National Theatre Live opens second season at Fairfield University's Quick Center for the Arts with encore of Phedre starring Helen Mirren September 23

Image: PhedreNational Theatre Live, a groundbreaking initiative to broadcast the best of British theatre to cinemas around the world, begins its second season with an encore broadcast of the acclaimed production of Jean Racine's Phèdre starring Helen Mirren at Fairfield University's Quick Center for the Arts for one performance only on Thursday, Sept. 23 at 7 p.m. The first season of events began in June 2009 with Phèdre and was seen by over 165,000 people on 320 screens in 22 countries. This presentation is part of the Arts & Minds season.

"We couldn't have foreseen that the experimental National Theatre Live season would be such a hit with audiences around the world, who are hungry to see our work in their local cinema," says Nicholas Hytner, Director of the National Theatre. "We're delighted that we can confidently build on its success with a second season of broadcasts."

This season's lineup includes two thrilling collaborations with other British theatre companies, Complicite and the Donmar Warehouse. On Thursday, Oct. 14 at 2 p.m., the multi-award-winning play, A Disappearing Number, conceived and directed by Simon McBurney, will be broadcast live. Encore broadcast is Saturday, Oct. 16 at 2 p.m. And Shakespeare's King Lear, starring Derek Jacobi and directed by the Donmar Warehouse's artistic director Michael Grandage, will be broadcast live on Thursday, Feb. 3 at 2 p.m.; Encore is Friday, Feb. 11 at 7 p.m.

In addition to the two collaborations, the National Theatre Live's second season includes live broadcasts with encore presentations of the following:

  • Shakespeare's Hamlet, starring Rory Kinnear live on Thursday, Dec. 9 at 2 p.m.; Encore, Thursday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m.
  • Fela! - Broadway's Tony® Award winning musical with Sahr Ngaujah as Fela Anikulpao-Kuti, Thursday, Jan. 13 at 2 p.m.; Encore, Saturday, Jan. 15 at 2 p.m.
  • Danny Boyle's production of Frankenstein (contains themes of an adult nature), Thursday, March 17 at 2 p.m.; Encore, Friday, March 18 at 7 p.m.
  • Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard, starring Zoë Wanamaker as Madame Ranevskaya, directed by the National's associate director Howard Davies, Thursday, June 30 at 2 p.m.; Encore, Thursday, June 30 at 7 p.m.

Press for the National Theatre Live's HD series has been overwhelmingly positive. The Los Angeles Times called the first season "A smashing success" and London's Daily Telegraph applauded by saying, "If you haven't experienced NT Live yet, I can't recommend it too highly."

Tickets are $22 general, $20 seniors, $15 children and students and are available at or by calling the Box Office at (203) 254-4010. The toll free number is 1-877-ARTS-396. Special offers and discounts are available through the Quick Center's e-mail list. Join, by contacting And become a fan of the Quick Center for the Arts on Facebook! Keep up-to-date with the latest performance news, plus special offers and discounts! Find the Quick Center at

National Theatre Live is distributed internationally (ex-UK) by New York-based BY Experience: Global sponsor for National Theatre Live is Aviva, an innovative insurance company with a global presence.

Directions: Fairfield University is located off I-95, exit 22 at 1073 North Benson Road, Fairfield, CT 06824. Access to the Quick Center for the Arts is through the Barlow Road gate at 200 Barlow Road.

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Media Contact: Joan Grant, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950,

Posted on September 1, 2010

Vol. 43, No. 30

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