Fantastic Live Recordings and Where to Find Them: A Beginner’s Guide

We all have that list of productions that we wish we’d seen when they were playing – and another list of productions that we saw, and want to see again. Live recordings of theatre have become increasingly popular over the last few years, with iconic productions such as Miss Saigon being made available on DVD, but there are more recordings out there than you might realise. In this blog, I’ll be taking you through where exactly you can find them.

Amazon

You can find a whole host of live recordings on Amazon, which you can rent, or buy on DVD / Blu Ray. The great thing about Amazon is that it often provides a cheaper option than other sites. The not-so-great thing about Amazon is that it can be hard to find niche recordings.

Included in the list of recordings you can find on Amazon are: Miss Saigon 25th Anniversary Performance; Rent Filmed Live on Broadway; The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall; Hairspray Live; Billy Elliot The Musical Live; Gypsy The Musical Live; and Stomp Live.

You can also find a range of productions filmed at The Globe, by searching ‘Globe on Screen’.

RSC Shop and Globe Player

If you’re in the mood to see some live recordings of Shakespearean shows, then the RSC online shop and the Globe Player are the best places to start. Between them, they offer three separate recordings of different productions of Macbeth – and at least one recording of most other Shakespeare plays.

The RSC shop sells these recordings on DVD / Blu Ray; the Globe Player sells them as downloads. If you want to find the DVD / Blu Ray version of a Globe production, try looking on National Theatre‘s website, or Amazon (search ‘Globe on Screen’).

The only downside to these sites is that some of the recordings are on the more expensive end of the scale. Paying around £20 for a recording is fine if you particularly want to see certain productions – but perhaps not if you want to binge the whole lot.

Digital Theatre

Digital Theatre is a great place to go for more live recordings, many of which are exclusive to the site. The recordings (including theatre, opera, dance and classical music) can be bought or rented, and then watched through either the website itself or the Digital Theatre app.

Included in the repertoire of live recordings within Digital Theatre are: The Crucible; All My Sons; Far From the Madding Crowd and Into the Woods.

Most of these recordings are available to rent at around £4, or to buy for around £9, making them fairly affordable.

Cinema Screenings

A lot of live recordings are broadcast initially in cinemas for ‘One Night Only’. It is always worth checking what’s on at your local cinema; they might just be broadcasting something that you’ve been really wanting to see.

Seen Any Great Recordings?

Let me know, by tweeting @thespian_blog.

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