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Globe on Screen launches in China

Theatre news

SHAKESPEARE’S Globe has announced the launch of Globe on Screen in China, in collaboration with ATW Culture.

On September 24, 2017, Globe on Screen launched with a screening of the smash-hit 2012 production of Twelfth Night, starring Mark Rylance, at the Inside Out venue, West Beijing.

The Globe has been making films of its productions since 2003; this launch marks the first time that they will be screening in China, cementing the presence of Shakespearean productions from the UK across TV screens, in cinemas and on the biggest online VOD platform.

ATW Culture is the leading distributor of filmed theatrical content in China.

The Globe on Screen films will be released in cinemas in eight of the major cities, including Beijing and Shanghai. They will also enjoy an online release with China’s biggest online platform for video content, iQiyi, which has over 200 million subscribers. iQiyi live streamed the launch event on September 24.

As part of the launch, the 2015 production of The Merchant of Venice, starring Jonathan Pryce, was broadcast on Tianjin TV, having enjoyed a hugely successful tour in China in 2016.

Karen Bradley MP, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said: “This project shows how our world-leading cultural institutions can use digital technologies to reach new audiences across the world. The Globe is helping more people experience and understand the work of Shakespeare and it is a wonderful example of how our culture sector continues to shine on the international stage.”

Neil Constable, Chief Executive of Shakespeare’s Globe, said: “The launch of Globe on Screen in China celebrates and cements our commitment to sharing Shakespeare productions with our new and expanding Chinese audiences. We are particularly thrilled to be working with ATW Culture for this exciting new chapter, ensuring our productions can be seen by people across the world.

“From sending Globe productions and Globe Education teams to China, to inviting visiting companies to thrill our audiences on our stage, we are proud to be adding to the multitude of cultural activities supporting and celebrating the UK-China relationship.”

During the 2015 UK-China Year of Cultural Exchange, the Globe welcomed The National Theatre of China, performing Richard III in Mandarin and the Tang Shu-wing Theatre Studio from Hong Kong, performing Macbeth in Cantonese. Both companies performed on the Globe stage in 2012, when the Globe invited theatre companies from around the world to stage all 37 of Shakespeare’s works in 37 different languages for the Globe to Globe festival, part of the Cultural Olympiad. Since then, foreign companies have been invited back to the Globe to perform Shakespeare’s work in their own languages.

The Globe also took its unprecedented world tour of Hamlet to the Daguan Theatre in Shanghai, the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing and to the Lyric Theatre at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts in 2015.

Globe on Screen recently hosted its first ever live cinema broadcast with this season’s King Lear, starring Kevin McNally, on September 21, 2017. King Lear was screened live into more than 300 cinemas across the UK and Ireland, in collaboration with Cinema Live and followed by a cinema release in Australia, New Zealand and the US.