A Night At The Theatre . . . At The Cinema


I don’t go to the theatre nearly enough.

There’s a very highly regarded one here in Dundee, so I really don’t have any excuse, either!

Like most people, I studied plays at school. Not just Shakespeare, either — Arthur Miller, Bertolt Brecht, Tennessee Williams. Then later, at university, there were plenty of others.

Typically we sat down to read them in a classroom setting — or on our own — rather than watching a performance (or, heaven forbid, performing them ourselves!)

It’s something I enjoyed, for the most part, but I can’t seem to find the enthusiasm for the theatre.

Perhaps it’s the fact that it seems to be the hallmark of a classy evening. It’s much less hassle for folks to go to the pub or the cinema!

This week, however, I finally managed it . . . after a fashion.

The play . . . wouldn’t be appreciated by “Friend” readers

Our local cinema (alongside a good number around the country) was broadcasting a performance live from the National Theatre in London.

The play was not one that would be appreciated by “Friend” readers, but I loved it nonetheless.

And, more importantly, I don’t think that the setting took anything away from the experience.

The idea of broadcasting live drama is a sound one — particularly for those towns with few theatres and plenty of cinemas.

While West End attendances have spiked recently, regional theatres are attracting smaller and smaller audiences.

Maybe that can be addressed by approaching the problem a little differently.

Maybe encouraging young people to see performances at a cinema, where the tickets will be cheaper and the surroundings a little less daunting, will awaken their enthusiasm?

Once productions with big-name actors like Kenneth Branagh, Dame Judi Dench and David Tennant have them hooked, surely they’ll head straight out to pick up a programme for their local theatre?

I know I will.

For more from the team, read our blog here.

Iain McDonald

Iain is Digital Content Editor at the "Friend", making him responsible for managing flow of interesting and entertaining content on the magazine's website and social media channels.