October’s programme of LIVE productions at The Wellesley opens on Tuesday 3 October with the Royal Opera’s latest version of Puccini’s ‘La Bohème’.
This new staging – the first for more than 40 years – updates the 1830’s Paris settings of the garret where painter Marcello and poet Rodolpho are living in abject poverty, the streets of Paris and the swanky restaurant where those at the opposite of the social scale play.
With Australian soprano Nicole Car as the doomed Mimi and American tenor Michael Fabiano as her lover Rodolpho, this has been described by critics as a ‘startlingly new production’. Antonio Pappano conducts a ‘finely crafted show’.
On Thursday 5 October the National Theatre’s acclaimed production of Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’ returns and offers audiences a further opportunity to see Benedict Cumberbatch in a role that attracted intense – even hysterical – media coverage when it opened in 2015.
The LIVE transmission became the most-watched NT production, seen by more than 800,000 viewers. Those who missed it the first time – or wish to see it again – are now given a second chance to watch one of the stage’s finest actors as ‘a blazing five-star Hamlet’.
The Royal Shakespeare Company’s Rome season comes to an end with the fourth play in the series – a modern dress production of ‘Coriolanus’ – transmitted LIVE on Wednesday 11 October.
The play’s depiction of social injustice begins graphically with a fork-lift truck lifting sacks of grain out of reach of Rome’s famished citizens.
With the out-of-touch ruling class struggling to control a discontented, restless populace, the great warrior Coriolanus becomes their reluctant leader. But he is no politician, only driven to power by his ambitious mother.
Sope Dirisu plays the title role of the ‘lonely colossus’ who cannot be the leader his people need. Modern resonances are implied but not underlined in this powerful production.
The Royal Ballet’s ‘eye-popping’ production of ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ first opened in 2011 to universal praise. It returns to launch the ROH autumn season and comes LIVE to The Wellesley on Monday 23 October.
This adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s wonderful story is packed with colour, inventiveness and sophisticated wizardry. The telling of the magical story includes stunning designs, puppetry, projections and visual surprises as well as dance.
Lauren Cuthbertson, Federico Bonelli, Ed Watson and Steven McCrae head the cast as Alice, the Knave of Hearts, White Rabbit and the Mad Hatter.
The London run of the ballet is already sold out so the LIVE transmission promises to be wonderful entertainment for the whole family – locally.
Tuesday 3 October ‘La Bohème’ (ROH) at 7.15pm
Thursday 5 October ‘Hamlet’ (NT) at 7.00pm
Wednesday 11 October ‘Coriolanus‘ (RSC) at 7.00pm
Monday 23 October ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland‘ (ROH) at 7.15pm