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Royal Ballet cinema showings 2017-18


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21 minutes ago, Fiz said:

I am so disappointed. When we first started watching the live stream of the Royal Ballet it was affordable. We went to see all of them. It is now over £20 a ticket. We will not be going anymore.

 

Yes. I stopped when it went over £15. Last time I went I think it was £13 (when a normal ticket was £8-11, depending what time you went). Normal tix now £9-12, so as it was £18 last time I enquired, and didn't bother going in, if its now over a score, I certainly will be giving it a miss. :-(

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There is hardly any ballet here apart from occasional visits from Ballet Cymru and Moscow Ballet so that was my main way of getting my ballet fix especially since I am not dancing anymore. I think the cinemas are just being greedy. The price rise for us is nearly £4 and I can't believe costs have increased that much.

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10 hours ago, Kate_N said:

There are 3 cinemas in my town that show RB, and other simulcasts eg National Theatre Live. They vary in price between up to £22 (or even £30 for New York Met Opera live simulcast) to £13 at the local Odeon.

 

£13 is pretty good!

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Yes, it's not the nicest cinema, but the picture & sound were good.

 

Although I rarely attend these screenings - I am sceptical of the ways they are sold - they're really not "live" and I think that they have the potential to suggest to big national subsidised companies that simply performing in London, and then simulcasting, is enough. It's not.

 

Most people in the UK don't live in London, and for decades arts policy-makers, artistic directors, and other funders have ignored that obligation to all of the UK. 

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31 minutes ago, Kate_N said:

Although I rarely attend these screenings - I am sceptical of the ways they are sold - they're really not "live"

 

 

I think we can take the assertions by the various companies on trust. After all if they falsely claim a broadcast is live it's easily disproved!

 

Royal Opera and Royal Ballet  are live transmissions unless clearly labelled "Encore". They do tend to have an earlier filming of the same cast but I assume that's to resolve any technical filming difficulties and to have a back up if transmission on the designated night fails. When that happens, my experience is that they make an announcement. It also enables them to iron out any problems for the eventual release to DVD by slicing in a cut from the earlier recording.

 

Bolshoi transmissions sometimes are live, sometimes are repeats but it's easy to check - here's one convenient link:

 

http://www.pathelive.com/programme/the-bolshoi-ballet-2017-2018-1#programme

 

National Theatre show a lot of repeats but since they hardly ever transfer to DVD it's often one's only chance to see a favoured broadcast again.

 

The Met broadcasts are live but inevitably subject to transmission delays in the UK because of time zone differences.

 

Generally speaking I find repeat showings tend to be cheaper! I agree prices have risen but it's still an amazing deal - particularly for those of us who can't afford to get to get to London to see the shows live.

 

 

               

Edited by David
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Oh I know the difference between a live simulcast and the replay ("Encore"). What I meant is more basic, that a live broadcast is NOT a live performance for anyone except those in the actual theatre where the performance is taking place. The other so-called "live" performances are actually mediated, not live.

 

The very fact that theres a misunderstanding here (or that you think I've misunderstood which is not the case!) demonstrates the way that calling  these mediated simulcasts "live performances" middies the waters.

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27 minutes ago, Fiz said:

Our local Odeon is now charging £21.50, Kate. With two of us going, it's a good deal of money that we could use for other things since we live on a fixed income.

 

Yes, and that is more than I pay for most of my real 'live' tickets at the ROH. It seems that these tickets are simply priced according to local situations and what the cinemas think they can get away with (as with most commercial products). Are they being charged a huge amount for the 'licence' (or whatever) to show the screenings? From the point of view of the ROH the screenings should be regarded as 'outreach', going some way towards justifying the level of public funding received by an organisation based in London, but of course they're working with commercial partners. It would be interesting to know how the finances of all this are worked out and whether or not the ROH has any say in ticket prices.

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I apologise if I misunderstood your meaning Kat_N. I think most of us assume that when a Company speaks of a "live" transmission, they mean that they are actually filming and transmitting the performance as it is taking place.

 

Obviously it is not the same as being there but still the next best thing. Indeed while it is a different experience it is often very illuminating as one sees so much more detail than one does in the theatre - as of course one does if a DVD is eventually issued, though that doesn't always happen.

 

 

 

I

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25 minutes ago, bridiem said:

.... , but of course they're working with commercial partners. It would be interesting to know how the finances of all this are worked out and whether or not the ROH has any say in ticket prices.

 

As the prices seem to be consistent between the performing companies, both here and world-wide but vary between the various cinema networks, I suspect these are commercial decisions largely determined by the cinema networks and that the performing companies pretty well well have to take it or leave it! The same applies to the commercial theatre transmissions where similar pricing patterns obtain.

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43 minutes ago, Fiz said:

I wonder if our local cinema is trying to price it out of existence. The screenings aren't very well attended, particularly the none traditional ballets. 

 

I agree. Sometimes, sitting in a pretty well empty cinema  watching one of the 'non-traditional' Royal Ballet shows I wonder how on earth they can make this pay or indeed how long it can continue. Obviously the RB has a vested interest in getting their stuff out there and they don't want their relays priced out of the market. Equally the cinema networks need to show a profit. It is of course a world-wide initiative  and I don't know how far it is justifed by results in other countries. On the other hand, the 'traditional' RB and RO relays are often completely sold out and they have to arrange repeats so there must be a market of sorts here in the UK.

 

The comparison is made with the cost of tickets at the ROH itself but for me, living 200 miles away from London,  that is not the real problem. It's the add-ons - public transport, particularly rail fares and, when there isn't a matinee, the hotel costs that ratchet up the prices for me and make a trip to the cinema the only viable alternative.

 

And it's when there isn't a matinee performance OR a cinema relay as is happening too often this season, that I am really miffed!!!!

 

 

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Bizarre how much it varies around the country! Agree that it's likely due to the various chains rather than the ROH. 

 

For comparison, I have 2 nearest cinemas that show RB performances: an Odeon & a Showcase cinema. The Odeon charges £13.50 for an adult & the Showcase charges £15.45 (bigger screen & comfier seats). I checked prices for the upcoming Alice as well as Manon/Swan Lake next year & the prices were all the same. No idea if encore showings vary in price. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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1 minute ago, Petunia said:

Here it's 25€uros :huh: and sometimes there are just about 20 people at the cinema.

 

That's interesting Petunia. Thank you. About the same as the highest UK prices quoted here! It would be interesting to hear the prices charged in other countries.

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17 minutes ago, Petunia said:

Here it's 25€uros :huh: and sometimes there are just about 20 people at the cinema.

 

yes, I went to one show in a 800 seat screen (there are 2 large and 6 smaller screens in my local Vue) and there were 10 of us in there; though other screenings I've attended there were more like 80-100. Mind you, Croydon isn't exactly a centre of culture unless you count clubbing, drinking and street fighting...

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Only been once to one of these screenings, at a cinema in Feltham (I'd just got off the plane at Heathrow) lost sound first, then vision of the last ten minutes of a ballet I'd never seen before.  Decided I will stick with live performance. 

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I very rarely go to any kind of cinema relay, as I live within easy reach of the "real thing" and can get standing tickets for much less than the cost of a cinema ticket.  However, when I do, once or twice a year, it's usually Met Opera Live, which is *very* expensive in London (it's difficult to find a venue showing one for less than £30 without any kind of member's discount).  £30 is expensive, but if there's a particular cast or production I want to see in something, I justify the expense on the basis that it's a damn sight cheaper than flying to New York.

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I have been to some of  the Met's streamed performances. I am in the fortunate position of being able to go to the  encore performances which are marginally cheaper than the initial streaming. I have also been to a few of the Bolshoi's streamed performances. The prices you quote for the RB's streamed performances seem in line with the sort of price charged for the Met and the Bolshoi.Although I expect that the Met and Bolshoi performances will cost more for the 2017-18 season because of the drop in the value of the pound.

 

It would be interesting to be able to compare the prices charged for the RB's performances in this country with those charged for them in the rest of Europe.As far as the RB's coverage across Europe and North America is concerned the ROH website enables you to check to see which communities have

 cinemas showing the streamed performances. I imagine that coverage and attendances are somewhat greater in areas with large expat communities than they are elsewhere.

 

 

Coverage does not seem to be that extensive in North America. If you look at the  Ballet Alert website you will find that there are complaints about the limited number of cinemas showing the RB's performances.The comments about the availability of streamed performances are a real eyeopener and suggest, not for the first time, that all is not well with the ROH organisation which handles such things. There appears to be  someone who is a "Cinema Account Coordinator"  but whether he or she actually co-ordinates anything is anyone's guess. I bet if you asked either the coordinator or the  ROH's international distributor who was responsible for the shambles they would blame each other. But then if the ROH came rather late to the  table it has to pick up the crumbs which are available. It no longer has the major international opera company that it once had.As far as streamed performances are concerned I have no doubt that the ROH is more interested in streaming opera performances with Sir Tony conducting and sometimes, less than ideal casts, than ensuring that ballet performances given by a truly world class company are seen by the widest possible audience.  For me the title "Cinema Account Coordinator" has a certain nebulous quality to it suggesting that the incumbent may not have a great deal to do.

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I think I've seen £25 for the RB somewhere, which I find truly shocking.  I did manage to get into one RB screening - Wimbledon, can't remember what, last year - for £11 or so, but think that was probably down to someone mis-programming the system :)  Of course, the satellite reception equipment is quite an outlay for a cinema, and needs to be paid for, but even so, there are limits.  I tend to start balking when I can't get into the cinema for less or the same than/as I'd pay in the theatre.

 

There *have*  been various 2-for-1 offers around, for RB and Bolshoi, but of course that presupposes that you have someone to go with to whatever your local cinema is.

 

What I object to is Bolshoi recordings from several years ago being sold for the same price as a live screening.   I'd happily go and see some of them again, but not at the full price.

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The RB screenings have moved from this huge popcorn palace with 15 screens to a much nicer 1920's cinema which has recently been refurbished and the technical equipment is excellent, we never experienced any glitches. (They don't sell popcorn, which is a bonus.) Sadly there is absolutely no advertising of these screenings, so it's still an insider thing, I believe.

I can't come to London as often as I'd like so I'm quite content as it is.

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The live broadcast of Anastasia last season was EUR26 over here (that included a glass of bubbly that I didn't need). I saw Woolf Works in Toulouse in an encore screening for below EUR20 I think.

 

The main deterrent for me last season was the lack of encore matinee screenings. With the time difference, the live broadcast is bound to finish at around 11.15/11.30 pm which, with travel back home, I find too late on most days of the week but certainly on a day in the middle of the week.

 

 

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There's no two for one or use of the Limitless card for Royal Ballet or Opera screenings at our local Odeon. I actually bothered to tweet them last night to ask about the price increase but they haven't bothered to reply.

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  • alison changed the title to Royal Ballet cinema showings 2017-18

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