It's like a tour of the British theater scene on the cheap. Sundance Cinemas is bringing four taped performances of the National Theatre of London to downtown Houston starting in January and running through April.
And even in a city like Houston with its extensive theater scene, Sundance Cinemas expects these Theatre of London productions to do well.
"We actually run National Theatre of London captured live in our other locations. And patrons just love the opportunity to see a wider range of what's available in the cultural world out there," says Nancy Klasky Gribler, vice president of marketing for Sundance Cinemas. "National Theatre of London used to run in the Houston market. We're just bringing it back."
"In Madison, Wisconsin, we have a huge university in Madison with an amazing theater department so both the faculty and students are always eager to see these productions. San Francisco -- every performance sells out. Certainly it's a theater town, but it's a cultural town just like Houston is," Gribler says.
Gribler says the series appeals to theater buffs and those who follow the National Theatre of London. And it's all in high definition.
First up: The Collaborators, by John Hodge, who did Trainspotting, takes us to Moscow in 1938, described as "A dangerous place to have a sense of humor; even more so a sense of freedom. Mikhail Bulgakov, living among dissidents, stalked by secret police, has both. And then he's offered a poisoned chalice: a commission to write a play about Stalin to celebrate his sixtieth birthday. " Scheduled for January 2 at 7 p.m. and January 7 at 12:30 p.m.
Next: Travelling Light, written by Nicholas Wright, who also did The Last of the Duchess. "A heartwarming, funny and fascinating tribute to the Eastern European immigrants who became major players in Hollywood's golden age of cinema," starring the award-winning actor Antony Sher. Scheduled for February 13 at 7 p.m. and February 18 at 12.30 p.m.
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Third: Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors -- this time "with a contemporary and youthful urban edge." Scheduled for March 17 at 12.30 p.m. and March 19 at 7 p.m.
Finally: She Stoops to Conquer, "a classic restoration comedy with stunning period sets and costumes." Scheduled for April 7 at 12.30 p.m .and April 9 at 7 p.m.
For more information on Sundance Cinemas, go to www.sundancecinemas.com