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By Stephen Heard
May 04, 2020
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Chekhov's The Seagull

The Russian dramatist's first major play gets the online treatment.
By Stephen Heard
May 04, 2020
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Auckland Theatre Company is set to prove that you don't need all the bells and whistles of a playhouse for a night at the theatre. Instead, the company is bringing Anton Chekhov's The Seagull from an 18th century Russian country estate to the online space.

The Russian dramatist's landmark piece will be delivered in 30-minute instalments over four weeks from Friday, 8 May. The new online retelling is the work of Eli Kent and Eleanor Bishop, who have reimagined Chekhov's famous characters as an extended Kiwi family congregating over Zoom.

The cast, which includes esteemed local thespians Jennifer Ward-Lealand, Fasitua Amosa and Bruce Phillips, will have just one week per episode to read the script, learn their lines and rehearse. The creative team envisioned the project as a snapshot of our current COVID-19 Alert Level, so if our situation changes, so too will the characters'.

The first episode of Chekhov's The Seagull will screen for free ​via Facebook Premiere and YouTube Premiere on Friday, 8 May at 7pm.

Image: ASB Waterfront Theatre.

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