Theatre, ballet and opera... at Cineworld!

Ivan The Terrible

Ivan The Terrible

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There’s a big selection of entertainment coming up at Luton Cineworld in the next few weeks - on top of the usual selection of blockbuster movies.

It kicks off on Thursday, April 16 at 7pm with National Theatre Live: The Hard Problem.

Nicholas Hytner directs Tom Stoppard’s eagerly anticipated new play, which poses some big questions.

What is consciousness? That’s the question troubling Hilary, a young researcher at a brain science institute. After all, if everything is matter, the advance of technology means that the computer and MRI scanner will one day be able to answer all the questions currently addressed by psychology.

It’s this ‘hard problem’ that brings her into conflict with her colleagues. These include her first mentor Spike, her boss Leo and the institute’s billionaire founder, Jerry.

Stoppard’s first play since Rock’n’Roll is directed by Nicholas Hytner, whose recent NT triumphs include One Man, Two Guvnors and Othello.

Next to be beamed onto the cinema screen is Bolshoi Ballet: Ivan the Terrible.

Yuri Grigorovich’s dazzling ballet of intrigue and murder in 16th-century Russia is being shown on Saturday, April 19 (4pm).

Following his coronation as the Tsar of all the Russias, Ivan IV must choose one of the 13 Boyar daughters as Tsarina.

He selects Anastasia Romanovna, and their union proves to be a happy one. But as the Boyars continue to plot against him and eventually poison his beloved wife, Ivan sinks into madness.

Premiered in 1975, it’s a lyrical evocation of life in 16th century Russia, filled with vigour and grace. Hugely popular with western audiences, this impressive work in the true Bolshoi style has recently been revived to take its rightful place in the company’s modern repertoire.

On Saturday, April 25 (5.30pm) Cineworld will show Met Opera: Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci.

Sir David McVicar directs an evocative new production of this verismo double bill.

Often performed together, these two short Italian operas have not been staged by the Met for 45 years.

Scottish director Sir David McVicar’s imaginative new production of the great tragedies follows his triumphs with Giulio Cesare, Maria Stuarda and Il Trovatore.

War Horse designer Rae Smith uses the same Sicilian setting in two time frames. The 1900 village square of Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana is skillfully transformed into a 1948 truck stop for Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci.

Making his company role debut, Marcelo Alvarez takes on the challenge of both leading tenor parts: the unrepentant seducer Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana and Canio - the leader of the doomed vaudeville troupe - in Pagliacci.

Eva-Maria Westbroek (Cav) and Patricia Racette (Pag) sing the roles of abandoned Santuzza and Canio’s ill-fated wife Nedda respectively. Met Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi leads both operas.

More details at www.cineworld.co.uk