Marquee TV has been called “the new Netflix for the arts” with its global streaming TV service for dance, opera and theatre. It has a pleasing interface and, more importantly, some great content collaborating with The Royal Opera House, English National Ballet, the Royal Shakespeare Company and many others.
As part of a collaborative response to the COVID-19 lockdown, since March they have streamed a virtual season of Saturday Premieres, with La Traviata from the ROH, Twelfth Night from the RSC and Akram Khan's Giselle with English National Ballet.
CEO and Co-Founder Simon Walker said,
This has been one of the most challenging periods in history for arts and culture, particularly the performing arts sector. I'm pleased that through Marquee TV we've been able to help ensure that audiences are still exposed to this vital content of our much-loved institutions, many of which we are working with to build a more sustainable future model, in both the physical and virtual worlds.
The Royal Ballet's Mayerling is the latest addition to the catalogue – it is the excellent 2018 recording of the live cinema relay with Steven McRae as Prince Rudolf and Sarah Lamb as Mary Vetsera. McRae excels in playing Kenneth MacMillan's tortured and perverse Crown Prince Rudolf, and Lamb matches him in both her dancing and her acting, with her eyes sparkling with dark thoughts.
A five-star review for the Financial Times said,
The no-holds-barred duets with Mary Vetsera were extraordinary, a spine-chilling portrayal of a couple bent on self-destruction. McRae's snarling Rudolf is nine parts psychopath — satyriasis, syphilis and a needle habit are hardly a recipe for peace of mind — but we are persuaded of his tragedy by these relentless couplings. Sarah Lamb subverts her own cut-glass technique, using her pliant spine and switchblade limbs to suggest a kind of filthy innocence: demure, delicious, deadly.
Saturday Premieres continue with Cendrillon from Glyndebourne (20 June) and Ibsen's Ghosts by the Norwegian National Ballet (27 June).
Marquee TV, during this time of ‘cultural quarantine', is offering arts lovers a 14-day free trial and 30% off the first year if signing up for an annual membership. For the full programme visit www.marquee.tv
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.