Five of the best plays to watch at home in the next few days

Thursday, 4th June 2020, 8:00 am
Updated Thursday, 4th June 2020, 8:01 am

1 CORIOLANUS

National Theatre Live, streaming from June 4 to June 11

Tom Hiddleston (Betrayal, The Avengers, The Night Manager) plays the title role in Shakespeare’s searing tragedy of political manipulation and revenge. When an old adversary threatens Rome, the city calls once more on her hero and defender: Coriolanus. But he has enemies at home too. As famine threatens the city, the citizens’ hunger swells to an appetite for change, and on returning from the field, Coriolanus must confront the march of realpolitik and the voice of angry people.Josie Rourke directs the company including Mark Gatiss (The Madness of George III, League of Gentlemen), Hadley Fraser (Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Young Frankenstein), Alfred Enoch (Tree, Harry Potter film series) and Deborah Findlay (Allelujah!, Top Girls). Coriolanus was filmed live on stage at the Donmar Warehouse in 2014 by National Theatre Live.

Where to watch: The National Theatre channel on YouTube

Tom Hiddleston in Coriolanus. Picture: Johan Persson

2 ANANSI THE SPIDER

Unicorn Theatre, streaming until July

Inspired by its 2019 five-star hit show, Anansi the Spider, about the infamous mischief-maker and master spinner of yarns, the theatre has adapted the classic West African and Caribbean tales for viewers at home. Made with its film partner Illuminations, the fun online performance features music, song and humour. One episode will be released every Saturday at 11am - the first was made available on May 30 - with each available on demand for the following three weeks. It’s ideal for ages three to eight and is presented in partnership with The Guardian.

3 THE UNKNOWN ISLAND

Gate Theatre, streaming now

The Unknown Island is a striking, inventive and rebellious adventure story about dreaming of the impossible and trying to cross the vast distances between ourselves and each other. Based on Nobel prize-winning novelist Jose Saramago’s short story, The Tale of the Unknown Island, it’s a reminder of times past - with the cast sharing bread, olives and wine with the audience.

4 THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR

Shakespeare’s Globe, streaming until June 14

Double-meanings, disguises and dirty laundry abound as Sir John Falstaff sets about improving his financial situation by wooing Mistress Page and Mistress Ford. But the ‘Merry Wives’ quickly cotton on to his tricks and decide to have a bit of fun of their own at Falstaff’s expense.

5 I WISH I WAS A MOUNTAIN

Egg theatre, streaming now

Written and performed by former Glastonbury Poetry Slam Champion Toby Thompson, I Wish I Was A Mountain uses rhyme, live music and just a smattering of metaphysical philosophy to boldly reimagine Herman Hesse’s classic fairytale.

Where to watch: vimeo.com/401349317