Sunday, February 01, 2009

Chris Loveless, founder/director of Fallen Angel Theatre Company, says black comedy is his favourite kind of drama. Which is great, because he's directing my play Thursday Coma and I've so enjoyed watching him and the actors work on "making the invisible visible" - including the humour lurking, I hope, in the darkness. "What's the intention in that line?" he asks, as we sit round the table deconstructing my script over tea and Oliver Millingham's chocolate brownies, until I'm really not sure any more and my words start to look like soldier ants.
Challenging, and immensely exciting.

Oh What A Performance! was the typically quirky title Dave Angus chose for his monthly poetry event in St James Vaults in Bath. Dave, who so sadly died last month, was a droll performer as well as - in his own words - a militant atheist, so it was appropriate that the poetic community celebrated him with song, sonnet, and story in a memorial OWAP night last Friday. Organised by Richard Selby and attended by about a hundred people, the atmosphere was more upbeat than mournful, with many like Bard of Bath Master Duncan paying tribute to Dave's encouragement. Mary Palmer summed up: "Dave was really good at wrapping up a serious message in a lot of humour." Personally, I'll always remember him explaining the psychedelic connection between The Owl and the Pussycat and Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds at last year's Frome festival. Sailing, flying... all our stories are journeys.
Humour is truth, and as Peter Ustinov said, "Comedy is simply a funny way of being serious."

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