Romantics Anonymous to stream live from the Bristol Old Vic in September
Following runs in London and Bristol, and after a Covid-impacted U.S. tour, the charming new musical will undertake a "digital tour" online.
Romantics Anonymous, Emma Rice's adaptation of the beloved 2010 French-Belgian romantic comedy film, will stream online from 22-26 September. The fully-staged show will be performed live at the Bristol Old Vic each night, and broadcast around the world.
In a unique partnership, the producers, Wise Children, will work with a range of international theatre venues, allowing them to sell tickets for the stream - which will then be tailored at each "performance" to that theatre's region - creating a "digital tour". Theatres participating range from the Royal Lyceum Theatre in Edinburgh to St Ann's Warehouse in New York, and the Singapore Repertory Theatre. Tickets will be priced from £15.
The cast has not been announced, but many are expected to be reprising their roles from previous productions. The cast members will form a "bubble" in Bristol to allow the production to be staged without social distancing.
"I have devoted my life to the live experience and the collective imagination - things that have proved impossible over the last few months," Emma Rice said in a statement. "Whilst nothing will be able to replace the thrill of a night out at the theatre, this live broadcast is going to be as close to that delicious experience as we can possibly make it! Live, fresh, fun and intimate, this will remind us of what it is to share stories, hear music and, if true love has its way, even kiss. Imagine that! We are taking the utmost care to protect all of our valued team and, for one week only, we can all experience a live performance again, get lost in a wonderful love story and remember what it was to be socially intimate!"
The lyrics and music for Romantics Anonymous was written by Michael Kooman and Christopher Dimond. Emma Rice wrote the show's book, in addition to providing direction. Design is by Lez Brotherston with lighting by Malcolm Rippeth. Choreography is by Etta Murfitt.
Previously the Artistic Director of Kneehigh Theatre in Cornwall, Emma Rice is perhaps best known for her iconic production of Brief Encounter, which was first seen in the UK in 2007 and has played around the world, including a season on Broadway in 2010. She became Artistic Director of Shakespeare's Globe in 2016, but departed after only two years in the post, before establishing her own production company, Wise Children.
Romantics Anonymous had its world premiere at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse in 2017, and the production was remounted at the Bristol Old Vic in late 2019. It was due to play a series of dates in the USA, including seasons in Los Angeles and Washington DC, but the tour was cancelled as part of the Covid-19 shutdown.
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