8 April 2020
by Abi Cutler
Even though theatres up and down the country have temporarily closed, there are still plenty of ways to get involved in the theatre community! Here are some ways creatives are keeping us all entertained, active and informed from a distance.
Several venues and companies are now streaming their past productions online for audiences to watch from the comfort of their own homes, often for free! Upcoming streams include Jane Eyre for National Theatre at Home, and Jesus Christ Superstar as part of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Shows Must Go On.
It’s not just theatre productions that are available. At the Rose this week we are running Screenings at 7: from Tuesday 7 to Friday 10 April at 7pm you can watch a premiere of short films produced by the Rose Youth Theatre 2019 film course. Check out all four films here.
A great form of exercise and more fun than a jog, there are plenty of dance classes being held online for you to choose from. Are you a Strictly fan? Check out pro dancer Dianne Buswell’s YouTube channel where you can learn how to jive, do the Charleston and more. Is ballet more your thing? Look up The Ballet Coach’s channel. There are plenty of options out there, so whether it’s tap, jazz, ballroom or salsa get searching! Our very own Learning and Participation teacher Verity Richards is taking her Tap for Fun series online which you can check it out here.
You read that right: even in lockdown, you can still watch live concerts from your sofa. The Theatre Café’s Leave a Light On series showcases some of the best talent in the West End right now, and tickets are only £7.50. Just pick the artist you want to watch on their website, pay for your ticket and tune in!
Plenty of workshops are still running remotely. At the Rose we are about to launch a 10-week digital acting course for adults; for more information or to express interest please email [email protected] We will also be continuing our Youth Theatre classes online from May.
For aspiring creatives, the National Student Drama Festival has moved online, and each day this week you can sign up for their online workshops and events being run over Zoom. For those who are dance-oriented, Sadler’s Wells have launched Digital Stage, a platform for free dance performances and workshops.
Both Masterclass at the Theatre Royal Haymarket and the King’s Head Theatre are running Q&As which are completely free to watch. Here is your opportunity to ask industry professionals and creatives the questions you’ve always wanted answered!
Looking for a creative outlet? Several venues and organisations have launched challenges designed to keep everyone busy and motivated in lockdown. Examples include Chichester Festival Theatre’s Five Day Play, in which participants write a short play based on a brief, and Mousetrap Theatre Projects’ Every Home A Theatre, which asks households to take on a different creative challenge each week.
A great way to take your mind off what is going on around you, there are plenty of free yoga classes available online. A popular choice is Yoga with Adrienne on YouTube: she has options for all abilities and of different lengths to fit into your schedule. From yoga for pain relief and for anxiety and stress to yoga for actors, whatever you need she has!
Josh Mathieson, who has worked with us on several productions as voice coach and associate director, helps run the ultimate podcast for lazy bookworms. The Lazy Book Club takes a classic novel (currently Peter Pan) and goes through it chapter by chapter so you don’t have to!
Industry podcasts the Rose recommends include Blank, which looks at all those times in writing or performing where you just go ‘blank’, The 98%, for hilarious but also harsh realities that come with being an actor, and the Playwright’s Podcast from the Royal Court.
There are individuals and groups providing content remotely right on our doorstep! Local choreographer Caitlin Barnett is running her Flowetic dance sessions (a mix of ballet, contemporary, lyrical jazz and more) via Zoom and only asks you to pay what you can.
Kingston Libraries are also sharing lots of creative content online, including Rhyme-Times and Story-Times for children and eBook reviews for all ages. Search #KingstonLibrariesLive on Twitter or Facebook to find out more.
There are so many ways to keep involved and up to date with theatres and other cultural hubs right now, so get moving, get creative and have fun!
Image credit: Gaelle Marcel (Unsplash)