Fancy Benedict Cumberbatch’s 'Frankenstein' or 'Sepet: The Musical' online this weekend?

  • Arts
  • Thursday, 30 Apr 2020

There’s plenty of online drama happening this weekend, and we mean the good kind of drama.

Many theatre companies, local and international, have been rolling out virtual shows to keep the masses occupied during these lockdown times. So that means there's a good spread to choose from: be it a classic horror story, a Singaporean play starring a Malaysian theatre veteran, or an arty theatre show surrounding the arrest - and disappearance - of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.

Here are five shows you can catch for free online this weekend:

National Theatre's monster hit Frankenstein

Enjoy not one, but two versions of this deeply disturbing gothic horror story by Mary Shelley this weekend.

You get a chance to watch both monster versions of Frankenstein directed by award-winning British director Danny Boyle in 2011. It features Jonny Lee Miller and Benedict Cumberbatch in alternating roles as The Creature and Victor Frankenstein.

Frankenstein, with Cumberbatch as the Creature and Miller as Victor Frankenstein, will stream on National Theatre’s Youtube channel, starting from 7pm, UK time, on April 30 (2am, May 1, Malaysian time).

Frankenstein, with Miller as the Creature and Cumberbatch as Victor Frankenstein, will stream from 7pm, UK time, on May 1 (2am, May 2, Malaysian time).

Love is in the air with Sepet: The Musical

This stage adaptation of Yasmin Ahmad’s film is the story of an innocence romance between a nineteen-year-old Chinese VCD-seller and a Malay school girl who loves John Woo films and everything Takeshi Kaneshiro.

As romance blossoms between them, social and racial pressures slowly surface as obstacles. This production by British-Malaysian theatre group Liver and Lung Productions played to sold out audiences in KL last September.

Sepet: The Musical stars Joshua Gui and Badrika Bahadur. Music is composed by Badrish Bahadur and Shafeeq Shajahan, who also directed the play. Choreography is by Hannah Shields and music direction by Wai Leong.

You can watch the Sepet: The Musical production here from 9pm on May 1.

Andrew Lloyd Webber's 50th birthday bash rewind

Over the past few weeks, The Shows Must Go On series has been featuring many beloved Andrew Lloyd Webber musicals, such as Jesus Christ Superstar, Joseph And The Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, The Phantom Of The Opera and Love Never Dies.

This week, it features a star-studded tribute to Andrew Lloyd Webber, which was filmed at the Royal Albert Hall in 1998 for Webber’s 50th birthday.

It features songs from many of his major musicals, including Cats, Sunset Boulevard, The Phantom Of The Opera, and Evita.

Performers include Elaine Paige, Glenn Close, Sarah Brightman, Tina Arena, Antonio Banderas, Donny Osmond, and Michael Ball. Andrew Lloyd Webber - The Royal Albert Hall Celebration starts here on May, 2am (Malaysian time).

Free streaming lasts 48 hours.

Catch Patrick Teoh in Wild Rice's Supervision

Grumpy retiree Teck - played by Malaysian actor Patrick Teoh - suffers a stroke and becomes wheelchair bound. His daughter Jenny hires a young Indonesian domestic worker Yanti to look after him.

At first, Yanti dutifully follows the caregiving regime set by Jenny. Teck, however, refuses to give up his favourite vices, and Yanti eventually obliges him. But Jenny always seems to know what’s going on.

This Singaporean play by Thomas Lim brings up timely questions such as: would you give up the things you enjoy in exchange for a few more years (to live)? Does working in someone else’s home mean giving up your right to privacy?

This production, directed by Glen Goei, also stars Janice Koh and Umi Kalthum Ismail. It was recorded at Wild Rice’s Ngee Ann Kongsi Theatre in Singapore in August last year.

Supervision will stream here for a week starting from 7.30pm on May 1. A live talkback session happens at 9pm on May 7.

A tale about Ai Weiwei's arrest and 'disappearance'

Originally performed and live streamed in 2013, this unique recording of #aiww: The Arrest Of Ai Weiwei returns as part of the Hampstead Theatre At Home series in Britain.

Howard Brenton's theatre production is about the detainment and interrogation of Chinese artist Ai Weiwei by the Chinese authorities in 2011.

The play, which is based on Ai Weiwei’s own account in Barnaby Martin’s book Hanging Man (first published March 2013), was directed by James Macdonald with Benedict Wong in the title role.

The play #aiww: The Arrest of Ai Weiwei is available to watch on demand here until May 3 (10pm, UK time), or May 4 (5am, Malaysian time).

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