Tuesday, 27 January 2009

In other news...

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There seems to have been a massive revivification of the blogosphere of late (btw, is “blogosphere” actually the worst word in the world, or does it just feel like it?). Blogs are springing up, springing back to life, or simply springing to my attention for the first time. Whichever way, it feels like after something of a slump in 2008 theatre blogging is finding itself newly interesting once again. Hell, with the three or four pre-press night reviews of Complicit out there, it’s starting to feel like it might even be *useful*. Below is a selection of new and new-to-me blogs:

Ant Hampton of Rotozaza (I’m guessing it isn’t meant to be anonymous – message me quickly if it is, Ant) has renewed his blogging efforts and is posting a nice mix of promotional / archival stuff, found materials, alonside musings on both performances and performance.

I’ve never knowingly met Daniel Austen but mentions of Jersey and a Liron makes me wonder if I without knowing his surname. Either way, his blog has some lovely stuff in it.

Choreographer and publicist to the avant garde Nic Conibere and the company Theatre O have both recently started using the blog format to flag up their work.

All Play, I suspect, *is* supposed to be faintly anonymous, so we’ll keep it that way unless I’m told otherwise. Anonymous or not, it’s jolly good.

And lastly, not a theatre blog, per se, but a theatre project/installation-in-progress can be found at Some of the Things I Have Done to Get Over You. The idea is people send the blog's owner accounts of, well, some of the things they did to get over someone and the blog-owner puts them online. I’m looking forward to seeing how it develops as a piece of work in the coming months.

I've also updated my blog-links at the side, archiving those which no longer seem to be "live" with an "x -" prefix, just to make browsing for new stuff a bit easier. If, I've x-ed your blog by mistake, do comment and I'll fix it. Apologies, also, to Zack Calhoon whose blog ends up underneath them as a result.

The “other news” bit...

Last week Postcards... had a bit of a holiday from theatre in anticipation of what promises to be a ferocious couple of weeks of non-stop press nights. Instead it's been seeing bands and even watching telly. It might not sound like much, but the occasional change of medium is as good a way as any to recharge one’s critical faculties.

Thus, today's “cover photo” above is half an hour of Postcards...' favourite extant band, the Official Secrets Act, in session last year. They played their best gig yet last Thursday and, with any luck, will be very successful indeed by this time next year. The first song – I think it’s called Back to the Mainstream – has now been stuck in my head for five days. Czech it, as the band like to say.

Other OSA stuff can be found here, here and here. While the video for their last single, So Tomorrow, is on YouTube and, through the magic of embedding, below:



I’m also terribly fond of their video tour diary, the best of which is almost certainly Day Four – Runcorn. I have no idea whether this will appeal to anyone else, but it makes me laugh like an idiot.



Sorry, I’ll stop with the appalling fanboy stuff now. In other band-related news, Postcards...' other friend-on-tour Like a Thief is currently working her way south from Scotland and is also posting a series of very sweet video diaries en route. I am particularly fond of this one:



So that’s modern pop music sewn up, now for TV... The output of BBC4 doesn’t seem to get talked about half as much as it should if last Wednesday is anything to go by, which admittedly it probably isn’t. First up there was the first episode of the first TV series from Cowards, the idiosyncratic comedy quartet (Jesus, I'm starting to sound like a Radio 2 announcer again) - a sample can be found below, although the whole first episode is still on iPlayer at time of posting:



Then, after an episode of Madmen, which also seemed pretty good, there was Beau Brummell: This Charming Man – a 2006 made-for-TV film scripted by playwright Simon Bent about the life of Beau Brummell. This was a really great bit of TV film-making. It had that kind of make-no-bones-about-it we’re cheap-as-chips and just as enjoyable joie de vivre and swagger that Michael Winterbottom’s better films (24 Hour Party People and Cock and Bull Story) have. It also had a period instruments quartet cover of Lust for Life as the opening music and the original Smiths song from which it took its title for the credits. I suppose it’s a sad reflection on my stage addiction that I really love films which aspire to a kind of theatricality, and this had bucketloads combined with more theatrical allusions, quotations and in-jokes than you could shake a stick at. The below isn’t really a great scene, but it’s the best YouTube could come up with. I’m not sure the film is actually quite as good as I remember it being, but watched with the right amount of wine, it passes the time very pleasantly...



And finally...

I should also, if only for my own reference, also quickly reference my first few Guardian blogs and Time Out reviews of this year:

Obama/Othello

Bush/political theatre

Anyway, I’ve rambled. Sorry about that. Postcards... aims to be back with a bit of concision as soon as possible. In the meantime, hope you enjoy the links and vids…

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Some of the Things I Have Done to Get Over You" looks like a new site from following the link? Who created it - a friend of yours or otherwise how did you hear about it?

TS said...

Thanks for the big-up on All Play.

It's not meant to be anonymous so much as pseudonymous, so that anyone who knows me will instantly recognise it as me - the initials TS being a big clue - but anyone who doesn't might not. Much the same as the genius image that my friend created that I use for my Facebook profile.

But I also don't mind you saying that I'm Tassos.

Andrew Haydon said...

Anonymous: "Some of the Things I Have Done to Get Over You" is new, and yes, I know the person who made it. To reassure you all, it has nothing to do with me whatsoever beyond that.

Tassos, hello! Thanks for the clarification. My pleasure, re: the bigging up :-)

Ant Hampton said...

hi hi, thanks for the mention - no, not meant to be anonymous - i declare myself on the side in fact! best, Ant