Visit to the National Theatre

Can you think of a better way of getting familiar with Norwegian culture than attending theatre performances?

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The National Theatre is the perfect place to go. It lies in the very centre of Oslo, near the Law Faculty of the University of Oslo, Karl Johan Street, the Royal Palace, Aker Brygge and a great number of cosy cafés, bars and shops. The outlook of the National Theatre itself is magnificent – first of all, very few buildings in Oslo remind us of classism with their grand white columns, strict symmetry and antique patterns.

The Theatre opened its doors for the first time on the 1st of September 1899, and since then it has become an integral part of Norwegian culture and a beloved place of art connoisseurs, deep philosophers and bohemian people. The history of the National Theatre could not exist separately from dramatic events of the 20th century. It became a part of people`s suffering under the regime of the Nazis, who occupied the territory of Norway and were engaged in the management of the Theatre.

Not a fan of theatre? Don`t judge too fast. The program of the National Theatre has a lot to offer even to the most fastidious and picky audience - from classic Norwegian plays to modern foreign performances, from heartrending dramatic scenes to witty satire. Trust me, the National Theatre will impress you in many ways. I can`t promise the appearance of the Phantom of the Opera though.

My personal choice and recommendation for you would be Full Spredning, an original award-winning novel written by a famous Norwegian writer Nina Lykkes. On the stage of the National Theatre the book became a reality – for both the actors and the audience. The plot seems simple at first sight – marriage crisis, doubts, love dilemma, more than 3 glasses of wine per day, betrayal, forgiveness, self-discovery. But the more you watch the play, the more you get into the story: you pity the characters, deeply analyse their personal issues and sometimes – even recognize your friends or yourself. The drama of life is seasoned with a good portion of brilliant jokes, including bitter dark humour. I won`t lay all the cards on the table and give you spoilers – you should watch Full Spredning and form your own opinion.

Many international students avoid checking prices for the theatre performances, since in their home countries the theatre is considered to be unaffordable luxury to those who are on a budget. But in Norway it is totally different. The student ticket to Full Spredning costs 133 kr, and it`s a bargain. First of all, you will be able to see the majestic interior of the National Theatre. Fairly speaking, it is way more astonishing than the one you can see at the Oslo Opera, even the whole atmosphere is different. The halls of the National Theatre will definitely exceed your lofty expectations.

Moreover, watching a play in Norwegian is an excellent training for you learning the language. The actors speak clearly and slowly, which makes it possible for you to follow up and boost your listening skills. It also could be an exiting challenge to see how much % of everything said on the stage you could understand. Instead of re-watching Skam with subtitles for the 10th time why not to try out something new?

Book your tickets online beforehand, ask a friend to join you and have a magical cultural evening in Oslo`s most beautiful theatre.

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