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Theatre with a British Accent

Looking for some free productions that will also make you feel like you’ve gone on a holiday to another part of the world? Do you, like me miss some theatre with a British accent? Never fear, I’ve got you covered!  Here is a quick list of how to get a dose of British theatre while staying safe inside your house.

The National Theatre – London – Starting April 2nd

The National Theatre at Home April 2nd launch via their Youtube channel and will bring some of the best British theatre to your screen.

James Cordon in ONE MAN TWO GUVNORS

April 2nd is the inaugural broad cast, of the critically renown and award-winning production of ONE MAN TWO GUVNORS. New productions will continue to screen each Thursday and then be available for 7 days after.  Not only will it include the performance but also will include interviews with the cast and creative teams,

Already announced productions include Sally Cookson’s adaptation of JANE EYRE (April 9), Bryony Lavery’s adaptation of TREASURE ISLAND (April 16), and Tamsin Greig in TWELFTH NIGHT (April 23). Additional titles will continue to be announced in the future.

Click here for the National Theatre Youtube channel

The Globe – London – Starting April 6th

If you have always dreamed of seeing a show at the famous Globe Theatre in London, (and really, isn’t this what most peorolple think of when they think theatre with a British accent?) I’ve got great new for you! Naturally, Shakespeare is the playwright of choice for this iconic Elizabeth-style playhouse.  Staring April 6th they will have a full English Language Shakespeare play for free, starting with  HAMLET from 2018 staring Michelle Terry in the title role.

Free May 4-17th The cast of A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (2013), Photo: John Haynes

Bonus, the theatre is working on a special series “Shakespeare in Love & Isolation”, specifically inspired by current events. 

If that’s not enough you can also listen to the podcast “Such Stuff” where Michelle Terry and her husband Paul ready discuss their favorite works by the bard and celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday on April 23rg with the talented Mark Rylance.

Here’s the full list of free-to-stream English-language plays:

HAMLET (2018), April 6-19 

ROMEO AND JULIET (2009), April 20-May 3

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (2013), May 4-17

THE WINTER’S TALE (2018), May 18-31

THE TWO NOBLE KINSMEN (2018), June 1-14

THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR (2019), June 15-28

You can sign up for all this on the Globe Player website.

Just Added! – THE SHOW MUST GO ON – starting April 3rd Andrew Lloyd Webber Musicals for streaming

As of Friday, April 3, THE SHOWS MUST GO ONYouTube Channel will makeavailable a selection of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musicals available for free! The first is the 200 adaption of JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOUR DREAMCOAT. The 2000 adaptation, starring Donny Osmond, Maria Friedman, Richard Attenborough and Joan Collins..

Each show will be available weekly at 11:00AM PT/2:00PM ET for a limited 48-hour period online – no charge or sign up required – giving fans of musical theatre an opportunity to enjoy beloved shows, from their living rooms.

The second production to be made available will be JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR (2012) (just in time for Easter) on Good Friday, April 10,. This is the arena production starring Tim Minchin, Melanie C and Chris Moyles.

Additional shows to be announced in the future!

Sir Patrick Stewart reading Shakespeare Sonnets – available 24/7 thanks to his Twitter and Instagram

Sir Patrick Stewart reading Shakespeare’s Sonnets – the ultimate Theatre with a British Accent

Honestly, just reading that makes me want to swoon, so you can imagine how amazing these sonnets are when they’re performed by Stewart. No stranger to the stage or Shakespeare Stewart is reading a different sonnet every day.  At the start of this project with Sonnet Number 1 he explains ‘When I was a child in the 1940s, my mother would cut up slices of fruit for me (there wasn’t much) and as she put it in front of me she would say, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” How about, “A sonnet a day keeps the doctor away”? So…here we go: Sonnet 1.’

Shakespeare wrote 154 sonnets, so that gives us plenty of material form him to read and for us to enjoy.

Hampstead Theatre – London – currently playing

Hampstead Theatre is bringing their archived productions to their YouTube channel thanks to their online collaboration with The Guardian.

Week one brings   Wild (2016) a darkly comic whistle-blower story inspired by Edward Snowden, written by Mike Bartlett and directed by James Macdonald. Wild is available to stream on the Hampstead Theatre website and the Guardian website from 10am on Monday 30 March to 10pm on Sunday 5 April.

Week two, from Monday 6 April to Sunday 12 April, offers Beth Steel’s acclaimed 2014 play Wonderland, which gives an epic account of the miners’ strikes and the political upheaval that framed them.

Finally, from Monday 13 April to Sunday 19 April, you can stream Howard Brenton’s Drawing the Line (2013). The vast production, featuring a large ensemble cast, is a celebration of human spirit based around the partitioning of India in 1947.

Click here to watch on the Hampstead Theatre YouTube Channel

Hope this helps you enjoy some theatre with a British accent, for free and no traveling required!

Looking for ideas of what to do during this time of quarantine? Click here for more suggestions

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