My last post was about technology connecting us individually. Today I was lucky enough to feel connected to thousands of others around the world. I was in the audience of a screening of “The Audience” by Peter Morgan, starring Helen Mirren as The Queen performed at Gielgud Theatre in London’s West End thanks to NTLive (National Theatre Live) and it was wonderful.
NTLive began in 2009, with live theatre performances being broadcast live into cinemas around the UK and Europe. These recordings are then screened later around the world. Emma Freud introduced today’s screening of “The Audience” and said the recording was being screened in 25 countries. It is wonderful to feel part of a worldwide theatre audience watching an amazing and beautifully filmed theatre performance.
Technology has made all of this possible. Technology is opening the world to us and us to the world. From the early days of ‘fly on the wall documentaries’ and natural history programs, technology has taken us the audience to parts of the world we would never normally see. The technology of television, movies and now the internet gives us all levels of access we have never had before.
This photo is from Flickr.com and Gary Bembridge, the title says it all “There’s a lot of screens and tech going into #NTLive. Buzz is building!”. The photo show just a small part of the technology needed to bring one of the oldest art forms to audiences around the world.
What saddens me is the size of the audiences of the screenings I have attended. There are rarely more than 20 people. I am always shocked, as anyone who loves theatre and wants the opportunity to see performances they would have to travel 1000’s of kilometres to see should be the first in line.
I love live theatre but NTLive is a wonderful theatrical and movie experience, there is even an interval. I highly recommend you keep an eye on the NTLive website for updates of the next screening near you.
NB: This is an unsolicited post I really just love NTLive.