Accento (Arts News)

Celebrate World Theatre Day with Australian Theatre Live’s (Virus-) Free Theatre Streaming Festival

Since 1962 the International Theatre Institute has celebrated the art of theatre on 27 March each year. This year is unlike any other with Australian performing arts venues closed, and the neon lights aren’t glowing as bright on Broadway or the West End. Thankfully, the good people at Australian Theatre Live will be launching their (Virus-) Free Theatre Festival Online tonight.

Jonathan Biggins and Amanda Bishop | Photo by Brett Boardman

Four-time Logie Award winner, and the Creative Director of Australian Theatre Live, Grant Dodwell, aims to bring people together to reflect on the world-class quality of the Australian Theatre community. The festival begins tonight with the Sydney Theatre Company’s Wharf Revue. Written by theatre veterans Jonathan Biggins, Drew Forsythe, and Phillip Scott, this sharp satire pokes fun at our political leaders past and present.

Over the next three weeks, in an innovative pilot program, online audiences will be able to access great Australian theatre captured live onstage and broadcast through the Australian Theatre Live Facebook page, for FREE.

Australian Theatre Live is launching their first online streaming festival this week. Our best theatre will be online and FREE to watch, live-streamed to a virtual audience from high quality live recording.

Grant Dodwell – Creative Director, Australian Theatre Live

In its second week, 2 and 3 April at 8.00 pm AEST, there will be a live-stream of David Williamson’s Emerald City, a play which “sparkles like Sydney Harbour on a sunny day”, captured at Sydney’s intimate Griffin Theatre.

This will be followed by The Dapto Chaser, a dark comedy from the whip-smart playwright Mary Rachel Brown, who captures the world of greyhound racing with compassion, wit and humour which is scheduled for week three, 10 and 11 April at 8.00 pm AEST.

Australian Theatre Live’s broader library of plays includes Liberty Equality Fraternity, a brilliant comedy by Geoffrey Atherden, Rumplestiltskin, featuring the remarkable talents of Paul Capsis, and the iconic play, Away, by Michael Gow, starring Heather Mitchell. These will continue to be available On Demand and to rent for education streaming.

“As a not-for-profit organisation with limited funding, we ask participants to follow, like and share our page with others who are missing theatre during these isolating times.”

Grant Dodwell – Creative Director, Australian Theatre Live

Be part of a live audience enjoying theatre as you’ve never seen it before. Each week Australian Theatre Live will be live-streaming a new play, from Australia’s renowned theatre companies and featuring some of our best-known writers, directors and actors.

Australian Theatre Live Schedule | credit: Grant Dodwell

If you’re anything like me and miss the theatre, then mark these dates in your calendar and support Australian Theatre Live’s initiative to keep the arts visible in these unique times.

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