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Topic: National Theatre Live

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UJ
Damiac
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RE: National Theatre Live
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And now I've seen it. Utterly fab. And it was so cool to see clips from the archive.

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DaModerator
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We've recorded it, so hopefully we'll be able to watch it all over the weekend, but life is so busy atm!

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Professional Thud-er
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I was curious when I saw people discussing this on Twitter so I tuned in.  Just in time to see two Being Human actors within the space of two minutes!  Lucy and Emeris.  LOL  

I confess I am not a theatre buff.  Very picky when it comes to anything I watch really, so the little bit I saw (I think it was a biblical play) before RL took me away was a bit boring to me.  But I am curious to see some of the other footage at some point.

 

 



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UJ
Damiac
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It's definitely worth watching, whimsy. Mind you, if you're not into theatre, maybe it's just not your cup of tea. But the biblical play was notable as part of the history of the NT, that they staged this day long event. There's plenty more to enjoy.

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DaModerator
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The thing about the National, in particular, is the range of plays that they produce. I suspect you joined at one of the more serious moments in the broadcast, but (I'm hoping anyway) there'll also be many light-hearted sections.

I'm not the world's biggest "buff" either, but I am enjoying plays more as I get older; although you still can't beat a good musical!

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UJ
Damiac
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Not National Theatre but still a live broadcast - last night I finally saw the RSC's Richard II with David Tennant. The NT are still the daddies at filming live theatre. Hytner just has this touch to make filmed live theatre it's own thing. The RSC also find it necessary to include a patronising introduction and include interviews better suited to the DVD, or they could have been saved as an extra after the play. When Sondheim's Company with Neil Patrick Harris was broadcast, the interview with the producer and Jon Cryer was included at the end. I don't want to hear about the play when I'm trying to watch it. Found Tennant a bit shallow at first but from Richard's return from Ireland onwards, he blew it out of the water. Other honours got to the Yorks, Oliver Ford Davies and Marty Cruickshank, and also Emma Hamilton as the Queen and I think that was only slightly influenced by already having seen her at Foyles.

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Damiac
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I'm not sure if this is the best thread to post this in... but it seems like the most appropriate

When I was at the NT Archive this week, I asked whether they had any plans to make the material which they hold there available online.  The archivist (?) seemed genuinely quite pleased about my enquiry, and assured me that this was something they very much wanted to work towards achieving.  It seems that the only bar to them doing this is the cost......NT don't actually own the copyrights, so it would cost them a huge amount of money to do.  She did thank me for the enquiry though, and suggested that the more public interest that was shown in the idea, the more likely it is to happen. 

Although the archive is actually free to visit, for what it cost me in travel expenses to visit there, I personally would be more than happy to pay some sort of subscription fee, or maybe pay per production type of arrangement if that would help to move things along....and I have decided to drop them an email saying as much.  If anyone else is interested in being able to access the archive online (they have a vast amount of material, not just recordings) then I suggest that you let them know too!



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Damiac
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The archivist also told me that an new app has just been released called National Theatre Backstage.  This article explains it far better than I could hope to -  https://www.thestage.co.uk/news/2015/national-theatre-backstage-app-peers-behind-scenes/

Sadly (for me!) it only seems to be available on apple at the moment.... but for anyone who can - https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/national-theatre-backstage/id1006110950?mt=8

 



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DMF
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fifi, thank you for these NT live updates - both the app and the interest in online archives are exciting!

Hmm how curious... An NT production you would think they own all material relating to it. I guess with photos the copyright is with the photographer, although it is NT who manages the press materials and they are the 'advertisers'. I'd assumed the filmed screenings were also done by in-house crew but perhaps it is an external company who do the filming and own the copyright ? Perhaps NT could get sponsors or advertisers to help fund too. But, there is undoubtedly a huge and international audience who would be willing to pay for online material.

We have in the past contacted NT regarding DVDs of recordings and received a similar response - and I find it hard to believe there has not already been a lot of interest and requests so I am taking it with a pinch of salt. In the past I have pondered the idea of a petition but wonder how much interest that would actually attract?

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Damiac
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I know nothing about copyright of plays...but I wonder if she's referring to the copyright of the script?  I find it very hard to believe that nt don't own the copyright for their actual production recordings (that would be madness, right?!)  But I can see that the text itself would be copyrighted, and that making a production available online might have copyright issues.  Although the Digital Theatre app manages.....possibly by making their recordings pay per view?



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Team DaMo
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I'm not too impressed with the app... in the sense that you can apparently only use it on an ipad!!!  I have an iphone and I can't download it on that - it says it only works with ipad.  I also have a macbook but I don't think you can use apps on a laptop (???) either.  Viewing it in the apple store it looks like you can purchase digital programmes (for about a fiver) and access backstage content though.  If you have an ipad that is!  Perhaps they'll make it available for other devices at a later date??

Regarding plays, I don't know how it works.  I suppose neither actors, writers, Directors, composers, musicians, lighting technicians or indeed anyone has given permission for the material to be released to the public domain and sold.  In fact putting a price on the material might be more of an issue than it being available for free even?  Does all the money go to the NT if they sell the recorded plays somehow?  Not all the NT Live plays are plays on at the National Theatre either are they?  But are they all National Theatre productions even when on in different theatres?  If not, how would that work?!

i suggested on the Travelling Light recording thread:

If the NT really would consider releasing recordings at least of those plays which have been filmed for NT Live, I wonder whether it would be worth making a larger, completely general poll and posting it on twitter/social media?  

My first thought was to create a petition on this site: https://www.change.org/en-GB

I know it isn't really a petition as such but I also know I've signed things like this in the past and some have got tens of thousands of signatures.

It occurs to me that at the moment Benedict Cumberbatch is playing Hamlet and people have bought tickets a year in advance, paid crazy prices and all sorts of madness... and I know it is being screened via NT Live... and I am sure many of those who will see it and many others who won't get to see it would love a DVD of it... and may sign such a petition.  It seems like a good time for such a thing?

It isn't to say it could get Travelling Light (or The Hard Problem) released, but if the general process were in place to get such films released on DVD &/or online generally then there is a chance for future plays with Damien in.

I'm just thinking if you got thousands of signatures by some means surely NT Live would think about it.  I can't see how something like this couldn't end up making everyone involved a great deal of money...?!

What do you think?

I'm sure I am being naive in the idea... but we can't be the only people who would love to be able to watch/re-watch NT Live plays...

Just thinking: one person expressing interest is one person expressing interest.  But how many people go to see a play?  How many people are potentially interested in this kind of thing at least for some play or other?



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Damiac
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I have been saying this a long time, why wont they sell the play on DVD if many people want to see it? I mean they might have contracts with cinemas (NT Live) so cinemas will get money for showing the plays, but after that, like a year after last performance, why don't they just release the play on DVD and make our lives easier. You can go see it on free on the NT Archive after a while, but this could be more international way to make money and fans happy. So not a bad idea at all.

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Team DaMo
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The archivist told fifi they'd be happy to make the material accessible to all everywhere... if anyone had a spare £400,000 hanging about...  This leads me to believe it would not be an easy thing to achieve!!!  That said, when you think of the price of a theatre ticket... just put on a few fundraising shows to raise the money if that is the issue.... 



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Molonian
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Just got back from seeing a wonderful NTL "Madness of George III" from the Nottingham Playhouse. Apparently it's one of the very few theatres these days which still has production teams for costume, scenery, music etc and the result was amazing. The curtain at the front of the stage was a deep blue painted with gold highlights, and draped in the fashion of a woman's skirt of the period. Beautiful! There was actually scenery which changed as you went from one area to another (slides and pulley system) and the costume was bang on period. I've seen so many modern productions recently I'd forgotten how much I appreciated scenery and costume - even the music was of period and not modern!
Mark Gatiss (pronounced Gaytis, apparently - I've always said Gattis) was George III and had me in tears more than once. My son-in-law, Kieron, had to be persuaded to go and was raving about it all the way home, and Mark Gatiss in particular.
Another of Damien's old workmates, Adrian Scarborough (Colin in "Crashing") was Dr Willis - the man credited with 'curing' George III the first time round - for me he more than have Mark Gatiss a run for his money!
All the cast were good, couldn't fault any one of them.

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DMF
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Thanks for sharing Ellie, it sounds like a beautiful production, glad you had a great experience - bravo to NT Live! What a cast, Mark Gatiss and Adrian Scarborough both former Damien co-stars.

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Marvellous Molonian Moderator
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Sounds like a fantastic performance, Ellie. I'm sorry I missed it. So envious of Mark Gattis' incredible talent - acting, writing, directing. Hopefully there'll be an encore screening at some point.

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