On Friday I left work a bit early to get on the train down to London to watch the first night of the Wishbone show, Your Hand In Mine on which Katie had collaborated. It had come a long way since the first performance in Reading. Instead of the performers wandering amongst the audience as before, we were treated to a more conventional us-and-them stage at the front (Katie’s Dad was relieved). Paul Murray and Karen Glossop gave their usual edgy, energetic and entertaining performances and their two mildly disturbed stories wove together satisfyingly towards a sweet but slightly Sunset Beach ending (I’m told adjustments have since been made). It’s still running, so get down to that Lyric theatre in Hammersmith.
Masquing the Red Death
We had to get back on Friday night because at 9am on Saturday we had to arrive at mac for The Masque Of The Red Death technical rehearsal. This time no sparks rained from the light fittings, and the two performances on Saturday and Sunday nights had no technical errors (as promised!) Philip Holyman’s script adapted the Edgar Allan Poe short story as a monologue, and Gareth Nicholls brought it to life with a sometimes funny and sometimes frightening performance. Katie pointed out that one gets a rather different perspective from the box, so instead of enjoying the performance I ended up spotting deviations from the script while waiting for the next button press, like a geeky train set conductor.
Well, we did it! 70 miles in 3 days and lots of interesting conversations along the way.
My highlights included lots of deer-spottings, the village of Castle Acre, and the beast of Coldharbour Wood!
On the down side, Jim got horrible pains in his right foot and my shoulders were sore the whole time!
It was all worth it, as Walsingham is not only a picturesque Norfolk village, but also a thought-provoking shrine; England’s Nazareth…
I’ve got yet another shamless plug, I’m afraid. Katie has been involoved in the latest devleopment phase of Wishbone’s latest show, Your Hand In Mine at the Lyric Hammersmith (that’s in London, Brummies). It’s a good theatre, a good company and the last version of the show show I saw (the first outing in Reading) showed much promise. It’s worth a visit.
We got a colossal Easter egg from Katie’s mum. The only logical way to break it was with a karate chop. Yes, it did go everywhere.
Last Wednesday we went to another of Simon Day’s Pilot extravaganza theatrical scratch nights. He’d pulled out all the stops for the tenth outing, and it was the best yet that I’ve been to, and also the biggest, with a full house. Kindle Theatre did an interesting preview of their new show, and Simon’s The Plasticine Men company did another high-energy, and rather more experimental piece than usual. Jake Oldershaw had written and produced a great little one-woman piece in which the actress interacts with sketch-drawn images of places and a dog on a projection. I’m afraid that even though the Talking Birds show was interesting, it was so experimental that I don’t remember much about it. That might have been to do with my liquid dinner of a pint of Guiness, though. The final performance was amateur dramatics with a twist – the cast had met and learnt their show via youtube.com. It was interesting to see their raw and untrained performances, particularly at the end when they each collapsed onto the front of the stage.
On the weekend we saw a short section of Forced Entertainment’s show And on the Thousandth Night…, which is just as well, because it was going on for six hours. The audience were freely allowed to walk in and out. I hope this was also the case with the 24 hour show they performed a few years ago. Although it very definitely fell into the category of experimental theatre, it was actually very enjoyable; the audience were in hysterics as we entered.
The Red Death Returns
I’m very excited that finally the show which Katie and I are teching is on this weekend. You may remember if you’ve been reading this blog that the last performance of The Masque of the Red Death was cancelled due to very scary electrical problems. Now that we’re in mid summer (at least it feels like it), there will be no such problems, and the sound cues will all be perfect. I’ve got the script, and all the cues are in there. It will be great, I promise. I will not miss any cues, and the sound will be perfectly co-ordinated with the explosive acting and razor-sharp script. All the cues are on that script, and it is a good script. Come and see the show, it will be really, really good. And the sound will work.
A Strange Concept
We’ve taken up the gauntlet laid down by Al Gore, and sold our car. That’s it. No more car. My three-car-owning-colleague couldn’t understand this as a concept, no matter how many times I repeated “no car”. Let’s see how long we last…