Saturday, October 27, 2007

Out-of-control theatre and a writing milestone

A lazy morning today - and goodness me but it's about time we had one of those. They don't come round often enough. As a result, Lord H and I had a fashionably late breakfast, accompanied by the fashionably late (these days) post. I was delighted to see that the latest edition of the Woking Theatre programme had arrived which tells me all the exciting plays I can see next year (I'm a Friend of the theatre, so I always get the programme early).

However, I fear that the Woking play planner (whoever he or she may be) has obviously been at the Pimm's a little too often or may even have been nobbled by a rival theatre company, as everything (everything, dahlings, everything) is a ruddy musical. What is this?? Am I in the twilight zone?? Must I don my glitter and ballgown and launch my top notes every time I want to go out these days? (A scary thought indeed and enough to clear the boards for sure.) But I jest not - here is next year's programme on the main stage:

1. Stomp (theatre, dance, comedy and percussion)
2. South Pacific
3. Aspects of Love
4. Zorro (a new musical by The Gipsy Kings - who???)
5. Disney High School Musical (What? Lord preserve us ...!)
6. The Rat Pack Musical
7. Tommy Steele in Doctor Doolittle (the Musical) - with the rather terrifying strapline of "You've never seen anything like it". No, I'm sure not. And is Tommy Steele still alive anyway??

And coming soon to the same main stage:

1. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat
2. The Wedding Singer (um, the Musical)
3. Fiddler on the Roof
4. West Side Story.

Ye gods. Does no-one actually do plays any more?? Please God, give us some decent real drama (without music) to go to. In despair, Lord H and I turned to the smaller Rhoda McGaw fringe theatre programme in the hope of some dramatic oasis. Alas, none is apparent. The Rhoda McGaw programme next year consists of:

1. Oliver (performed by the Winston Churchill School)
2. When in Rome (a tongue-in-cheek musical set in the times of peasants and gladiators, beautiful princesses and devious villains - what? All of them??)
3. Oklahoma!
4. The Gondoliers
5. Oliver (again!!! But this time performed by the Karen Clarke Theatre Company, in case you might have missed the Churchill School attempt ...)
6. Young at War (a new musical set in World War 1. Words fail me ...)

They are also staging "Gangshow 2008 - 100 Years of Scouting", but I am too traumatised to mention it. But, yes, it does include music too.

Really, my dears, I am speechless. I fear Surrey is becoming a county of song and trivia, and soon we will all be harmonising our sentences and communicating by a series of notes and trills. I'd better start limbering up then for the new era ... Grab your earplugs now, people.

Anyway, for the rest of the day I have been working away on that sex scene (helped along by a significant slice of Guy's chocolate cake) in The Bones of Summer. Feel quite pleased with it now, and have worked out something dramatic to do at the end of it, which might help the plot along a little - at last! Not sure if it will work, but I'll see how it is when I get there. I've also finally made it to the grand total of 40,000 words, which is roughly where I wanted to be round about now, so that's given me a boost too. Here's hoping I can bash some more sentences out before year end. With or without song.

I've also caught up on my video viewing, managing to get to grips with the latest excitements on "Heroes" (no, no, Simone can't be dead - she can't be! And is it me or is Peter Petrelli seriously sexy when he's angry? Ooh-err, missus ...), "Ugly Betty" (no, no, Henry, you can't go, it's too traumatic ...) and "My Name is Earl" (don't press start on that tennis ball machine, no no ...). All great stuff indeed.

Tonight, Lord H and I are planning to go to see Gyles Brandreth at the Electric Theatre, which is part of the Book Festival programme. Which, as Lord H says, is something of a shame as if I didn't go it would mean I'd have made an entire clean sweep of the Book Festival and not gone to anything at all, aha! Something of a coup for a writer really, Z-list or otherwise.

Today's nice things:

1. Laughing (in a nervous way) at the theatre programmes
2. Writing
3. TV.

Anne Brooke
Anne's website

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