While London’s theatre lights are dark for the coronavirus lockdown, a number of them are offering online videos of their productions to soak away the hours.
It’s not quite the same atmosphere as being in the theatre, but on the upside the drinks are cheaper, the sofa’s more comfortable, and most importantly, the queue to the loo is much shorter.
If nothing else, this is a good way to test out some plays and operas you might have balked at paying the full ticket price for, and maybe then when the curtains raise again in a few months time – head out to see them in the flesh and support them as they recover from being closed.
Theatre at Home
They will be streaming a number of their NT Live productions on their YouTube channel over the next few weeks, every Thursday from 7pm, which will then be available for a week to watch at your leisure.
The NT Live productions are their stage shows, but with the intention of being shown in cinemas, so ideal for home video as well.
They put many of their productions online already on their Globe Player service. You can rent each play for £4.99.
There is some free content on there, but very limited.
Pay per view service typically £4 per show from the theatre that provides mostly comedy and cabaret.
Opera at Home
The ROH have created a schedule of free broadcasts and live content which they are putting on their YouTube channel.
The famous Opera and picnic venue traditionally broadcasts to cinemas, but will put them online in the meantime. Bring your own picnic.
USA based, but they have a huge archive of over 700 full-length productions available online via their subscription service, which starts at $14.99 per month.
Musicals at Home
This is a donation supported screening of the musical version written by Julian Fellowes. Log in and watch whenever you want.
Dance at Home
They will be broadcasting a programme of full-length dance performances and workshops via their Facebook page – with each performance available online for a week after broadcast.
Other at Home
There are some long term online subscription services you might consider if you find watching the theatre at home to be quite appealing.
Wide range of UK venues with theatre, opera, musicals, and also art oriented movies.
Currently £9.99 per month, or pay per view options available.
Wide range of cultural arts, from theatre, ballet, dance, opera, and documentaries.
First month free, then £8.99 per month.
Showcases work on the BBC and from the wider sector.
Free (with a TV license of course)
The US theatre service, costs $8.99 per month to give you a dose of stateside culture.