'Culture at the Cinema' brings stage to big screen

Residents may remember an extraordinary showing of “The Nutcracker” ballet at Regal Camana Bay Stadium 6 in December last year. Due to the popularity of that event and the increasing interest in bringing stage productions to the big screen, the cinema has now partnered with The National Theatre in London and the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow to introduce “Culture at the Cinema” to Cayman. 

This monthly series of events starting in November and continuing throughout 2016 will bring international performances of the theater and ballet to audiences in Cayman from the air-conditioned comfort of the cinema in Camana Bay. 

Commencing this Saturday, Nov. 7, at 7:30 p.m. with the critically-acclaimed production of “Hamlet,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and followed closely by Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island” on Saturday, Dec. 12, this series will bring an opportunity to sample a diverse range of cultural performances from across the globe. 

Simon Watson, operations manager for Active Capital Ltd (part of Dart Enterprises), explained the concept behind the series. 

“Here in Cayman, we have a fantastic wealth of local culture, both from the islands themselves and from the Caribbean region in general,” Watson said. “One area that is not as developed as it might be is the availability of international cultural performances to local patrons. We are extremely keen to use our existing resources to support both local and international cultural events. 

“We are proud supporters of The National Gallery, CayFilm, The Poinciana Festival and many other opportunities to showcase Caymanian culture. We believe that bringing international performances to the cinema complements this already rich blend of culture, and we look forward to developing this series in the future.” 

As well as a complimentary welcome glass of bubbles, tickets allow patrons access to The Theatre Bar, a fully licensed bar set up by the West Indies Wine Company specifically for these events, offering drinks before the performance and during the interval. To add to the look and feel of the theater, there will also be an ice-cream seller during the interval. 

Prior to each night’s showing, patrons will be able to download digital programs of the performances (where available) from the National Theatre Live App. 

According to the website, “The app gives you access to premium National Theatre content, including enhanced digital programs, and a free, regularly-updated content stream. And, for the first time, you can view archive programs from our 50-year history.” 

Due to the licensing restrictions, these events will be for over 18s only, however on Dec. 13 and 20, the cinema will show the Bolshoi Ballet’s performance of “The Nutcracker” at 6 p.m. This will be a family event and there will be no bar access, so all ages are welcome. 

The cinema has also set up a program called “Culture for Kids.” This allows all schoolchildren in Cayman to attend the performances free of charge following the initial event. 

“We believe that a wide and varied cultural education is an integral part of a young person’s development, and we are proud to be able to offer these performances free of charge to all schools across Cayman,” said Watson. 

The cinema has partnered with Ortanique restaurant to offer a specifically tailored pre-theater menu to all patrons. 

The menu and all the details for these events can be found at bigscreen.ky. Tickets for “Hamlet” and “Treasure Island” are $40 and include a complimentary glass of bubbles. They can be purchased at the Regal Camana Bay box office. 

Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic ‘Treasure Island’ will be shown on Dec. 12. – Photo: Johan Persson


The Nutcracker ballet is a magical part of the festive season that no one should miss seeing. – Photo: Damir Yusupov


Benedict Cumberbatch fans will be thrilled to see his performance of Hamlet at Regal Camana Bay this weekend. – Photo: Johan Persson