Ten of the best shows to watch online in the coming days
Reasons to be Cheerful, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry, streaming until August 3
Part gig, part play, this loud, bold and jubilant coming-of-age tale celebrates Ian Dury and the Blockheads. The show is packed with punk attitude and stone-cold classic songs like Hit Me with your Rhythm Stick and Sex and Drugs and Rock and Roll, as well as the titular Reasons to be Cheerful, Part 3. The show is presented by renowned theatre company Graeae, which is dedicated to placing disabled actors centre stage and challenging preconceptions. Seamlessly integrating British Sign Language and creative captioning, the show is available to watch via Graeae’s website as part of Crips without Constraints”– an ambitious, 11-week programme of online activity celebrating the creativity and diversity of disabled artists across the UK. It’s written by Paul Sirett and directed by Jenny Seale.
Where to watch: graeae.org
A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare’s Globe, streaming June 15 to28
Shakespeare put some of his most dazzling dramatic poetry at the service of this teasing, glittering, comical and remarkably inventive play, whose seriousness is only fleetingly glimpsed beneath its dreamlike surface.
Where to watch: Shakespeare’s Globe channel on YouTube
Lucy Dacus, Royal Albert Hall, June 17, 8.30pm
Singer-songwriter Lucy Dacus will perform an exclusive set from her home as part of the Royal Albert Home sessions. Following the release of her widely-acclaimed second album Historian, and the collaborative boygenius EP with Julien Baker and Phoebe Bridgers, Dacus spent the past year rolling out a festive mix of original and cover songs tied to various celebratory occasions, including Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, Halloween, Christmas and Bruce Springsteen’s birthday. The resulting record, 2019, is a captivating body of work that foregrounds Lucy’s versatility as both a cover artist and pre-eminent young songwriter of today.
Where to watch: royalalberthall.com
La Fille Mal Gardée, The Royal Ballet, streaming from June 12
Frederick Ashton’s final full-length ballet, La Fille mal gardée (The Wayward Daughter) is one of his most joyous creations, inspired by his love for the Suffolk countryside. It is based on a 1789 French ballet originally created by Jean Dauberval. John Lanchbery created the music for Ashton’s ballet from Ferdinand Hérold’s 1828 score. La Fille mal gardée was a resounding success on its premiere in 1960 and has remained a firm favourite in The Royal Ballet’s repertory.
Where to watch: youtube.com/royaloperahouse
The Magic Flute, The Royal Opera, streaming from June 19
Prince Tamino promises the Queen of the Night that he will rescue her daughter Pamina from the enchanter Sarastro. He begins his quest, accompanied by the bird-catcher Papageno – but all is not as it seems Julia Jones conducts The Royal Opera’s spellbinding production of Mozart’s much-loved opera with a cast including Roderick Williams.
Where to watch: youtube.com/royaloperahouse
Guillame Tell, Rossini Opera Festival, streaming until July 7
When William Tell stirs his peers to rebellion to free themselves from foreign control, a young man has to choose between the love of his oppressor’s sister and his aspirations for liberty. Rossini’s final opera is revolutionary in itself, retelling the story of the Swiss folk legend in a grandiose ode to freedom.
Where to watch: operavision.eu
The Turn of the Screw, Opera North, streaming until August 21
In a remote country house, a governess fights to protect two orphaned children from strange and menacing spirits. But are these apparitions real, or the product of her troubled imagination? And what terrible evil occurred before her arrival? Based on the famed ghost story by Henry James, this edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller reaches new levels of terror and claustrophobia in Alessandro Talevi’s spine-chilling production. Benjamin Britten’s disturbingly beautiful music ratchets the tension up to breaking point.
Where to watch: OperaVision channel on YouTube
Twelfth Night – Live!, The Maltings Theatre, St Albans, June 12 to 14, 8.15pm
Enjoy Shakespeare like never before in a musical version of one of his best loved comedies, set on a cruise liner at the height of the roaring twenties. The theatre welcomes you aboard the SS Illyria for its maiden voyage, where you’ll find yourself immersed in the action, interacting with a crazy cast of characters, and singing and dancing along with an online audience of bright young things from around the globe. It’s all accompanied by a jazz band performing music by Rihanna, Britney Spears, Radiohead and many more So slip on your flapper dress, mix your Martini and join in the world’s first live, interactive online musical – a comical and hedonistic cocktail with a bittersweet twist.
Where to watch: maltingstheatre.co.uk/twelfthnight
Kes Reimagined, Crucible Theatre, Sheffield, streaming until June 14
Award-winning choreographer Jonathan Watkins conceived and created Kes Reimagined - a dance, music and puppetry adaptation of Barry Hines’ seminal novel A Kestrel for a Knave for Sheffield’s Crucible Theatre in 2014. It’s now been re-imagined for the screen with International Emmy Award winner Director Ross MacGibbon to bring this modern classic to audiences in a new way.
Where to watch: thespace.org
A Monster Calls, Old Vic, London, streaming until June 11
Offering a dazzling insight into love, life and healing, A Monster Calls tells the story of thirteen-year-old Conor and his mum. Together, they’ve managed just fine since his dad moved away. But now his mum is sick and not getting any better. His grandmother won’t stop interfering and the kids at school won’t look him in the eye. Then, one night, Conor is woken by something at his window. A monster has come walking. It’s come to tell Conor tales from when it walked before. And when it’s finished, Conor must tell his own story and face his deepest fears.
Where to watch: oldvictheatre.com