keskiviikko 19. kesäkuuta 2013

NT Liven (yllätys)menestystarina

Yksi mun suosikkiaiheista nykyään on National Theatren NTLive taltioinnit. Muutama aika sitten eli 9.6. Guardian julkaisi tosi kiinnostavan artikkelin näistä teatteritaltioinneista ja niiden esittämisestä. Se oli varsin hyvä juttu ja poiki oikein mielenkiintoista keskustelua myös nettilehden sivuilla.

Mutta siis joo, toimittaja käy katsomassa This House -näytelmän, puoliksi leffassa, puoliksi livenä. Ekaa kertaa näen nyt jotain katsojalukujakin noista. Finnkino ainakin aika visusti vaikenee omistaan.

On 16 May, the NT Live broadcast of This House played to 45,000 people in cinemas around the UK. That's equivalent to selling out the National's main auditorium for more than five weeks solid. Another 20,000 watched overseas. More will follow with encore screenings. Since the first such broadcast in 2009 – when Helen Mirren's Phèdre was seen by 50,000 people worldwide – NT Live has achieved a total audience of 1.3 million.

So how to translate theatre to the cinema without losing its immediacy? On a screen, even great shows can look hammy, turgid and dead. To avoid this, specialist camera directors are bought in: musicals get music concert directors, Shakespeare goes to drama types. This House falls to Tim van Someren, whose credits also include panel shows and awards ceremonies. "Our aim is to film your performance," he tells the cast at a rehearsal, "not shape your performance for film." He tells me later: "The key is to remember it's not just a play – it's tonight's performance at the Olivier theatre. We don't show cut-aways of audience members laughing, like on TV. But if they're in shot, we don't shy away from showing them."

So what next? There are no plans to extend NT Live online, but "never say never," says Sabel. Curiously, the broadcasts haven't diminished audiences for regional tours or West End transfers. There will be more collaborations with other theatres, too. Next up is NT Live's first West End show: The Audience with Helen Mirren as the monarch. Tom Hiddleston's Coriolanus at the Donmar follows in January; and Kenneth Branagh's Macbeth, in Manchester next month, has just been confirmed.

"There's been a real shift in our thinking," Sabel explains. "NT Live has built its own audience, who can see eight productions a year without setting foot inside this building. We used to think the ultimate success was someone seeing an NT Live, then coming to the theatre. Now we see it as a success in its own right. Our audience isn't just about the bricks and mortar. It's much, much bigger than that."

Pieni päivitys tähän eli The Audience rikkoi kaikki NTLiven katsojaennätykset tähän mennessä! BBC uutisoi aiheesta eilen.

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