Thursday, September 20, 2007

Holiday tomorrow. La la la la la la la.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A little sliver of culture at the weekend there. Not that I'm getting paranoid.

I went to see the Warhol exhibition at the National Galleries on Saturday. Which I found mildly disappointing although I love his pop arty stuff. But then I went with a five year old in tow and know for sure that I missed at least one room and quite possibly more. Miriam wasn't deeply impressed by all his sketches so I had little time to study these. And then she discovered the room with the helium filled silver pillows and that was it really for the rest of the hour that we were there. Mind you, I'd say the entrance fee was almost worth it for the silvery helium alone. A magic example of how orn'ery people can be captivated by pretty ordinary things if they're allowed to play. Easy for me to say though as I got in for free.

And then "Atonement" on Sunday evening which was slightly overblown I thought. Of course the book was better. But Mr McEvoy was cute and the stunning beach scene more than made up for any other inadequacies.

The theatre season starts up again very soon. I can be more cultural then... And I am making ineffectual calls to madame director now and again in the name of GMing. Helpful days.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Actually, I've not been a totally culture-less heathen as I weakly agreed to general manage for Wendy's show, "Wild Honey" earlier this week.

For those that don't know our weird group vocabulary, this in effect means producing the show. Though actually much of the worst work is done already as she has a set builder, a stage manager, the best lighting man in Edinburgh and a sound man on board.

With luck, I'll hardly have to do anything...

Monday, September 10, 2007

I didn't do a single cultural thing all weekend. And my best effort - a short spell reading in the sun in the garden - ended in disaster when I got locked in. Someone trying to tell me something? Or some spiteful neighbour paying me back for too much music too late at night?

Anyway, dark post-festival days. I'll try harder next weekend.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

The very final event of the Festival for me was called Optical Identity. A collaboration between Theatre Cryptic and the T'ang Quartet. A little avant garde perhaps for my liking but I thought it showed open-minded willingness to experience new things.

I anticipated needing to take a snoozing rest during the performance, not being an enormous fan of contemporary music though I hoped that a scintillating light display would keep me awake. So I took a precautionary second coffee of the day in the theatre bar before we took our places in the Grand Circle.

But even the precautionary second coffee sadly wasn't enough to keep me alert. I made it through the first few pieces (extracts from which can be viewed here) but the heat and the dark cosy warmth overtook me before very long. Ross sat, sulking hands under his chin throughout, looking distinctly unimpressed. And apparently it might have been more impressive if they hadn't experienced various technical hitches which prevented some of the optical effects being displayed in their full glory. But even the promise of this wasn't enough to redeem it for him.

I feel it's unfair of me to pass comment as I saw so little of it.

But it was not one of my festival highlights. Let us put it that way.

Still, the night was redeemed by a 3am finish to a night of drinking and dancing in my beloved Spiegel. A suitably wriggling end to my festival.

Monday, September 03, 2007

Fuerzabruta was pretty cool. Located in a giant black tent next to a shopping centre, it’s not the most romantic of locations but the innards of the tent were filled with smoke, a giant bar and plenty beautiful people so you soon forget you’re milling around in a carpark.

You can be cruel and say it’s just a circus featuring a bunch of acrobats with some smart effects (as mother did) or you can be kind and say it’s an incredible piece of physical theatre (as father did). I think I would err on my father’s side of the fence.

It’s another salutary lesson in how electric light can make giant pieces of plastic sheeting and some clever rope tricks look cool. Though an incredibly talented cast, a brilliant DJ with mad Einstein hair and a lot of splooshing water helped things along too.

In hindsight, much of the element of surprise had been lost by the fact that going along at the tail end of the festival meant I’d heard numerous versions of events already. So the swimming pool showpiece was amazing – but not as amazing as if I’d had no idea at all in advance that it would float into sight towards the end of the show.

But I didn’t begrudge the £25 ticket price in the slightest and you can’t ask for more than that. I think they’re touring Europe next so go see.