Wednesday, May 22, 2019

At last! These are out on the loose. So I can revel in them. Beautiful pics of our Joan with Bellfield in the background. Love it! With all thanks to Jon Davey.

(Part two.)

The librarian could not. He told me the book cost £90. They didn't have a copy in the lbrary. I felt sad and crushed.

BUT

He thought they might have a copy in the university library. 

He looked it up.

HOORAY!

They had it.

But then there's the tiny flaw that I can't get into the university library. (And I felt a brief flood of nostalgia for the days when I revised (the brief days) from home in Nottingham at the local university library during my summer holidays.)

But wait!

The man - the librarian man - tells me of a miraculous card that the library provides that gives you access to many many other libraries in Edinburgh, including the university library. "It only lasts for a year", he said apologetically. Well, friend, I have four weeks (at that point) so that's not too much of an issue.

Better and better. (Another miracle of Joan.) He can prepare one of these special little cards for me there and then. My heart dances. I skip awayh from the library reflecting on how lucky I am to live in a world where there is so much access to information. Lucky days. 

So that Saturday, I hurriedly head into town, bound for the university library, heart full of hope and a yearning for Inquisitorial answers. 

Again, I need to dismount the bus. To be continued.
 

Thursday, May 16, 2019

In a final flurry of inquisitiveness about the history we're about to represent on stage, I've been questing to find out about the Inquisition.

Which is a funny endeavour as surely everyone has heard of the Inquisition and I know it's Spanish and somehow fanatical and something to do with the church. But in actuality, I don't know anymore than that. 

We have a stern character in the play who is called The Inquisitor. We don't know anything of him or his background, beyond knowing that he's sent from Spain. But he is all sorts of mean to Joan and seems to delight in creepily stamping all over her. So I am eager to find out how historically accurate Anouilh's representation is. If only to allow us to ignore all we find as it's not anywhere near the script. 

So I finally got round to looking up some books. (My history tutors would turn in their not yet graves as I go to the Guardian and find out what they've reviewed and use that as my start. How populist.)

I ordered these books from the library. My dear local library that has given me books on testosterone and gender and 13 year old boys with autism and books by Hilary Mantel and all the goodness. 

And one turned up last week. Some fat tome about the Spanish Inquisition. I poured over it as I walked home from the library, prompting a passer-by to call cheerily that this must be a good book. I resisted the temptation to flaunt the (erudite in comparison to my usual diet) cover at her, therefore confirming my status as lunatic and darted home. 

To discover that the Inquisition in Spain was set up at least fifty years after little Joany was burnt. (Which took place in 1431.)

WHAT?

I felt alarmed. My world shifted and rocked slightly on its foundations. Surely Anouilh wasn't writing lies?

I anxiously turned back to the internet. At the library. Somehow certain that their book catalogue would give me a more accurate read on events than Google. Though in fact, through incompetence, I failed to access the library's book catalogue on their in-library computers and was too embarrassed to ask so I ended up using Google in the library.

And discovered that the Inquisition in France sprung up in medieval times.

Phew. Ok. So that's all good. 

So then (trusty Guardian) I found a book on the Inquisition in the middle years in France. I hurried to the librarian with quaking heart. Could he find it for me?

(I need to get off the bus and go to work - so you'll have to wait in suspense!)

Friday, May 10, 2019

In amongst what appears to be an endless to do list, Scottish Ballet's Spring! was totally enchanting. We were sat right up front, at the conductor's shoulder, so had a superb view of the orchestra during the extremely tasteful (to my ignorant mind) Mozart medley. And then pole position seats for the quirky flirty lovely Scott Joplin. A proper treat.

I've also squished in a wonderfully dark TV show called Hinterland. It's a gloomy detective show set in a tiny village in Wales. And if I say it's proper Scandi Noir stuff, that's intended as a great compliment. I watched the first series with relish, as I'd understood it to consist of only four episodes ever.  And for anyone who's ever tried to stagger through seven series' of something, this is an undoubted bonus. Looking it up now, I discover there's more. I might have to succumb.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Jon Davey, who I'd kind of thought was out of my league photographically in recent times for show-related projects, was kind enough to pop along to our (first rehearsal in our) wonderful venue on Saturday and take all sorts of wonderful photos. These are some of my favourites. 



Thanks to super duper publicity officer Hannah, we've been getting a wee bit of press coverage for the show. Here (thank you, Dan Lentell). And here.

I was most interested to note that shortly after the Edinburgh 49 piece had been posted, we sold a ticket to SOMEONE I DON'T KNOW. Which doesn't mean that much really as I don't know all the friends and family of the cast. But still, it was exciting.

Thursday, May 02, 2019

I urged Joan to read the chapter in The Book Of Joan about when Joan first hears the voices talking to her. I'm not sure she took much from it, despite my subsequent inquisition but she was very polite. Hopefully she ignored all the skin cutting and grafting which I found frankly disturbing though this was probably the point. Then I rushed the fearsome book back to a charity shop. So both Shelter from whence it was purchased and now dear Oxfam should profit from our limited education.

Friday, April 26, 2019

So a week ago today found us stumbling about in Portobello with one of those squishes up small but spills out enormously reflective light shield thingys to get some publicity shots for the show. They're all super duper secret but photographer extraordinaire Jon Davey has published one on his Blipfoto so I figure I can get away with sharing one little small one here. Here is Joan, lurking in amongst the blossom, outside Bellfield. Love it.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

In my continuing quest to research research research the topic, I read this but I'm sorry to say that for the mosr part, I found it tiresome and ridiculous. Here is a more eloquent discussion of its virtues than I have the appetite to pen. 

However, I did get one thing from it which was an interesting thought that rather than melodic, harmonious, wondrous, Joan may have found the sudden and unexpected appearances of all of these saints something like terrifying. Something even (heaven forfend, literally) like possession. Which is quite a thought.

So I entreated our Joan to read chapter eight which describes this (and ignore all the awful stuff about skin scarring and anatomically accurate observations about female peculiarities). And this lead her to message me this morning with her thoughts about the voices and how they might make the character feel. So Book of Joan, I thank you. You've added something to proceedings, even if it weren't quite what I'd hoped and expected.