Maya Arad Yasur’s prize-winning play Amsterdam has been made available to watch online by London’s Orange Tree Theatre after its UK tour was cut short by the shutdown.
Directed by Matthew Xia, the co-production with Actors Touring Company and Theatre Royal Plymouth was filmed live at the Orange Tree last autumn. Amsterdam can be watched at orangetreetheatre.co.uk.
Amsterdam is a thriller about a pregnant Israeli violinist who receives a mysterious unpaid gas bill from 1944, awakening unsettling feelings of collective identity, foreignness and alienation. Stories of a devastating past are reconstructed to try to make sense of the present.
It stars Daniel Abelson, Fiston Barek, Michal Horowicz and Hara Yannas with design by Naomi Kuyck-Cohen, movement direction by Jennifer Jackson, lighting design by Ciarán Cunningham and sound design by Max Pappenheim. Translated into English by Eran Edry, it was originally staged in Hebrew at Haifa Theatre in Israel in 2018.
After the English-language premiere at the Orange Tree last September, the play embarked on a national tour in February with a run at the Theatre Royal Plymouth from 27 February to 14 March. It was scheduled to continue until May at Salisbury Playhouse, Glasgow’s Tron Theatre, Home in Manchester, Oxford’s North Wall, Warwick Arts Centre, Leeds Playhouse, The Rep in Birmingham and Northern Stage in Newcastle upon Tyne.
The live capture was commissioned by The Space, which helps artists and organisations make art and reach new audiences digitally, supported by Arts Council England and produced by the Roundhouse.
Over the coming weeks, the Orange Tree plans to release highlights from its archives, with articles about past productions to read, interviews and insights to watch, and podcasts to listen to. They will be available on its website and on its YouTube channel.
The theatre, in Richmond in south-west London, will also continue to be in regular contact with its community including its Youth Theatre and Young Company and Over-60s groups who will be making work collaboratively online. Additional content will be posted to the Orange Tree’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts.
The Orange Tree’s director, Paul Miller, said: “Shutting the doors of our building to all the many artists and audiences that we bring together as the heart of our mission was devastating. That we have so much rich material from our archive to offer online is a source of enormous comfort, and to be able to make the marvellous and innovative Amsterdam available to all, including the many people prevented from seeing it on tour, is a joy.
“All at the OT have been profoundly moved by the love shown us by our audiences recently, especially those many who have volunteered to return previously booked tickets as a donation. By donating to our Survival Fund you too can help ensure our return. And return we will. Keep safe and well, and we will have some great theatre experiences ready for you in the unique theatre space you all love once we emerge from this temporary hibernation.”ORANGE TREE WEBSITE