Saturday, November 14, 2015

Life, plans, & 'only the now'

Eventide is billed as 'a love song, an elegy, a celebration' and this story of 'three people whose worlds are disappearing' is indeed all those, but also a kind of romping version of Waiting for Godot in which Vladimir self-scripts from a joke-book and Lucky has already found her freedom.  Despite the humour ~ there's plenty in Barney Norris's sharp script ~ and contemporary theme of erosion of traditional communities, a timeless existentialist depression is never much farther away than the next bottle of Stella in John's beer garden. Young Mark sums it up: "Isn't it funny how time happens to you? It's nothing you decide, you just go along with it."  And I'm still pondering Liz's theory that tarmac is what actually shapes our lives...
A really enjoyable show, funny & moving ~ mostly simultaneously ~ with empathetic direction and superbly acted by James Doherty, Ellie Piercy, and Hasan Dixon. Eventide opened in September in London and Bristol's Brewery is the last venue on this tour but look out for the next production from award-winning southwest touring company Up In Arms.

Time strums on, part 2:  Twenty-one years on from the Tom Robinson gig when I got my Love Over Rage album & teeshirt ~ both signed ~ his new CD Only the Now is out, featuring songs "as vibrant and edgy as any he’s ever written." Tom's first band tour this century finished in Frome on Thursday, and he says "I can’t think of a better place for the grand finale… the home of Raves from the Grave, one of the top independent record stores, legendary all over the country."
Tom's evening concert was sensational, a combo of revivals and new tracks, with a crowded Cheese & Grain singing along to that iconic gay anthem and applauding political rants like The Mighty Sword of Justice and Risky Business Some reviewers were bemused, Tom says, that a singer now 'of pensionable age' should still write passionate angry songs about oppression injustice inequality discrimination and the cynical dismantling of the welfare state, as though concern should ebb even though society worsens... but he sings gentle songs too which are simply beautiful, especially the tear-tugging title track: 'there's only the now, only the now, don't ever wish it away....'  

Paradoxically, or perversely, this post ends looking forward, to our Nevertheless Fringe Theatre winter production: TOXIC COCKTAILS comprises three short plays with a darkly comic twist.
We're delighted to have Anneliese Paul and Joanna Smith, two fabulous young professional actors from Bristol, in the roles of vampire bride, burlesque dancer, robot, and cold-cure-seeking Shirley in our new in-house production upstairs at the Cornerhouse on Wednesday 16 & Thursday 17 December, 8pm. "The best hour you'll ever get for a fiver" to quote previous feedback, and the booking list (01373 472042) is now open...

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