In recent months it has been a great joy to watch three National Theatre Live productions at Thornden Hall – The Importance of Being Earnest with David Suchet as Lady Bracknell, Hamlet with Benedict Cumberbatch in the lead role, and Shakespeare’s glorious comedy As You Like It, which we just watched last night.
I’m glad to report there is not one but three nearby venues in Eastleigh borough which show National Theatre Live productions – Thornden Hall, The Point, Eastleigh and, a little further out at Hedge End, The Berry Theatre.
And on 31st March 2016 The Point at Eastleigh will be showing Hangmen, starring David Morrissey and Andy Nyman. I know David Morrissey best for his role in Doctor Who.
I’ve included this link for fans of The Doctor though this Wikipedia article is not new. Practically everyone would know who the 12th Doctor is by now but the rest of the information on the story line for this episode is good.
I thought David Morrissey was excellent in the role. And I’m sure he’ll be very good in Hangmen. Andy Nyman is probably best known for his role in Peaky Blinders.
National Theatre Live
The idea behind National Theatre Live is to bring the joy of live theatre productions, especially from those staged in London, to those who cannot or have no wish to travel that distance to watch a play.
Those going to a National Theatre Live production get to see a streamed live performance of a play, so getting the thrill of a live production yet also seeing it as if it was a film.
The National Theatre Live idea began in 2009 and has since shown over 20 plays in theatres and other venues around the UK. I like to think that the National Theatre’s first artistic director, Sir Lawrence Olivier, would very much approve of this way of sharing the wonders of West End theatre.
In watching the two plays I’ve attended, I found I was gripped by the “film” but it felt as if I was in the original theatre where the play was being staged.
The National Theatre Live productions are (a) very high quality and (b) a fantastically good idea. If you can’t get to the theatre, it is the bring the theatre to you school of thought. I like that.
And it is very good that in our borough we have a range of venues in which to go to see these. One of them at least is bound to suit most people.
The Point, Eastleigh – National Theatre Live: Hangmen
The Point has been and continues to be home for theatre productions, cinema showings, live music and dance performances as well as supporting various artists. Further details of Hangmen are given below.
National Theatre Live streams Hangmen to The Point
Hangmen, written by Olivier and Academy Award® winner Martin McDonagh (The Pillowman, The Cripple of Inishmaan, In Bruges), a sell out show in London, is being shown as a National Theatre Live production at The Point on 31st March.
The brief synopsis is:-
In his small pub in the northern English town of Oldham, Harry (David Morrissey – The Walking Dead, State of Play) is something of a local celebrity. But what’s the second-best hangman in England to do on the day they’ve abolished hanging?
Amongst the cub reporters and pub regulars dying to hear Harry’s reaction to the news, his old assistant Syd (Andy Nyman – Peaky Blinders, Death at a Funeral) and the peculiar Mooney (Johnny Flynn – Clouds of Sils Maria) lurk with very different motives for their visit.
David Morrissey, Johnny Flynn, and Andy Nyman star in this hilarious stage-play by The Royal Court Theatre Production. Tickets are £12 with £10 concessions, and it’s suitable for people aged 15 and up. To book your spot visit The Point’s website or phone the box office on 023 8065 2333.
And don’t forget Thornden Hall, as well as continuing to show National Theatre Live productions, also screens films (previously shown at The Hilt). Shakespeare’s As You Like It is being shown on 25th February and I hope to review this later. Having enjoyed one of his most famous tragedies, Hamlet, I’m looking forward to watching one of his comedies.
Whether you go to The Point to see Hangmen or to Thornden Hall to see As You Like It (which is also being shown at The Point), I think the fact we can easily access National Theatre Live productions and cinema without the need to go to the West End or a vast cinema multiplex is a great idea.
Yes, I’ve visited the multiplexes and they’re okay but I do prefer a smaller venue for my cultural nights out. It isn’t always convenient to go to a bigger theatre either and parking can be a nightmare at these. (It is often also not cheap either!).
I would urge all who love film or theatre to support our local amateur dramatic groups, The Chameleon Theatre Group and MDG Players and The Point and Thornden Hall especially since these are so close to home.
The idea of bringing productions to local people needs to be backed up by practical support. And generally if it increases the love of theatre, this, longer term, benefits the bigger venues as well. You are more likely to go there for productions not available locally.
I hope I shall get to see many more National Theatre Live productions during the coming year. They make for a wonderful evening out. And it is so nice to be able to choose local venues for this.
Visit Allison Symes’ website: Fairytales with Bite
Read blog posts by Allison Symes published on Chandler’s Ford Today.
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