Itching to get back inside a theatre? Can’t wait for a real live show with real live people?
There’ve been myriad substitutes during lockdown. Streaming, online, mini-films, videos – ingeniously working round the elephant-not-in-the-room: a living, breathing audience.
Can theatre on screen, at any time, be as good as the real thing? My blog post, pre-Covid, addressed the issue. Read it here:
Now, as we edge back to live theatre, I’d just like to mention 3 recent examples of screened performance that might help get you back in the groove.
Play On! Is a brilliant evocation of what it feels like to be in the room where it happens. It’s Oran Mor’s Play Pie and a Pint team in a joyous celebration of the past and future of theatre.
If the challenge of filming drama in the time of Covid is to make it uplifting, rather than focusing on the misery of lockdown, this smart-as-paint 30-minute adventure succeeds fabulously. It makes you want to get back inside and enjoy a show.
You can watch it here:
Another inspired, creative project comes from Mull Theatre. Braw Tales are 5 short animations – some delightful, some mysterious – that draw you in and give you the frisson you’ll feel once you can watch the real human thing. The design, style and talent of each are distinctive and enchanting.
Here’s the link:
Finally, not the work of a theatre company, but a wonderful reminder of all that’s quirky about performance. Wuthering Heist is the first episode of a new series of Inside No. 9, bizarrely original comedy noir.
Goldoni meets Tarantino. With the plot, style and characters of commedia dell’arte, it’s an affectionate piss-take of the whole idea of live representation. It captures the daftness of tricks like umbrellas for wheels, grotesque masks and stage whispers.
It’s on BBC iPlayer.
Here’s hoping your appetite is duly whetted!