Laura Jane Matthewson will appear in the digital tour of Emma Rice’s critically-acclaimed musical adaptation of Romantics Anonymous, which will be performed at Bristol Old Vic, and broadcast live, direct to audience’s homes nationally and globally.
The world premiere of Romantics Anonymous was originally produced by Shakespeare’s Globe for the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse by special arrangement with Radio Mouse Entertainment.
Romantics Anonymous will be available to stream as a ‘digital tour’ between Tuesday 22 and Saturday 26 September, and tickets are available at www.wisechildrendigital.com
You’re appearing in Romantics Anonymous, what can you tell us about the show?
It is joyful, awkward, beautiful, whimsical, and very, VERY chocolatey.
This is a ‘digital tour’ how does it work?
We’re performing at Bristol Old Vic but to an empty auditorium, and each show is streamed live to an audience watching at home. Wise Children have partnered with theatres all around the UK, and around the world in fact, to make tickets available in different regions on different nights, so audiences can support their local theatre whilst watching the live show.
What opportunities does this new format bring for the production and the audience?
It’s going to be exciting for viewers to get up close and personal with the characters – the cameras will be onstage with us so the audience will feel very much in on the action in a way that they wouldn’t usually get to experience from the auditorium. It’s also great that you can watch from anywhere in the world – people who may never have had the chance to see the show will now have the opportunity!
How does it feel to be back rehearsing again, and how are you all keeping safe?
It’s feels AMAZING to be back in a rehearsal room. I know I felt slightly apprehensive after such a long break away from making theatre but, if anything, the time away has made us stronger. It feels like we’ve all come out of lockdown with a renewed sense of enthusiasm and gratitude to be doing what we love!
We’ve got some very strict COVID-19 measures in place courtesy of the brilliant team at Wise Children. We’ve all quarantined individually and were tested several times before our arrival in Bristol; we’re isolating as one big bubble for the duration of the project (zero contact with the outside world which sadly means no post rehearsal pub trips…).
We have our temperatures checked every morning before even entering the building and are being very strict with hand washing and sanitising everything we come into contact with. To be honest life inside the rehearsal room bubble feels so brilliantly normal that it’s easy to forget the state of the world, but then you find yourself queueing up to exit the building safely at lunchtime; or you have to enlist the help of a “Covid Officer” to intercept and sanitise your Amazon parcel and it all comes flooding back.
It’s just been announced that there will be a live audience on the last night, will you have to adapt the performance for having an audience again?
I don’t think it will affect the show logistically because we’re only adapting it very slightly for the live stream – but having live audience REACTIONS will probably mix things up a little! It will most likely be a bit longer to make space for all the laughter and applause (providing we do our jobs properly…).
What would you say to anyone thinking of booking to watch Romantic Anonymous?
There has never been a better time to escape reality for just a couple of hours and enter a world of chocolatey, heartwarming JOY – all from the comfort of your own home!