Culture in Quarantine, BBC scheme
BBC launches Culture in Quarantine, a ‘virtual festival of the arts’ that promises to rehome the UK’s arts and culture scene online
In a statement announcing the scheme, Claypole said: ‘Today, the BBC has announced its broader purpose during the coronavirus crisis. In the realm of the arts, we have said that we need to give British culture an audience that can’t be there in person. We will run an essential arts and culture service across platforms that will keep the arts alive in people’s homes, focused most intensely across BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 4, BBC Two, BBC Four, BBC Sounds, BBC iPlayer and our digital platforms. We will do this in close consultation and collaboration with organisations like Arts Council England and other national funding and producing bodies.’
A recording of Mike Bartlett's play Albion at the Almeida Theatre will become available to watch online as part of the scheme
Claypole went on to add that the new service would include ‘guides to shuttered exhibitions or permanent collections in museums and galleries; performances from world-class musicians and comedians; new plays created especially for broadcast featuring exceptional talent; the experience of book festivals with privileged access to authors and great ideas switched online; and quarantine diaries from creative visionaries.’
So, what will be available to enjoy online? Theatre buffs who missed, or are keen to rewatch, Mike Bartlett’s Albion at the Almeida and Emma Rice’s Wise Children at the Old Vic, will have the chance to enjoy recorded versions of both via the service. While those with an ear for classical can tune into BBC Radio 3’s new series of special chamber studio recordings. BBC Four’s Life Drawing Live is also set to return, in a bid to boost the mental health and creativity of those stuck at home.
The scheme is also committed to reflecting the broader climate in the arts world, from the difficulties organisations and artists are facing to the imaginative solutions being developed to maintain their practice. Tune in to Radio 4’s Front Row and Front Row Late on BBC Two for the latest developments.
Read more about the BBC's Culture in Quarantine scheme