the arts afloat.
BroadwayHD and Marquee TV
Move over Netflix, streaming of theatre, dance, West End and Broadway is here in the form of BroadwayHD and Marquee TV. These two streaming services are no newcomers to the small screen.
Both offer a wide and diverse library of the best of shows, from the Royal Shakespeare Company to the Royal Opera House, to Broadway classics such as Memphis and Kiss Me Kate, both services have free trial periods where you can enjoy these shows for free. Marquee TV has actually extended their period to 30 days due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Even after the period is over, with costs as low as £7.25 a month, these online databases are one to rival Netflix.
Performance Isn’t Dead
From catching the latest in ballet to watching classic RSC productions on your computer, the arts and culture seems to have adjusted well to life with the stage lights dimmed.
In amongst all of these extensive options to keep you and your family entertained, please don’t forget that without financial support, the arts cannot thrive in a closed environment, so please, if you can, donate to a venue. Whether it’s a local venue to you, or a large establishment, any donation is gratefully received.
With all these alternatives to seeing your favourite show on stage, you can really see that theatre and the arts is not dead, it’s just in quarantine.
For now, the lights may be dimmed, but the show will always go on.