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ROH Live Link - RBS Romeo and Juliet


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We have just returned from the cinema after watching an amazing performance from the Royal Ballet Company, Lauren Cuthbertson and Federico Bonelli were captivating as Romeo and Juliet and had myself 2 daughters and Nana in tears at the end. Its the first time we have attended a live link performance and were astounded by the extras such as backstage shots, interviews with Macmillans wife, Dame Monica Mason and Lauren Cutherbertson along with Federico Bonelli. We were also treat to behind the scenes of sword fighting and other feasts!!

 

We definitely look forward to the next performance!!

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How fantastic! Did you know it would be a Live Link performance when you booked?

 

Edit: sorry! Just realised you saw it at the cinema! Was wondering if the people who saw it at the ROH knew in advance that it was a live link, but if you only saw the extras at the cinema then perhaps it is worth watching on screen as opposed to live!

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We have just returned from the cinema after watching an amazing performance from the Royal Ballet Company, Lauren Cuthbertson and Federico Bonelli were captivating as Romeo and Juliet and had myself 2 daughters and Nana in tears at the end. Its the first time we have attended a live link performance and were astounded by the extras such as backstage shots, interviews with Macmillans wife, Dame Monica Mason and Lauren Cutherbertson along with Federico Bonelli. We were also treat to behind the scenes of sword fighting and other feasts!!

 

We definitely look forward to the next performance!!

 

Thanks for the report - sounds FAB!

I was tempted to forego my back-of-the-amphi ticket to watch it at the cinema myself, sounds like I should have done so! Whenever they do these broadcasts, whether to cinema or to Big Screens outdoors, it seems they do like to do these extras in the intervals. A shame we don't get to see them in the ROH!

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I too attended last evening's performance at my local Odeon in Taunton. The screen (their largest) was virtually full. We were supplied with an official ROH synopsis and full cast list this time which was a great improvement

 

There was a wonderful cast and I thought the company as a whole were on cracking form. It wasn't just a Cuthbertson and Bonelli show. The rest of the cast had a chance to shine too, particlarly Mercutio and the harlots. I often think that had I the physique for ballet, I should have loved to have been a harlot in R&J. They have so much fun and where else in ballet do you get a chance to spit? Subject for another discussion perhaps ie you favourite role should YOU have had the chance, not the chance to spit

 

As well as the 'extras', you get a lot of close ups in the cinema. Sometimes good, sometimes not so good but merciless in that errors or slips do not escape notice. What you do not always get is the big picture. I should have liked more full screen images for the ballroom scenes for instance, but we did get to see some of the wonderful costumes in close up

 

I did not particularly take to Lauren Cuthbertson's Aurora in "Sleeping Beauty" which was the subject of the last live link. Too many wobbles and not a lot of personality I thought. But last evening her Juliet really worked for me. She and Federico seemed very self assured and confident and danced well together. The balcony and bedroom pas de deux were wonderfully uninhibited and full of emotion

 

The orchestra were on good form last evening as well. We had a few glitches with the sound. I have no idea whether this was peculiar to our cinema or general. It would be good to know. There were several momentary breaks in the sound transmission and a few really horrible screeches which sounded like something hitting the microphone

 

All in all a really wonderful evening, very well received in my local Odeon. There was total silence throughout the performance unbroken by the sound of sweets being unwrapped or popcorn being eaten!

 

I realise that the excitement today will be the ROH Live link but it would be good to hear from others who went to the cinema performance last evening and from those who were actually there. Did those who were there enjoy it just as much? I know some of the regular balletcoers are weary of R&J but do bear in mind that there are always some to whom it new or those who never tire of it like me

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I suppose if I lived back down in London I would be still be tempted to actually go and watch the ballet like zxDaveM as I guess you cant beat the actual ambience when sat in the audience. However we didnt seem to have any of the gliches that patsomerset had at their cinema therefore it was a very enjoyable smooth transmission. I am not sure whether the audience were aware of the cameras in the ROH Spannerandpony, during the intervals it was displaying lots of positive tweets from all around the world.....Brazil, Prague, Belfast and even some of the performers in the second interval!!

At times it was hard to believe it was actually a live performance as the continuity was superb and we felt priviledged to have access to backstage views and interviews. It definitely gives a different perspective compared to actually being there and it is difficult to compare the two. When watching close ups of facial expressions and footwork etc of all the cast along with specific/overall shots it made us even more aware and appreciative of the committment and hard work that everyone puts in along with the backstage and preparations.

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I totally agree with amber21. If I lived nearer to London I would opt to go to the actual venue and see several different casts in the same production over a short period of time. You can't beat going to the 'real' theatre for atmosphere. I like to get there early and watch the audience arriving. It's all part of the performance. Nor can you really compare a live transmission with being there; it's just different. The cinema transmissions are a wonderful example of how technology can be used to show high quality performances to more people and hopefully introduce ballet, opera and drama to a new audience. The extras you get as part of the live transmissions do help to show the hard work and dedication that go into the performances as did the excellent 'live' day from ROH today

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Well, I saw it in my local cinema as well - totally interruption-free, I'm pleased to say. I'd been a little hesitant about the casting, having not got much from Cuthbertson on the big screens in the O2 last year, and knowing that I hadn't thought Bonelli was back to full fitness when I saw his Romeo back in January, but clearly the cinema is a completely different matter: you could see every flicker of expression on Cuthbertson's face. Admittedly, there were times when I thought the cameras should have pulled back slightly rather than go for close-ups because there were other characters whose reactions we needed to see, but then that seems to be par for the course for live broadcasts. I must say, the ROH audience appeared to be extremely enthusiastic at the end (and so did the one in my cinema).

 

I missed some of the pre-show stuff while I was off hunting for the all-important cast sheet, although it sounded good. What did surprise me, though, was that they didn't appear to take the opportunity to plug the YouTube streaming the next day: I thought it would have been an ideal follow-up once they'd got the audience's interest.

 

Oh, and I still wonder, as I do with other companies' broadcasts, why they can't show something more interesting than the auditorium for 20 minutes during the interval. Rehearsal footage, company class, guided tour of the building? Mind you, the piece about swordfighting was interesting. Can't remember whether it was then or elsewhere that Cuthbertson brought up the story about her Romeo with blood all over his face ...

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Thanks to both Amber & Alison for reporting no sound 'glitches' at their cinemas. I shall attempt to contact my local cinema about this as something that might be fixed before "Fille" in May as it would not seem to be general

 

Agree about the close ups sometimes being misplaced. You need to see what is being reacted to as well as the reaction

 

I am pretty sure mention was made to the ROH live transmission somewhere at the end of the trailers for "Fille" and "Rigoletto". You may have missed it in your search for a cast list.

 

Yes, it was after the swordfighting feature that Cuthbertson told her story about Romeo appearing on the bed with a slashed face ...

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It's the extras and seeing close-ups that attract me more to the cinema broadcasts. Also that little unimportant aspect of not having to deal with flights, hotels etc to get to the ROH :-)

Sadly R&J was not showing anywhere near me, but the POB's La Bayadere was. There were no extras at all, just the view of the audience during the intervals. The Opera Bastille looks like a soulless and depressing venue, never been there so I have no idea of its technological or other virtues but I think I'll stick to the Garnier.

I wonder if there's any chance of R&J being repeated, Giselle, which was broadcast live in January 2011 IIRC seems to be getting a lot of repeat outings.

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It's the extras and seeing close-ups that attract me more to the cinema broadcasts. Also that little unimportant aspect of not having to deal with flights, hotels etc to get to the ROH :-)

Sadly R&J was not showing anywhere near me, but the POB's La Bayadere was. There were no extras at all, just the view of the audience during the intervals. The Opera Bastille looks like a soulless and depressing venue, never been there so I have no idea of its technological or other virtues but I think I'll stick to the Garnier.

I wonder if there's any chance of R&J being repeated, Giselle, which was broadcast live in January 2011 IIRC seems to be getting a lot of repeat outings.

I R&J does seem to be being repeated elsewhere on other dates in other countries. I don't know where you live but if you go the the ROH website, there is a list of where and when

 

I think the ROH do make a great effort to make the cinema audiences feel welcome and valued. I love the extras particularly the backstage views and input from the dancers and coaches. Some broadcasts just show the ballet, that's all, no introduction, no synopsis, nothing and it does seem soulless

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Sadly R&J was not showing anywhere near me, but the POB's La Bayadere was.

 

You lucky thing! Are you UK-based? I'd have loved to have seen that.

 

Don't know what it was about the 22nd: there was apparently a Mikhailovsky broadcast on the same date, too!

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I think the ROH do make a great effort to make the cinema audiences feel welcome and valued. I love the extras particularly the backstage views and input from the dancers and coaches. Some broadcasts just show the ballet, that's all, no introduction, no synopsis, nothing and it does seem soulless

 

The ROH have plenty of experience of this sort of thing now, of course, what with having done big-screen relays for umpteen years, where they needed to do something to fill the intervals. And of course the Bolshoi have bilingual introductions and so on, plus live interviews during the intervals. I do rather get the feeling that the originators can't be bothered if all I can see is a static view of the auditorium for 20 minutes or so.

 

Getting back to the R&J broadcasts, I've since remembered a couple of the occasions which I thought could have been done better: various close-ups of crowd scenes where all you really got was a blur of movement; focusing on Tybalt in the ballroom scene when they really needed to pull out and also show Romeo searching in vain for his mask before putting his hand up to try and block his face from Tybalt's view; a little more time showing Juliet being told the identity of her new love by the nurse and reacting to it. Just a few little things like that which would have made the logic in how things unfolded a little clearer to the viewer. But all in all I thought it worked pretty well.

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You lucky thing! Are you UK-based? I'd have loved to have seen that.

 

No, I'm in Italy. I've been wanting to see Aurelie Dupont live for the longest time, and with the POB's policy of announcing casting at the last minute when there are no more tickets, this looked like a perfect opportunity. She was wonderful, but it was a pity that Dorothee Gilbert, who was originally cast as Gamzatti, was injured.

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Talking of Tybalt, I'd meant to say that that appeared to be an extremely good catch of the sword by Bennet Gartside when Mercutio tossed it to him during Act II (especially considering some of the less than successful tosses I've seen in the run!).

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I took my mother to see this at the Cinema as a starter to her birthday celebrations to come the following day!

We both thouroughly enjoyed the experience and left with tears in eyes but very happy.

 

Having seen Lauren Cuthbertson in Cinderella at the ROH, then at the cinema in Sleeping Beauty I have seen her performances grow, as has been said above she was a little wobbly in places as Beauty, but as Juliet she shone with all the emotion of the role clear to see. Her dancing was light as she seemed to skim over the stage with beautiful technique and grace. She portrayed a wonderful innocent girl, then clearly showed the transition to a grown woman as she found true love. The balcony scene was full of new love excitement, but I know that for me, the cinema experience was complete as the cameras closed in on shot to allow us to see the real tears shed by Lauren Cutbertson as Juliet made the decision to take the potion! That I am sure would have been missed by many in the theatre.

Admittedly there were occasionally strange angles and close-ups were a wider view may have been preferred, but overall the positives outweighed any negatives.

Special mention must go as has been said to Mercutio and the Harlots for excellent energy filled performances!

 

The cinema audience seems to be growing as word is spreading - we were in a bigger screen at the multipex this time! Most people seemed moved by the production as the audience fell very silent toward the dramatic conclusion and I only heard positive voices as we left.

 

Sadly I cannot make "Fille" on May 16th, but I hope that there will be many more Cinema showings to come.....

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the cinema experience was complete as the cameras closed in on shot to allow us to see the real tears shed by Lauren Cutbertson as Juliet made the decision to take the potion! That I am sure would have been missed by many in the theatre.

 

Well, I missed it in the cinema :). As for which screens the performance is on, I'd guess that may vary according to the expected numbers, and perceived popularity of the ballet: it was a larger screen than previously in both the cinemas nearest to me, but the cinemas have to commit to choosing a screen so early for advance booking that I expect they'll play it safe and go for larger screens.

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