Sunday, 14 March 2010

True Stories/Carnesky's Ghost Train/The Review Show

A bit like Errollyn Wallen's Song Club (Muthatucker passim), True Stories Told Live does exactly what it says on the tin. Ordinary people (well as ordinary as you can be to do this kind of thing) tell an extended story to a roomful of strangers. I heard five very contrasting tales the night I went; bedsit life in sixties London, the trails and tribulations of Irish dancing competitions, travels in Kazakhstan, touring Ireland with a dysfunctional rock band, and the life and times of an incorrigible bon viveur. Great stuff, some funny, some tragic and all told with wonderful colour and warmth. It's free too but make sure you get on the guest list (see link below). I dunno, what with song clubs, poetry nights and now this, are we rediscovering our Victorian heritage? Whatever, this is more entertaining than an evening in front of the telly or a solitary roam on the internet.

To Blackpool to film a ghost train. Actually it's still only a shed but work is well underway on Marisa Carnesky's forthcoming attraction which should be, all things being equal, a very welcome addition to Blackpool's sea front. It's a bold and slightly left field take on the traditional ghost train that draws on Carnesky's Jewish roots. Having done the rounds (quite literally) for a few years Carnesky has never been able to find a permanent home for it until now thanks to Blackpool Council. The trouble is there are many in the town who think far too much money has been spent setting it up so there is an enormous pressure on her, and the council, for the ride to deliver when it opens on Good Friday. Anyway, I'm filming this story as it unfolds.

Caught The Review Show - 'from Glasgow' - last night. I don't know what the significance of 'from Glasgow' was because it could have been a studio discussion from anywhere. The only Scottish element was some poor singer from Scottish Opera who, after Martha Kearney's fumbled introduction, sang an aria from La Boheme, accompanied by someone on one of those lifeless electronic keyboards. I suppose once you've flown up six English contributors, provided them with overnights, meals etc, there probably isn't much left in the budget for a half decent piano. Ironically, the overriding theme of tonight's show was climate change.

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