Two Love Affairs, a Century Apart in Filmed Live Broadcast of A Disappearing Number
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The last date listed for A Disappearing Number was Friday October 29, 2010 / 8:00pm.
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Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from charmonium5
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A simulcast production that made full use of the medium. Produced as commentary on two love affairs one paralleling the other but about a100 years apart, this tragic romance captures the nature of love at once romantic, filial and aesthetic. Ramanujen was a poor esthete from India who happened to be a "natural" mathematician, that is capable of intuitively seeing remote number theoretical relationships without formal proof. Transplanted to Cambridge, where he did not thrive, by GH Hardy the reigning professor of mathematics at the time; they together published some of Ramanujen's insights for which they could find proofs. Revealed in parallel, Ruth an admirer of the beauty of math and of Ramanujen's mysterious genius; an apparently obscure English lecturer on number theory and a quite unlikely distinctly non-mathematician soul mate find each other and embark on wedded life based on living life in truth and beauty in the face of life's trials and disappointments. The action unfolds in the form of physically dissolving vignettes, facilitated by wonderful fast moving stage craft and multimedia effects, alternating between modern times and the heyday of Cambridge. The cast were all professional actors of well honed ability, the role of Ruth the English math lecturer, played by [ ], was a stellar performance. As with Opera, these simulcasts provide an inexpensive way to afford top quality production in a mode not available even to those attending the actual performance [closeups, panned shots and zoomed panorama]. La Mirada Theatre is an excellent venue for such productions.
Quotes & Highlights
- “Quietly mesmerizing…lucid, dynamic and continuously engaging.” --<em>New York Times </em>
- “Technically dazzling and beautifully staged” --<em>New York Post </em>
- Read a <a target="_blank" href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/04/theater/04complicite.html?_r=2&ref=simon_mcburney"><em>New York Times</em> interview</a> with writer/director Simon McBurney.
A Disappearing Number opened in Plymouth in 2007 and has subsequently toured all over the world to New York, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Ann Arbor, Milan, Sydney, Barcelona and London. Prior to the National Theatre Live broadcast it will play a limited West End season. Awards include the Olivier Award for Best New Play (2008), the Evening Standard Theatre Award for Best Play (2007) and The Critics’ Circle Theatre Award for Best New Play (2007).
A Disappearing Number weaves together the story of two love affairs, separated by a century and a continent. The first happens now. The second is set in 1914. It tells of the heartbreaking collaboration between the greatest natural mathematician of the 20th century, Srinivasa Ramanujan, a penniless Brahmin from Madras in South India, and his British counterpart, the brilliant Cambridge don GH Hardy. With a haunting original score by Nitin Sawhney, this piece of startling visual poetry from Simon McBurney and Complicite is a compelling meditation on love, mathematics and the pain of exile in an age when we think we can belong anywhere and have everything.
A Disappearing Number is a Complicite co-production with the Barbican, London, Ruhrfestspiele, Wiener Festwochen, Holland Festival, in association with Theatre Royal Plymouth.
National Theatre Live performances are filmed live in high definition and broadcast via satellite to over 300 cinemas around the world, live in Europe and some US cities, and time-delayed in countries further afield. There are over 75 venues in the UK alongside venues in the USA, Canada, Australia, South Africa, Scandinavia and Europe. The performances at the National are nominated in advance to allow cameras greater freedom in the auditorium.
This screening heralds the second season of National Theatre LIve the NT’s groundbreaking initiative to broadcast live performances of plays to cinemas and performing arts venues around the world. The first season was seen by over 165,000 people on 320 screens in 22 countries.