The Emma Rice musical Romantics Anonymous, based on the film Les Émotifs Anonymes, will be performed at Bristol Old Vic and broadcast live globally as a "digital tour" between September 22 and 26. The broadcasts follow the cancellation of the musical's U.S. tour due to the ongoing pandemic.
Partner theatres across the world will sell tickets for different nights of the week. Each night will be tailored to audiences in different parts of the world; the production teases that a sprinkle of local flavor will be added before each stream begins.
The U.S. stream is set for September 26 at 4 PM ET with partner theatres The Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, Berkeley Rep, Shakespeare Theatre Company, Spoleto Festival, St. Ann's Warehouse, and Chicago Shakespeare Theater.
Romantics Anonymous, which has a book by Rice, lyrics by Christopher Dimond, and music by Michael Kooman, concerns Angélique, a gifted chocolate maker crippled by social anxiety, and Jean-René, the boss of a failing chocolate factory. Rice also directs.
Casting will be announced at a later date. Members of the company will each have a coronavirus test before forming a bubble in Bristol, with the show subsequently being performed without social distancing.
Rice says, “I have devoted my life to the live experience and the collective imagination—things that have proved impossible over the last few months. Whilst nothing will be able to replace the thrill of a night out at the theatre, this live broadcast is going to be as close to that delicious experience as we can possibly make it... We are taking the utmost care to protect all of our valued team and, for one week only, we can all experience a live performance again, get lost in a wonderful love story and remember what it was to be socially intimate.”
Wise Children, Bristol Old Vic, and Plush Theatricals produce. Tickets are available at WiseChildrenDigital.com.