Wish granted. I did see him, on Wednesday night, at the Popcorn Taxi Q&A.
Foolishly I'd left my camera behind, because they never let you take photos at these things, but the Armitage Army was out in force and I guess they just gave up. I snapped a few with my phone (oh dear) but mostly I just sat and paid attention to Richard, or as much as I could, I had one of those handbag rummagers beside me who sit with their bag open on their lap and dig into it without ever pausing with both hands, for the duration, with plenty of crinkly plastic bags to make one weep. Why she bothered to fly from interstate for the event and then spend the whole freakin' time head down, digging in her bag like a demented wombat, I will never know. So, as much as I had that and the very rude people behind me, I tried to concentrate on what the man was saying and bask in his lovliness. It wasn't easy (the man was lovely, the people around me, not so much, which was distressing as the regular Popcorn Taxi crowd are quiet, attentive and genial by nature).
Anyway, there always has to be a catch, and Richard himself was warm, funny, charming, and completely freaking gorgeous. That is one good looking man. Sadly, the Q&A consisted of your typical groan inducing 'questions' (seriously, the old 'I'm an actor' and 'will you marry me' variety, wankers), so I didn't learn much about his thoughts on the Hobbit, characters, other roles, or his time on set (this Vine interview reddresses some of that), but he did remark on how he needed the big pelt to stay in character, and related a few sans trou stories that amused (apparently there's a dwarf calendar, the mind fairly boggles). There was also a crack about feeling like they'd been made to run around both the north and south islands for the chase scenes.
But hey, it was Richard Armitage. In the freakin' flesh. Sitting right there. Being handsome and wonderful. Swoon.
I do not deserve such fun (and at least the lovely lasses in the queue ahead of me wanted to hear about my Sherlock sighting). Oh yeah, the queue to get in. Like I said, the forum fans were out in force, and quiet terrifying it was, too (nothing at all like the crowd watching Sherlock film).
Last night I went off to the Seymour to see Clockwork Orange, and I'm so glad I did because it was amazing. Just amazing.
I wouldn't say I was a fan of the book or film, but I'd been introduced for both, and remained interested. Yes, this play owed a lot to the Kubrick film, but they were the most balletic droogs I've seen since West Side Story, and the dance, the almost tableau set pieces, the music (oh, the music, Placebo, Jefferson Airplane, Bowie, Beethoven - natch), the stark empty stage, that never felt empty (unless it had to be), filled with characters, fully utilised, the colour coded props, and the cast. The guy who played Alex, so fierce, so lithe, prowling the stage like a tiger, raging one minute, fey the next (they really took young Malcolm's ambiguity and ran with it), so freakin' charismatic.
I loved it, I really did. It was just a play I took myself to see for no other reason than I wanted to see it, and I'd read interviews with the director that made me think deep thoughts, made me think an insight was in the offing. And so it was (and like a modern gal, she seems to like her men gorgeous, dangerous and more than a bit gay, or is it just me).
Lots of interesting ideas, free will and control, the who do what thou wilt taken to extremes, the folly of using naughty boys to capture naughty boys, the brutalism of insitutions, the callousness of science and government, the breakdown of family and society. Not to mention the Dickensian coincidences that have characters crossing and recrossing paths to dramatic effect. That and my quota for seeing beautiful young boys fucking onstage being just about filled - heh. None of the reviews mentioned that (smiley face).
And I made it just about to the end without thinking of Big Bunny, right until they brought out a carrot as a prop (surely just a coincidence). Yes, The Goodies were my gateway to Burgess. Deal with it.
Came home to find Smash had completely turned into Glee. Just cancel it already, please. I was only watching for Jack, anyway. It's like Steve, the boozy New York years. Or at least, it was.
Speaking of shows I love to hate, there's Da Vinci's Demons over on FX. Now, I love Tom Riley, but, my dear boy, it's gonna take a lot to redeem you after this travesty.
Where do I start? Okay, it's just a show, and I could put aside the history and legacy of the man and watch it as the sub Xena romp it is. I was somewhat outraged, or, at the very least, peeved that they'd decided to airbrush over Leo's sexuality (the man wasn't even ambiguously gay, fer fek's sake, he was a convicted cottager) because they had an eye on more squeamish markets (like Oz, fer instance, to this is the same country that gave the world Dame Edna, or rather, exactly, yes, what was I saying, moving on, more on Barry later), but they've made Leo's BFF and life partner a comedy sidekick and, and, mind, they've made all the villians of the piece elaborately gay, so much so I cannot overlook the obvious homophobia of the creators (and, seriously, that level of phobia is usually associated with the sort of spittle flecked extreme denial you get with your average right wing pollie or religious gasbag). Unless they've got a point to make about these powerful men being evil because of issues, man, well, not even then, I don't think.
And I haven't even mentioned reducing all those wonderful books to a pathetic sub-Brown artificial mystery/secret relic chase. Lawks, with all the homophobia, gurning bad guys and ridiculous coded messages I can only presume it'll all end up on a nazi sub.
Oh, Tom, I'm not sure I'll ever forgive you for this. Thank goodness I got to drool in peace over pages of the codex in the British Library before I saw this tripe.
I know there's better telly out there, but I guess I have to be home for it first (also, everything is on at 20:30 Wed and 20:30 Sun and the rest of the week is a blasted heath and I can't watch telly online as I only have 0.04k speeds so if I miss it I miss it as I can't record off telly any more).
Saturday: So, Barry Humphries. The goblin king himself (Hobbit cast members seen this week: 2). I was so thrilled when I heard Mr Humphries and Meow Meow were presenting songs from the Weimar with the SCO at the Opera House. It's an era I seem to be falling into more and more, via Amanda Palmer, the Three Penny opera and Mad Square, and I was curious to see this. So glad I went. It was bloody brilliant.
First the SCO strolled on in shabby period dress, playing a seedy version of Mack The Knife. Then we launched into it. Mr Humphries, as the impish MC, told of how he'd found the music, in an old bookshop in Melbourne, as a schoolboy, and his thoughts for the previous owner who must have packed it in a suitcase in his escape to Melbourne (still vaguely central European because of all the refugees), he told of trying to track down the artists and recordings. For many pieces, it was the first time they'd been played in over 80 years. Thanks to the man with his suitcase of sheet music, this music is no longer lost.
And what music: playful, angry, experimental. It was called odd and unfamiliar but to me it was very familiar, I'd heard similiar on old tv shows and films from the 50s, 60s and 70s, and of course, that's were the survivors ended up, doing hack work for studios. It was very, very familiar to me. One piece was so Pon Farr, right down to the tamborine bit, and when they got up to the blustering strings I had to struggle to repress a giggle and squirmed in my seat. Mr Humphries saw me and waggled his eyebrows at me, damn nearly set me off, but I settled. I loved it all.
And Meow Meow, she was brilliant, torchy, heartbreakingly funny, commanding the entire hall. And when the two of them teamed up for coquettish duets, oh, magic happened - especially for Mousie when they dropped the coats to reveal...pyjamas (merciful gods).
I loved it, I loved it. I really dig that music. For me, it's the music I grew up with, after a fashion, I just never knew it at the time. The whole Caberet thing used to be a turn off (an overdone and overripe trope in the 80s), but now, now I think I am caberet curious - grin.
And that was my week. Normally I wouldn't have block booked myself when I had to move to a new building, but I'm having such a miserable time with that I'm glad I slammed myself with bread and circuses.
Also, had a lovely bratwirst and beer at the Seymour and an angus burger and merlot last night (don't knock it till you've tried it) so at least I'm not starving, because he foodcourt in the new building is dire. They still sell muffins and there's no decent sushi. Can you say stuck in the 90s?
I want a smoky bar, with torch singers, there must be one somewhere.
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