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Event Cinema

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Exhibition on Screen: Degas - Passion For Perfecti
November 11 & 14
Exhibition on Screen: Degas - Passion For Perfecti(2018)
EXHIBITION ON SCREEN journeys from the streets of Paris to the heart of a superb exhibition at the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge, whose extensive collection of Degas' works is the most representative in Britain. With exclusive access to view rare and diverse works, this film tells a fascinating story of Degas' pursuit for perfection through both experimentation with new techniques and lessons learnt from studying the past masters. Sometimes frustrated by his own failings, Degas was consumed by obsessive principles and failing eyesight but his determination to capture everyday life was evident in every mark he made. Never fully satisfied, many of Degas' drawings and sculptures were kept in private during his lifetime but, now through close examination, they can be seen as some of the most beautifully detailed and expressive works in the modern era.



Tawai: A Voice from the Forest
November 13
Tawai: A Voice from the Forest(2018)
Tawai is a word the nomadic hunter gatherers of Borneo use to describe the connection they feel to their forest home. In this dreamy, philosophical and sociological look at life, explorer Bruce Parry (of the BBC’s Tribe, Amazon & Arctic) embarks on an immersive odyssey to explore the different ways that humans relate to nature and how this influences the way we create our societies. From the forests of the Amazon and Borneo to the River Ganges and Isle of Skye, TAWAI is a quest for re-connection, providing a powerful voice from the heart of the forest itself.

The stunningly beautiful, thought-provoking odyssey TAWAI: A VOICE FROM THE FOREST is a mindful journey to see what the world’s indigenous people can teach us about our own survival and that of the plane.
"It's sincere, thought-provoking and gives you space to meditate on its message." Anna Smith, Time Out

Coldplay: A Head Full of Dreams
November 14
Coldplay: A Head Full of Dreams(2018)
One of the world’s biggest bands share their story, in their own words, for the first time. Charting Coldplay’s incredible journey from humble origins to stadium-filling superstardom, it is the definitive Coldplay film. Director Mat Whitecross showcases live performances and backstage footage from the momentous global stadium tour A Head Full of Dreams, alongside unprecedented and unseen archive material captured over 20 years. The film juxtaposes spectacular performances of iconic tracks like Fix You and Viva La Vida with intimate, behind-the-scenes moments that reveal the depth of the band’s friendship and brotherhood. A one-night-only global cinema event not to be missed.

Burn the Stage: The Movie
November 15
Burn the Stage: The Movie(2018)
Burn the Stage: the Movie is the first movie from BTS, going behind-the-scenes of the BTS WINGS TOUR to reveal the full story of the band’s meteoric rise to fame. This unmissable cinema event provides an intimate look at what happens when the most successful global boyband of all time breaks down barriers and invades the mainstream music scene. Exclusive tour footage and brand-new one-on-one interviews with BTS members give fans an unprecedented glimpse into their lives and an opportunity for everyone to celebrate together in movie theaters worldwide.

Oscar Wilde Season: The Importance of Being Earnes
November 17 & 21
Oscar Wilde Season: The Importance of Being Earnes(2018)
Wilde's much-loved masterpiece throws love, logic and language into the air to make one of theatre's most dazzling firework displays. Jack, Algy, Gwendolyn and Cecily discover how unsmooth runs the course of true love, while Lady Bracknell keeps a baleful eye on the mayhem of manners. This is the fourth and final play from the Oscar Wilde Season, a year-long celebration of the brilliant Victorian playwright being staged by the Classic Spring Theatre Company.

Royal Ballet: Mayerling, The
November 18
The Royal Ballet: Mayerling(2018)
Dangerous desires, family secrets and political intrigues twist through every moment of daring choreography in Kenneth MacMillan's ballet inspired by true events.
Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria-Hungary is emotionally unstable and haunted by his obsession with death. He is forced to marry Princess Stephanie. Soon afterwards his former lover Marie Larisch introduces him to a new mistress, Mary Vetsera, a young woman who shares his morbid fascination.

Weed the People
November 20
Weed the People(2018)
Cannabis has been off-limits to doctors and researchers in the US for the past 80 years, but recently scientists have discovered its anti-cancer properties. Armed with only these laboratory studies, desperate parents obtain cannabis oil from underground sources to save their children from
childhood cancers. “Weed the People” follows these families through uncharted waters as they take their children’s survival into their own hands. Some of their miraculous outcomes beget the unsettling question at the heart of the film: If weed is truly saving lives, why doesn’t the government want people
to access it?
"Weed the People is one part didactic, one part polemic, and one part human story. The documentary methodically alternates among these three, ultimately landing a compelling, if at times sentimental and anecdotal argument."-Natalia Winkelman, Film Threat

Wizard of Oz (1939), The
November 21 & 23 & 24
The Wizard of Oz (1939)(2018)
Routinely referenced on countless lists as one of the greatest things ever put to celluloid, THE WIZARD OF OZ isn't great because it was an achievement for its time--it's great because it is a wholly inescapable whirlwind of excellence. It's the movie kids beg to see over and over again and the film adults routinely need to revisit just to remind them just how magical a movie can be.

Dorothy is a young farm girl in rural Kansas living with her aunt and uncle. After a dust-up between Dorothy's trusty dog Toto and the evil Miss Gulch, the sheriff orders the canine be destroyed. Dorothy flees and, in her escape, finds herself caught up in a tornado that whisks her away to the mystical land of Oz, where music, munchkins, lions and tigers and bears (oh my!) await her.

You know the story. Now, follow your own Yellow Brick road and come live the magic this Thanksgiving holiday for a special big screen showing of THE WIZARD OF OZ.

Wildlife
November 23 & 24 & 25
Wildlife(2018)
14-year-old Joe is the only child of Jeanette and Jerry - a housewife and a golf pro - in a small town in 1960s Montana. Nearby, an uncontrolled forest fire rages close to the Canadian border, and when Jerry loses his job he decides to join the cause of fighting the fire, leaving his wife and son to fend for themselve

National Theatre Live: Allelujah!
November 24 & 28
National Theatre Live: Allelujah!(2018)
The Beth, an old fashioned cradle-to-grave hospital serving a town on the edge of the Pennines, is threatened with closure as part of an efficiency drive. A documentary crew, eager to capture its fight for survival, follows the daily struggle to find beds on the Dusty Springfield Geriatric Ward, and the triumphs of the old people’s choir.

Alan Bennett’s celebrated plays include The History Boys, The Lady in the Van and The Madness of George III, all of which were also seen on film. Allelujah! is his tenth collaboration with award-winning director Nicholas Hytner.
Filmed live at London’s Bridge Theatre during its limited run, don’t miss Alan Bennett's ‘rousing chorus line for the NHS’ (Observer) at the Liberty Theatre.

King and I (1956), The
November 25 & 26
The King and I (1956)(2018)
This visual and musical masterpiece features Yul Brynner's Academy Award-winning performance, an unforgettable Rodgers and Hammerstein score, and brilliant choreography by Jerome Robbins. It tells the true story of an Englishwoman, Anna Leonowens (Deborah Kerr), who comes to Siam as schoolteacher to the royal court in the 1860's. Though she soon finds herself at odds with the stubborn monarch (Brynner), over time, Anna and the King stop trying to change each other and begin to understand one another.

Horn from the Heart: The Paul Butterfield Story
November 26 & 27
Horn from the Heart: The Paul Butterfield Story(2018)
New York Times Critics Pick!
By Glenn Kenny
The blues, once the foundation of several dominating modes of American popular music, still informs what we hear in our homes and on our devices, but not as overtly as it used to. We don’t talk about blues artists that much today. Like jazz and folk, it is, in its ostensibly pure form, appreciated in small corners by enthusiasts.
I have to remind myself of these things whenever I hear an artist like Paul Butterfield, the blues singer and harmonica player who was prominent in the ’60s and ’70s. He died in 1987 at 44 of an accidental overdose. As one of the interview subjects in “Horn From the Heart: The Paul Butterfield Story” puts it, just three notes from Butterfield’s harp were enough to establish a groove, or vastly improve an existing one.

John Anderson, who directs this documentary, does a brisk job of explaining the milieu in which Butterfield learned his craft. As a youngster in Chicago he took classical flute lessons but was drawn to the city’s blues clubs. Butterfield answered the question, “Can a white man play the blues?” not just with his own excellence but with his dedication to racial equality as a bandleader. “I’m not bragging but I didn’t see nobody else who was better,” says Sam Lay, one of the earliest African-American drummers for the first Butterfield Blues Band. “And we happened to be black and white.”
In terms of production values, this is not a snazzy film. But the interview footage with family and colleagues, including Bonnie Raitt and Elvin Bishop, an early Butterfield guitarist, is smart and thorough. While the last third of Butterfield’s life is tragic, spending the better part of 90 minutes with the man and his music is exhilarating. The picture may get at least a few people talking about him again.
Also see "The Last Waltz" (1978) featuring Paul Butterfield and an amazing cast of rockers. The 40th anniversary presentation Nov. 30 & Dec. 1

Mercy, The
November 29
The Mercy(2018)
Following his Academy Award® winning film ‘The Theory of Everything,’ James Marsh directs the incredible true story of Donald Crowhurst (Colin Firth, The King's Speech, Kingsman: The Secret Service, The Railway Man), an amateur sailor who competed in the 1968 Sunday Times Golden Globe Race in the hope of becoming the first person in history to single-handedly circumnavigate the globe without stopping. With an unfinished boat and his business and house on the line, Donald leaves his wife, Clare (Rachel Weisz, The Light Between Oceans, The Lobster) and their children behind, hesitantly embarking on an adventure on his boat the Teignmouth Electron.

Last Waltz, The
November 30
The Last Waltz(2018)
This is the 40th anniversary of the films release.
It started as a concert. It became a celebration. Join an unparalleled lineup of rock superstars asthey celebrate The Band's historic 1976 farewell performance. Directed by Martin Scorsese, THE LAST WALTZ is the most beautiful rock film ever made.

Filmed over the Thanksgiving weekend in 1976 and released almost two years later, the documentary captures the final concert by The Band, the group that rose to prominence backing up Bob Dylan in the late 1960s and went on to score a string of hits of their own. By 1976, however, the quartet had been on the road for 16 years and, as Scorsese tells us through brief but insightful interview segments, the rock 'n roll lifestyle had taken its toll. "The numbers start to scare you," sleepy-eyed frontman Robbie Robertson tells Scorsese. "I mean I couldn't live with 20 years on the road. I don't think I could discuss it." THE LAST WALTZ, staged at San Francisco's Winterland hall, was a star-studded love letter not only to The Band, but also to a style of music that was rapidly disappearing in the second half of the 1970s.

The luscious, luminous look of THE LAST WALTZ is no accident. Rather than simply setting up a few cameras to record the moment, Scorsese actually scripted and storyboarded the film, transforming the Winterland into a makeshift soundstage and planning out the sequences as precisely as he did the musical numbers in "New York, New York," which he was in the process of completing at the time. Remarkably, the performances show no signs of being reined in or rehearsed. In fact, as Scorsese's cameras swirl around the musicians, all we see is joy and high spirits. Although Robertson and the rest of The Band are mostly low-key in their interviews, they spring to life onstage. There's palpable passion in drummer Levon Helm's singing on "Dixie" and "Ophelia," and in the playing of bassist Rick Danko and multi-instrumentalist Garth Hudson. Robertson spends much of the concert with an astonished smile on his face, as if he can't believe he's at the center of this celebration.

Elliot the Littlest Reindeer
December 1
Elliot the Littlest Reindeer(2018)
When one of Santa’s reindeer suddenly announces his retirement, he needs to find a replacement and fast! Against all odds, Elliot and his best friend Hazel set out to prove that he is the horse for the job. As Elliot and Hazel take on the North Pole reindeer try-outs, Hazel learns that Christmas as we know it may be headed for disaster. Meanwhile, back at the farm a potential new owner has plans that threaten the lives of their friends. Elliot is faced with the biggest decision of his life: save his friends or follow his dreams and save Christmas. Maybe he doesn’t have to choose; after all, big dreamers dream big! Featuring the all-star voice talent of Josh Hutcherson, Samantha Bee, Martin Short, Morena Baccarin, Jeff Dunham and John Cleese.

Royal Opera House: Die Walküre, The
December 2
The Royal Opera House: Die Walküre(2018)
Antonio Pappano conducts a great cast including Stuart Skelton, Emily Magee, John Lundgren and Nina Stemme in the second opera in Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen.
Wotan craves the ring, but, bound by his own laws, he can’t retrieve it himself. With a mortal woman he has twins, Siegmund and Sieglinde. He hopes Siegmund will become the free agent he needs to take the ring. Separated at birth, the twins meet as adults and fall in love.
Die Walküre is the second work and ‘first evening’ of Richard Wagner’s four-opera cycle Der Ring des Nibelungen, following Das Rheingold. It has become the most performed opera of the cycle, loved and admired for its nuanced and intelligent exploration of complex family entanglements, expressed through music of astonishing power – perhaps nowhere more so than in the glorious music for the incestuous lovers Siegmund and Sieglinde.

Wotan’s voyage of self-discovery and ultimate resignation are at the heart of Keith Warner’s production, created for The Royal Opera in 2005. His great Act II monologue is set in a disastrous ruin of the Valhalla we saw in Das Rheingold – a striking representation of Wotan’s own inner decline and the gods’ incipient twilight. Visual motifs reflect the structure of Wagner’s score, which shows the composer at his most radical and most lyrical.

Liyana
December 4
Liyana(2018)
Under the guidance of acclaimed South African storyteller, Gcina Mhlophe, five orphaned children from Swaziland collaborate to craft a collective fairytale drawn from their darkest memories and brightest dreams. Their fictional character, Liyana, is brought to life in innovative animated artwork as she embarks on a perilous quest to rescue her young twin brothers. The children’s real and imagined worlds begin to converge, and they must choose what kind of story they will tell - in fiction and in their own lives.

This genre-defying film weaves an original animated hero's journey with poetic documentary scenes to create an inspiring tale of perseverance. LIYANA is a tribute to creativity, the strength of the human spirit, and the healing power storytelling.

Critically acclaimed, and executive produced by award-winning actress, Thandie Newton, LIYANA has won more than 25 jury and audience awards and screened at more than 80 film festivals around the world including the British Film Institute’s London Film Festival and MoMA’s Doc Fortnight.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre: The Winter's Tale
December 5
Shakespeare's Globe Theatre: The Winter's Tale(2018)
The Winter’s Tale is Shakespeare’s great play of the irrational and inexplicable, illustrating how uncontrollable emotions can range across gender, country, class and age. Its universe is full of monsters, gods and natural disasters with a colossal sweep that takes audiences from the stifling atmosphere of the Sicilian court to the unbuttoned joy of a Bohemian festival.

Staged at the beautiful and iconic Globe Theatre in London, this new production will be directed by Blanche McIntyre, who is returning to the Globe having previously directed The Comedy of Errors in 2014 and As You Like It in 2015. Winner of the 2011 Critics’ Circle Most Promising Newcomer Award, she has most recently directed The Norman Conquests at Chichester Festival Theatre and has also worked at the Donmar Warehouse, Nottingham Playhouse and the RSC. The play stars Will Keen (The Crown, Wolf Hall) as Leontes, Priyanga Burford (W1A, Marcella) as Hermione and Annette Badland (EastEnders, Father Brown) as Old Shepherd.

Christmas Story, A
December 7 & 8 & 9
A Christmas Story(2018)
This year we are pleased to present as our special Hometown Holidays attraction the 1983 Christmas classic A CHRISTMAS STORY.
"You'll shoot your eye out!"

Even after decades of A CHRISTMAS STORY running on TV pretty much 24/7 for two weeks leading up to Christmas, there's something so magical about this film that we always catch ourselves watching it until the end every time we click past it while channel surfing. But as much fun as it can be to watch this holiday treat on the ol' boob tube, nothing can compare to seeing it projected up on the big screen while being surround by dozens of other fans as awesome as you who all understand how incredibly dangerous it can be to stick your tongue on a metal pole in the winter.

We'll be handing out themed props to use during the show and we'll also get this screening started with a special "You'll Shoot MY Eye Out" game that lets audience members come up to the front of the theater and try to shoot at our poor defenseless host for the night right in his eye! It's okay, though, we'll be using Nerf guns instead of Red Ryder's, so it will only hurt a lot but won't blind anyone.

So wash your mouth out with soap, drink plenty of Ovaltine, and stop by a Chinese restaurant because that's the only other place that will be open, then come on down for a special Movie Party screening of Ralphie's greatest year of Christmas ever!

National Theatre Live: The Madness of George III
December 8 & 12
National Theatre Live: The Madness of George III(2018)
Multi-award-winning drama The Madness of George III will be show in cinemas. National Theatre Live’s first ever broadcast from Nottingham Playhouse.

Written by one of Britain’s best-loved playwrights Alan Bennett (The History Boys, The Lady in the Van), this epic play was also adapted into a BAFTA Award-winning film following its premiere on stage in 1991.

The cast of this new production includes Olivier Award-winners Mark Gatiss (Sherlock, Wolf Hall, NT Live Coriolanus) in the title role, and Adrian Scarborough (Gavin and Stacey, Upstairs Downstairs, After the Dance).

It’s 1786 and King George III is the most powerful man in the world. But his behaviour is becoming increasingly erratic as he succumbs to fits of lunacy. With the King’s mind unravelling at a dramatic pace, ambitious politicians and the scheming Prince of Wales threaten to undermine the power of the Crown, and expose the fine line between a King and a man.

Bolshoi Ballet: La Sylphide
December 9
Bolshoi Ballet: La Sylphide(2018)
Staged for the Bolshoi by Bournonville expert Johan Kobborg, La Sylphide is the ultimate romantic masterpiece. Captured live from the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow, La Sylphide comes to cinemas across the U.S. on Sunday, Nov. 11 only. On his wedding day, the young Scotsman James is awakened with a kiss from an ethereal winged creature, a Sylph. Entranced by her beauty, James risks everything to pursue an unattainable love. La Sylphide is one of the world's oldest surviving ballets, and a treasure in Danish ballet master August Bournonville's style.


Royal Shakespeare Company : Troilus and Cressida
December 15 & 19
Royal Shakespeare Company : Troilus and Cressida(2018)
Troilus and Cressida swear they will always be true to one another. But in the seventh year of the siege of Troy their innocence is tested, and exposed to the savage corrupting influence of war, with tragic consequences.

Shop Around the Corner (1940), The
December 15
The Shop Around the Corner (1940)(2018)
The Liberty is teaming up again with Camas Antiques to bring you another wonderful holiday classic on the big screen.
"The Shop Around the Corner" (1940) is One of Ernst Lubitsch's most charming and romantic films, this 1940 comic romance finds James Stewart (Vertigo, It's A Wonderful Life) working in a small shop in Budapest and longing for a girl to call his own.

He unwittingly falls in love with his coworker—played to perfection by Margaret Sullavan—as pen pals, but the only problem: they can't stand each other in person. The beguiling nature of the mistaken identity formula that influenced countless films is done to perfection here, and the wry combativeness and delightful banter between the two leads makes this a very special film.

Sound of Music, The
December 16 & 17
The Sound of Music(2018)
Rodgers & Hammerstein's cinematic treasure, "The Sound of Music" is the winner of five Academy Awards, including Best Picture. In this true-life story, Julie Andrews lights up the screen as Maria, a spirited young Austrian woman who leaves the convent to become a governess for Captain von Trapp's (Christopher Plummer) seven unruly children. Her charm and songs soon win the hearts of the children - and their father. But when Nazi Germany unites with Austria, Maria is forced to attempt a daring escape with her new family.

Royal Ballet: La Bayadere, The
December 16
The Royal Ballet: La Bayadere(2018)
Natalia Makarova's production of this 19th-century classic ballet brings an exotic world of temple dancers and noble warriors to life.
Nikiya, a temple dancer, is in love with the warrior Solor. The High Brahmin pursues Nikiya, and when she rejects him, he plans to take revenge on Solor.
An iconic 19th-century Russian ballet, La Bayadère was originally performed at the Bolshoi Theatre in St Petersburg in 1877, and was regularly performed within the former Soviet Union throughout the 20th century. It remained unknown in the West until the Kirov Ballet toured with the Kingdom of the Shades scene in 1961. Natalia Makarova saw La Bayadère as a child in Leningrad and created this production in 1980. It was first performed by The Royal Ballet in 1989.

The Kingdom of the Shades scene in Act III is one of the ballet's highlights, in which a series of arabesques across the moonlit stage demonstrates the strength of the corps de ballet and the beauty of Marius Petipa's choreography. The ballet also contains roles of very different styles for two ballerinas in Nikiya and Gamzatti, a spectacular virtuoso solo for the Bronze Idol, and stunning pas de deux for Solor with both Nikiya and Gamzatti.

Royal Ballet: The Nutcracker, The
December 22
The Royal Ballet: The Nutcracker(2018)
It is Christmas Eve and Drosselmeyer the magician sweeps young Clara away on a fantasy adventure in which time is suspended, the family living room becomes a great battlefield, and a magical journey takes them through the Land of Snow to the Kingdom of Sweets.

Bolshoi Ballet: Don Quixote
December 30
Bolshoi Ballet: Don Quixote(2018)
Don Quixote and his servant Sancho Panza set out to have a chivalrous adventure. They meet Kitri and Basilio, a young couple who cannot marry because Kitri's father is determined to marry her off to the wealthy Gamache. Don Quixote decides to intervene.
Don Quixote is one of Marius Petipa's much-loved 19th-century classics - its story is drawn from Miguel de Cervantes's classic novel and set to Ludwig Minkus's score. The ballet has long been acclaimed for its virtuoso dancing, beautiful and technically demanding 'vision scene' and the famously bravura and breath-taking Act III pas de deux.

Carlos Acosta's production was created for The Royal Ballet in 2013, and brings the sunshine of Spain and the exuberance of the entire Company to the stage. Acosta created new choreography for the gypsy scene in Act II, and uniquely for this production of Don Quixote added on-stage musicians. Warmth, charm and entertainment abound in this energetic and witty ballet, reflected too in the characterful backdrops of Tim Hatley's vibrant designs.

National Theatre Live: Antony & Cleopatra
January 5 & 9
National Theatre Live: Antony & Cleopatra(2019)
Captured live at the National Theatre, Ralph Fiennes and Sophie Okonedo play Shakespeare’s famous fated couple in his great tragedy of politics, passion and power.

Caesar and his assassins are dead. General Mark Antony now rules alongside his fellow defenders of Rome. But at the fringes of a war-torn empire the Egyptian Queen Cleopatra and Mark Antony have fallen fiercely in love. In a tragic fight between devotion and duty, obsession becomes a catalyst for war.

Director Simon Godwin returns to National Theatre Live screens with this hotly anticipated production, following previous broadcasts of Twelfth Night, Man and Superman and The Beaux’ Stratagem.

Exhibition on Screen: Young Picasso
February 10 & 13
Exhibition on Screen: Young Picasso(2019)
Pablo Picasso is one of the greatest artists of all time - and right up until his death in 1973 he was the most prolific of artists. Many films have dealt with these later years - the art, the affairs and the wide circle of friends. But where did this all begin? What made Picasso in the first place? Too long ignored, it is time to look at the early years of Picasso; the upbringing and the learning that led to his extraordinary achievements.

Three cities play a key role: Malaga, Barcelona and Paris. Young Picasso visits each and explores their influence on Picasso, focusing on specific artworks from these early years. The film thus explains how this young artist acquired his craft. Looking carefully at two key early periods - the so-called Blue Period and Rose Period - the film takes us all the way to 1907 and the creation of a critical painting in the history of art - Les Demoiselles d'Avignon. It was a painting that shocked the art world but changed it irrevocably. Picasso was only 25 years old. Working closely with all three Picasso Museums in Malaga, Barcelona and Paris this film explains how he rose to such great heights.

National Theatre Live: I'm Not Running
February 16 & 20
National Theatre Live: I'm Not Running(2019)
I’m Not Running is an explosive new play by David Hare, premiering at the National Theatre and broadcast live to cinemas.

Pauline Gibson has spent her life as a doctor, the inspiring leader of a local health campaign. When she crosses paths with her old boyfriend, a stalwart loyalist in Labour Party politics, she’s faced with an agonising decision.

What’s involved in sacrificing your private life and your piece of mind for something more than a single issue? Does she dare?

Hare was recently described by The Washington Post as ‘the premiere political dramatist writing in English’. His other work includes Pravda and Skylight, broadcast by National Theatre Live in 2014.

Bolshoi Ballet: La Bayadere
February 17
Bolshoi Ballet: La Bayadere(2019)
Illuminating the tragic tale of the temple dancer Nikiya's doomed love for the warrior Solor and their ultimate redemption, the must-see theatrical event La Bayadere comes to cinemas across the U.S. on Sunday, Jan. 20 only, captured live the same day from the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow.

Royal Opera House: The Queen of Spades, The
February 24
The Royal Opera House: The Queen of Spades(2019)
Tchaikovsky's most ambitious opera receives star treatment in Stefan Herheim's staging, with a cast including Eva-Maria Westbroek, Felicity Palmer and Aleksandrs Antonenko.
The penniless soldier Gherman has fallen in love with Liza, even though she is engaged to his friend Yeletsky. Gherman learns that Liza's guardian the Countess knows a winning three-card formula. Gherman determines to wrest the secret from the Countess, gain a fortune through gambling and marry Liza.
Tchaikovsky began work on The Queen of Spades in 1889. He based it on a short story by Alexander Pushkin, one of his favourite writers. He and his brother Modest (his co-librettist) dramatically altered Pushkin's plot, turning Gherman from a cynical opportunist into an ardent lover and Liza into a tragic figure. Tchaikovsky put a great deal of work into the opera's premiere at St Petersburg's Mariinsky Theatre in 1890, and was thrilled by its success.

The Queen of Spades is one of Tchaikovsky's most impressive and varied scores, containing grand choruses, intimate arias and duets (such as Liza and Gherman's passionate Act I love duet), a masquerade paying tribute to Mozart and a terrifying supernatural episode. Stefan Herheim's spectacular production places Tchaikovsky himself at the heart of the action, and asks searching questions about the nature of creativity and the parallels between life and art.

Royal Opera House: La Traviata, The
March 3
The Royal Opera House: La Traviata(2019)
Richard Eyre's stunning production of Verdi's best-loved opera returns with star sopranos Ermonela Jaho and Angel Blue as Violetta; the casts also include Plácido Domingo and Charles Castronovo.
Alfredo Germont and the courtesan Violetta Valéry fall in love at a party in Violetta's Paris salon. Alfredo is determined to cure Violetta of her tuberculosis, and the couple leave Paris and begin a contented life in the country. But Violetta's happiness is destroyed when Alfredo's father Giorgio Germont pays her a visit.
Verdi based La traviata on Alexandre Dumas fils's novel and play La Dame aux camélias, inspired by the life and death of the real Parisian courtesan Marie Duplessis. Verdi offered a more complex and sympathetic portrayal of his heroine than Dumas, highlighting Violetta's noble nature and her devotion to Alfredo. La traviata had an initially lukewarm reception, but after Verdi revised the work in 1854 it became enormously successful. It is currently the most performed opera in the world, and the role of Violetta a favourite for many star sopranos.

Richard Eyre's stunning naturalistic production contrasts the superficial glamour of 19th-century Parisian high life with intimate scenes for Violetta with Alfredo and Giorgio Germont, culminating in the heart-breaking final act. Verdi's sublime score contains some of his most inspired arias and duets, including Violetta's introspective 'Ah fors'è lui' and hedonistic 'Sempre libera', Violetta and Germont's poignant Act II encounter and Alfredo and Violetta's 'Parigi, o cara', in which they dream of a happy future.

Bolshoi Ballet: The Sleeping Beauty
March 10
Bolshoi Ballet: The Sleeping Beauty(2019)
A resplendent fairytale ballet perfomed by the Bolshoi, The Sleeping Beauty features scores of magical characters including fairies, the Little Red Riding Hood, Puss in Boots, and a beautiful young Princess Aurora performed by Olga Smirnova, a “truly extraordinary talent” (The Telegraph). This is classical ballet at its finest.
The Princess Aurora falls under the curse of the Evil Fairy Carabosse on her sixtenth birthday, falling into a deep slumber of one hundred years. Only the kiss of a prince could break the spell.

Royal Opera House: Don Quixote, The
March 17
The Royal Opera House: Don Quixote(2019)
Love and friendship triumph in Carlos Acosta's vibrant production of this dazzling ballet.
Don Quixote is one of Marius Petipa's much-loved 19th-century classics - its story is drawn from Miguel de Cervantes's classic novel and set to Ludwig Minkus's score. The ballet has long been acclaimed for its virtuoso dancing, beautiful and technically demanding 'vision scene' and the famously bravura and breath-taking Act III pas de deux.

Carlos Acosta's production was created for The Royal Ballet in 2013, and brings the sunshine of Spain and the exuberance of the entire Company to the stage. Acosta created new choreography for the gypsy scene in Act II, and uniquely for this production of Don Quixote added on-stage musicians. Warmth, charm and entertainment abound in this energetic and witty ballet, reflected too in the characterful backdrops of Tim Hatley's vibrant designs.

Bolshoi Ballet: The Golden Age
April 7
Bolshoi Ballet: The Golden Age(2019)
With its jazzy score by Shostakovich and its music-hall atmosphere featuring beautiful tangos, The Golden Age is a refreshing and colorful dive into the roaring 20’s. A historic ballet that can be seen only at the Bolshoi!
In the 1920’s, The Golden Age cabaret is a favorite nightly haunt. The young fisherman Boris falls in love with Rita. He follows her to the cabaret and realizes that she is the beautiful dancer “Mademoiselle Margot,” but also the love interest of the local gangster Yashka…

Royal Opera House: La forza del destino, The
April 28
The Royal Opera House: La forza del destino(2019)
Christof Loy directs a star-studded cast of singers, including Anna Netrebko, Jonas Kaufmann and Christopher Maltman, in Verdi's epic opera, conducted by Antonio Pappano.
The Marquis of Calatrava forbids his daughter Leonora to marry the South American nobleman Don Alvaro. The lovers attempt to elope, but the Marquis catches them. In the ensuing altercation, Alvaro accidentally kills the Marquis, who curses his daughter as he dies. Leonora and Alvaro become separated during their escape. Leonora's brother Don Carlo di Vargas decides to find them and avenge his father.
La forza del destino is one of Verdi's most ambitious scores. Its overture - which introduces us to the sinister motif signifying Fate - is one of his most memorable. The opera also contains some of Verdi’s most brilliant choral writing, including Act III’s stirring ‘Rataplan’ chorus, and several beautiful and intimate arias such as Leonora's ardent Act IV 'Pace, pace mio Dio!'. There's comedy too with the scenes for the greedy monk Fra Melitone. Christof Loy's colourful and spectacular production reflects the kaleidoscopic nature of Verdi's opera, where intense personal dramas play out against a background of war, and in which religion plays an ambiguous role.

Verdi and his librettist and friend Francesco Maria Piave based La forza del destino on Ángel de Saavedra's highly dramatic play Don Alvaro, o la fuerzo del sino, and also incorporated material from Schiller's Wallenstein's Camp for Act III's military scenes. Following Forza's 1862 St Petersburg premiere, Verdi made extensive revisions to the score. The most substantial of these were a new overture, and a less melodramatic ending, in which Don Alvaro remained alive rather than committing suicide. The revised Forza, the version best known today, had its premiere on 27 February 1869 at La Scala, Milan.

Royal Opera House: Faust, The
June 2
The Royal Opera House: Faust(2019)
Gounod's most popular opera returns in David McVicar's stunning Parisian production, with singers including Michael Fabiano, Diana Damrau and Erwin Schrott.
Disillusioned with life, the aged philosopher Faust calls upon Satan to help him. The devil Méphistophélès appears and strikes a bargain with the philosopher: he will give him youth and the love of the beautiful Marguerite, if Faust will hand over his soul. Faust agrees, and Méphistophélès arranges matters so that Marguerite loses interest in her suitor Siébel and becomes infatuated with Faust.
Gounod's Faust (1859) was one of the world's most popular operas from the 1860s to World War II, and remains a core repertory work. The story, adapted by Gounod's librettists Jules Barbier and Michel Carré from Carré's play Faust et Marguerite, is based on Part I of Goethe's epic poem Faust, which was a major inspiration for many composers during the 19th century and beyond. Gounod added a ballet to Act V when Faust received its first Paris Opéra staging in 1869.

David McVicar's wonderfully theatrical production draws insightful parallels between Faust and Gounod, a composer torn between piety and worldly and romantic success. Sets and costumes by Charles Edwards and Brigitte Reiffenstuel pay tribute to the art and architecture of 1870s Paris, and include a colourful Cabaret d'Enfer, a run-down tenement block and re-creations of a box from the Paris Opéra and the organ loft of Notre-Dame. The variety of settings mirrors the variety in Gounod's score, highlights of which include Méphistophélès's demonic aria 'Le veau d'or', Marguerite's dazzling coloratura Jewel Song, the Act IV Soldiers' Chorus and Act V's impassioned trio as Marguerite struggles to achieve salvation.

Exhibition on Screen: Van Gogh & Japan
June 9 & 12
Exhibition on Screen: Van Gogh & Japan(2019)
"I envy the Japanese" Van Gogh wrote to his brother Theo. In the exhibition on which this film is based - VAN GOGH & JAPAN at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam - one can see why. Though Vincent van Gogh never visited Japan it is the country that had the most profound influence on him and his art. One cannot understand Van Gogh without understanding how Japanese art arrived in Paris in the middle of the 19th century and the profound impact it had on artists like Monet, Degas and, above all, Van Gogh.

Visiting the new galleries of Japanese art in Paris and then creating his own image of Japan - through in-depth research, print collecting and detailed discussions with other artists - Van Gogh's encounter with Japanese artworks gave his work a new and exciting direction. After leaving Paris for the south of France - to what he thought of as near to a kind of Japan as he could find - the productive and yet troubled years that followed must all be seen in the context of Van Gogh bending Japanese influences to his will and defining himself as a modern artist with clear Asian precursors. In this overlooked story of Van Gogh's art we see just how important his study of Japan was.

The film travels not only to France and the Netherlands but also to Japan to further explore the remarkable heritage that so affected Van Gogh and made him the artist we know of today.

Royal Ballet: Triple Bill, The
June 23
The Royal Ballet: Triple Bill(2019)
Within the Golden Hour / New Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui / Flight Pattern

The contemporary face of The Royal Ballet is shown in works from three of today's leading choreographers. Wheeldon's Within the Golden Hour is based around seven couples separating and intermingling, to music by Vivaldi and Bossi and lit with rich colours suggested by sunset. Pite's Flight Pattern, revived for the first time, uses Górecki's familiar music and a large dance ensemble for a poignant and passionate reflection on migration. Between them, a new work created on The Royal Ballet by the acclaimed choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui has its premiere to bring the contemporary truly up-to-date.

Royal Ballet: Romeo and Juliet, The
July 14
The Royal Ballet: Romeo and Juliet(2019)
Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers encounter passion and tragedy in Kenneth MacMillan's 20th-century ballet masterpiece.
Romeo and Juliet fall passionately in love, but their families are caught up in a deadly feud. They marry in secret, but tragic circumstances lead Romeo to fight and kill Juliet's cousin Tybalt. As punishment, he is banished from the city.
Kenneth MacMillan's passionate choreography for Romeo and Juliet shows The Royal Ballet at its dramatic finest. Sergey Prokofiev's iconic score provides the basis for the ballet's romantic pas de deux and vibrant crowd scenes, while 16th-century Verona is created by Nicholas Georgiadis's magnificent designs.

In 1965, MacMillan's Romeo and Juliet was given its premiere at Covent Garden by The Royal Ballet and was an immediate success: the first night was met with rapturous applause, which lasted for 40 minutes, and an incredible 43 curtain calls. The title roles were danced by Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn, although the ballet had been created on Christopher Gable and Lynn Seymour. It has been performed by The Royal Ballet more than four hundred times since, as well as touring the world, and has become a true classic of the 20th-century ballet repertory.