Live Arts

NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE: A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM

Thurs 17th October
Shakespeare’s most famous romantic comedy will be captured live from the Bridge Theatre in London in summer 2019. Gwendoline Christie (Game of Thrones), Oliver Chris (Green Wing, NT Live: Young Marx), David Moorst (NT Live: Allelujah!) and Hammed Animashaun (The Barber Shop Chronicles) lead the cast as Titania, Oberon, Puck and Bottom.

ROYAL OPERA: DON PASQUALE

Thurs 24th October
Royal Opera favourite Bryn Terfel heads the cast for this new production of Donizetti’s comedy of domestic drama across two generations. The witty story of a middle-aged man whose supposed young wife runs rings around him – with her own ulterior romantic purpose in mind – has long delighted and surprised audiences, not least as presented with the sparkle of its music and the virtuoso skill of its performers. Damiano Michieletto’s exhilarating production shows how contemporary the characters still are and how immediate and touching the story remains.

NORTHERN BALLET: DRACULA

Thurs 31st October
With darkly Gothic sets and costumes, Northern Ballet is resurrecting Bram Stoker’s classic horror story for special LIVE screenings in cinemas this Halloween. ​​The haunting tale of passion and immortality is played out through ​a unique blend of sensuous dancing​ and​ gripping theatre​ – ​this is ballet with a dramatic bite​.

ROYAL BALLET: CONCERTO / ENIGMA VARIATIONS / RAYMONDA ACT III

Tues 5th November
From The Royal Ballet’s classical origins in the works of Marius Petipa, to the home-grown choreographers who put British ballet on the world stage, this mixed programme highlights the versatility of the Company.

NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE: HANSARD

Thurs 7th November
See Olivier Award-winners, Lindsay Duncan (Birdman, About Time) and Alex Jennings (The Lady in the Van, The Queen), in this brand new play from Simon Wood, broadcast live from the National Theatre in London.

42ND STREET: THE MUSICAL

Sun 10th November
The largest ever production of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical theatre spectacular. Filmed live at the magnificent Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in London’s West End in 2018. A tap-dancing, show-stopping extravaganza – winner of 4 WhatsOnStage Awards.

RSC LIVE: TIMON OF ATHENS

Thurs 21st November
In a world driven by greed, what do we truly value? Timon has it all – money, influence, friends. But when the money runs out, Timon soon finds her influence and friends have also gone. Left alone, she flees Athens to take refuge in the woods, cursing the city she once loved. Featuring a “searing central performance” (Guardian) from award-winning actor, Kathryn Hunter, Timon of Athens is a glittering and biting satire on whether money truly buys happiness.

NT LIVE: PRESENT LAUGHTER

Thurs 28th November
Matthew Warchus directs Andrew Scott (BBC’s Sherlock, Fleabag) in Noël Coward’s provocative comedy Present Laughter. Captured live from The Old Vic in London, Present Laughter is a giddy and surprisingly modern reflection on fame, desire and loneliness. Note this production is filmed in front of a live audience, rather than broadcast live.

Branagh Theatre Live: The Winter's Tale

Due to phenomenal demand, The Winter’s Tale, Shakespeare’s timeless tragicomedy of obsession and redemption, returns to cinemas this festive season. This beautifully reimagined production, co-directed by Rob Ashford and Kenneth Branagh, features a remarkable cast including Dame Judi Dench as Paulina, alongside Tom Bateman, Jessie Buckley, Hadley Fraser, Miranda Raison and Sir Kenneth Branagh as Leontes.

ROYAL BALLET: THE NUTCRACKER

Tues 17 December
The Royal Ballet’s glorious production of The Nutcracker, created by Peter Wright in 1984, is the production par excellence of an all-time ballet favourite. It is Christmas Eve and Herr Drosselmeyer the magician sweeps young Clara away on a fantasy adventure in which time is suspended, the family living-room becomes a great battlefield, and a magical journey takes them through the Land of Snow to the Kingdom of Sweets. Tchaikovsky’s glittering score, the gorgeous festive stage designs, and The Royal Ballet’s captivating dancing including an exquisite pas de deux between the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Prince, make this Nutcracker the quintessential Christmas experience.

Berliner Philharmoniker Live: New Year's Eve Concert

Celebrate the conclusion to 2019 with the Berliner Philharmoniker’s glittering New Year’s Eve Concert. This fantastic event will be conducted by Chief Conductor Kirill Petrenko and features a lively American programme including the star soprano Diana Damrau as guest soloist. Broadcast live from Berlin there are sure to be fireworks as the orchestra takes the audience on a journey through George Gershwin’s An American in Paris and Leonard Bernstein’s Symphonic Dances from West Side Story as well as works from Cole Porter, Carl Loewe, and Kurt Weill.

ROYAL BALLET: THE SLEEPING BEAUTY

Thurs 16th January
This production of The Sleeping Beauty has been delighting audiences in Covent Garden since 1946. A classic of Russian ballet, it established The Royal Ballet both in its new home after World War II and as a world-class company. Sixty years later, in 2006, the original staging was revived, returning Oliver Messel’s wonderful designs and glittering costumes to the stage. Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky’s enchanting score and Marius Petipa’s original choreography beautifully combine with sections created for The Royal Ballet by Frederick Ashton, Anthony Dowell and Christopher Wheeldon. This ballet is sure to cast its spell over anyone who sees it.

ROYAL OPERA: LA BOHEME

Wed 29th January
Puccini’s opera of young love in 19th-century Paris is packed with beautiful music, including lyrical arias, celebratory choruses for Act II’s evocation of Christmas Eve in the Latin Quarter and a poignant final scene over which the composer himself wept.

ROYAL OPERA: FIDELIO

17th March 2020
Beethoven’s only opera is a masterpiece, an uplifting story of risk and triumph. In this new production, conducted by Antonio Pappano, Jonas Kaufmann plays the political prisoner Florestan, and Lise Davidsen his wife Leonore (disguised as ‘Fidelio’) who daringly sets out to rescue him. Set in strong counterpoint are the ingredients of domestic intrigue, determined love and the cruelty of an oppressive regime. The music is transcendent throughout and includes the famous Act I Quartet, the Prisoners’ Chorus and Florestan’s impassioned Act II cry in the darkness and vision of hope. Tobias Kratzer’s new staging brings together the dark reality of the French Revolutionary ‘Terror’ and our own time to illuminate Fidelio’s inspiring message of shared humanity.

ROYAL BALLET: SWAN LAKE

Weds 1st April
Liam Scarlett’s glorious production of Swan Lake, new in 2018, returns for its first revival. While remaining faithful to the Marius Petipa/Lev Ivanov text, Scarlett’s additional choreography and John Macfarlane’s magnificent designs breathe new life into what is arguably the best-known and most-loved classical ballet.