I have been to the Globe twice this summer (to see Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing) and enjoyed both times immensely. I’d never read either of the plays (just looked up the plots on Wikipedia) but I loved the experience of seeing them live.
So when this opportunity arose I jumped at it. My local cinema was broadcasting a live performance of King Lear – the first time the Globe Theatre has done so.
I was impressed – the cameras always gave you a clear view and you got a good indication of what it is like to see a production live. Obviously not as good as the real thing but the equivalent of standing in the crowd near to the front of the stage. Picture and sound quality were very good and you got to sit down in a comfy seat for three hours in the warm. There’s a lot to be said in favour of that on a chilly September evening.
All the actors were very good in their roles, with the main character of Lear being portrayed brilliantly. The play, despite being a tragedy, did have a number of barbed lines by the King that raised a laugh, mainly at the expense of his wayward kin. Maybe it’s the fact that I have daughters myself that made things ring true. Hopefully my vanity and conceit are not great enough to kick off events such as these.
When I booked my ticket it was around £18, which is only a bit cheaper for me than going to a performance if I bought a standing ticket and paid my travel costs. Still, that’s only because getting to the Globe is a possibility for me. By the end of the event I thought it was a fair price to pay, especially given the small number of people at the showing, the price of tickets to the event in general and the opportunity you are given to attend a show that you most likely would not be able to get to see otherwise.
I would definitely go to one of these cinema broadcasts again for other events and I would like the Globe to do this again for other productions.