Thursday, December 20, 2012

Sound Mind, neatly-named cabaret night for mental-health charity Mind at the Alma Tavern, pulled in some great acts including delicious acapella from Eirlys Rhiannon and gorgeous accompanied songs from Rebecca Cant. Highlight for me was a superb set from performance poet Sally Jenkinson ~ I would give you a sliver of her witty & lucent words but I dropped my bag down a gap at the back of the auditorium at the start of the show so wasn't able to make my usual sneaky notes. Trust me, she's awesome.

Also awesome, and with an even bigger audience: the all-male production of Twelfth Night at Apollo London in which Mark Rylance (Olivia) and Stephen Fry (Malvolio) have been gathering daisy-chains of rave reviews. Tim Carroll's stylish direction clarifies both the beautiful and the brutal, ranging from homo-erotic tenderness to South Park levels of comic violence. Mark Rylance is brilliant as a lustful and teetering Olivia, especially in an unforgettable manic Jerusalem moment of pike-wielding, and Stephen Fry brings human frailty to her beleaguered steward. Even from 'restricted' seating in the crows nest - sorry, balcony - an experience to treasure, and as part of the Stepping Out Theatre Company charabanc outing I had the bonus attraction of a photo-call with Mark, who is their patron, afterwards.
And then to the Queens Head for a festive supper before heading home through seasonal illuminations... Happy Christmas, everyone.

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