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London’s Royal Ballet Comes to Oakland’s Grand Lake Theater

Lauren Cuthbertson and Federico Bonelli in the Royal Ballet production of Romeo & Juliet

Well, not exactly. But it is just this sort of headline that Ballet in Cinema, a project of alternate content theater network Emerging Pictures, inspires. On March 22 at 12:30 pm, for $25, you can take a seat in the Grand Lake Theater, an Oakland, California movie house, and enjoy the Royal Ballet’s production of Romeo & Juliet live in HD from the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, London. Thanks to the Emerging Pictures network, you might enjoy the same privilege at 19:30 Greenwich Mean Time at hundreds of movie screens across the United States.

Simulcasting live performances is a concept that has gained ground in recent years. The San Francisco Opera, London’s National Theatre and the Metropolitan Opera, among other organizations, regularly digitally broadcast live to public parks and plazas, stadiums and other large-scale public venues. Viewing stage presentations for free, often in an outdoor nighttime setting, adds a new dimension to the theatergoing experience.

Emerging Pictures, founded in 2002, broadcasts live HD opera and ballet from Russia and Europe to movie theaters, museums and performing arts centers around the U.S.

Last October, Oakland’s Grand Lake Theater hosted a live broadcast of the Bolshoi Theater’s gala re-opening celebration. The movie house also regularly presents opera in HD from Milan’s La Scala, the Royal Opera House and Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu, as well as ballet from the Paris Opera.