Why haven’t more companies explored live streaming?

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Richard Watts

Streaming theatre, opera and dance productions live into cinemas has succeeded overseas, so what's holding local companies back?

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The Australian Ballet's Benedicte Bemet and François-Eloi Lavignac. Photography Kate Longley.

Launched in 2009, National Theatre Live was a bold experiment that beamed the company’s production of Phèdre, starring Helen Mirren, to 70 cinemas across the UK and a further five cinemas in Europe. While concerns were raised that a filmed production could never capture the magic of live theatre, the experiment was an immediate success, according to economist David Throsby, who helped evaluate the results.  

About the author

Richard Watts is ArtsHub's National Performing Arts Editor; he also presents the weekly program SmartArts on community radio station Three Triple R FM.

The founder of the Emerging Writers' Festival, Richard currently serves as the Chair of La Mama Theatre's Committee of Management and on the Green Room Awards Independent Theatre panel.

He is a life member of the Melbourne Queer Film Festival, and in 2017 was awarded the status of Melbourne Fringe Festival Living Legend.

Twitter: @richardthewatts