While people remain isolated during the coronavirus crisis, European theatres have been mining their archives and making them available online. Natasha Tripney rounds up the best European theatre available to watch from your home…
The Berlin theatre has made its repertory programme available for streaming online. A new production is being released daily, some with German audio only, but a number with English and French subtitles, including a number of works by Thomas Ostermeier. His production of Hedda Gabler will be available on March 28, Woyzeck on March 30, Hamlet on April 1 and Richard III on April 3. The Simon McBurney production of Stefan Zweig’s Beware of Pity will be broadcast on April 13.
The Munich theatre is also releasing a recording of a production from its programme every day, starting with Toshiki Okada’s No Sex. Forthcoming productions include These Teens Will Save the Future, released on April 3.
The Odéon Theatre in Paris is making its programme available online. The current production is a version of Molière’s The School of Wives directed by Stéphane Braunschweig, but more work is promised. You can also watch a documentary about the striking set design of Simon Stone’s Three Sisters.
Ljubljana’s Mladinsko Theatre will be moving its programme online while the theatre is closed. From March 23, shows from its repertory will be made available online, starting with Ziga Divjak’s production of The Man Who Watched the World. A new production will be released every Monday.
Belgrade’s Yugoslav Drama Theatre is streaming performances from its archive, starting with Hadersfild, a play by Ugljesa Sajtinac about life in Serbia in the 1990s that was later the basis for a popular film. The stage version is directed by the UK’s Alex Chisholm, co-artistic director of Bradford’s Freedom Studios, and stars one of Serbia’s leading actors Nebojsa Glogovac. It will be available from 9pm on March 26.
There’s also a vast range of archive performances from the 1960s and 1970s available here.
Since March 20, Moscow’s Stanislavsky Electrotheatre will be streaming online webcasts of theatre performances (many with English subtitles) as well as a series of lectures. Forthcoming productions with English subtitles include Idiotology, an adaptation of Dostoevsky’s novel The Idiot, and a version of Sarah Kane’s play 4.48 Psychosis.
This absurdist satire by the Kosovar playwright Jeton Neziraj, written in typically vivid, heightened style, explores what happens when a gay couple apply to get married in small Balkan town. It was presented in the UK as a reading as part of the Global Queer Plays season at the Arcola Theatre in London in 2018 and performed at La MaMa in New York last year. It’s available to watch on YouTube with English subtitles.
Astrid Lindgren’s story of a super-strong girl with distinctive pigtails is adapted by Swedish dancer and choreographer Pär Isberg for the Helsinki Opera, with music by Georg Riedel and Stefan Nilsson. The performance at Helsinki Opera House is available via Arte until April 20.
Russian director Yury Butusov’s vibrant four-hour production of Chekhov’s play for the Satirikon Theatre is available to watch online on RussiaStage along with many other Russian productions.
If ever there was a time to get into Beckett, it’s now. Peter Brook’s production of five Beckett short plays, filmed at the Bouffes du Nord in Paris in 2015, is available on Vimeo. Jos Houben, Marcello Magni and Kathryn Hunter star in Brook’s Beckett quintet featuring Rough for Theatre I, Rockaby, Neither, Come and Go and Act Without Words II.
All of the productions in Shakespeare’s Globe’s 2013 season of international stagings of Shakespeare are available to rent on the theatre’s Globe Player website, including Maja Kleczewska’s Polish production of Macbeth, a version of Hamlet directed by Lithuania’s Eimuntas Nekrosius, As You Like It performed by Georgia’s Marjanishvili Theatre, the three parts of Henry VI performed by Serbian, Albanian and Macedonian theatre companies, as well as a range of work from all around the world.