Tag Archives: stage

My great disappearing act

That's me dying the first time - on stage.

My great disappearing act took place at the height of my professional theatrical fame. For the princely sum of £5 and a bottle of Fanta (a night? or was the £5 for a week?) I trod the same boards the feet of Liam Neeson, Ciarán Hinds and Adrian Dunbar had before me. I played the eldest of Macduff’s sons in Shakespeare’s Scottish play at the Lyric Theatre in Belfast.

My main role was to die defending my Mum against the king’s hired killers – a bit of dramatic struggling and swooning after being stabbed. But it wasn’t all action. Oh no – I had lines too. A couple of Yeses and then that immortal exclamation.

Thou liest, thou shag-hair’d villain!

That’s what everyone remembers from that play, isn’t it? Never mind all that hubble bubble toil and trouble or being steeped so far in blood. Oh yes.

On the final night of the run, the usual murder happened. (Obviously I could have beaten the killers if I’d wanted, but I had to let them get away with it for the sake of the play. Just wanted to make that clear.)  The murderers fled, leaving the bodies of me and my mother and brother strewn across the stage. Then the lights went down completely, leaving the stage in complete darkness to allow us to drag our carcasses off stage.

As usual, I quickly nipped through the side drapes, but Continue reading

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Art Saves Lives

What you could win - note the Picasso in the top left corner.

Fancy picking up a Picasso for a tenner? That’s just £10.00. Or an early photograph of Kate Moss? Or a limited edition from the late Beryl Cook? Or my favourite, Anita Klein? Continue reading

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H-blocks in Edinburgh

I was doing some work in Edinburgh, at the Festival, and had the good fortune to see Martin Lynch’s play The Chronicles Of Long Kesh. Great production. I’d recommend it. The performance got a great reception, but even so, the cast surprised me by making it out and down before the audience, so as to be able to thank each person individually for coming to see their show. Bit overwhelming. And lovely too.

After which I checked out the play Go To Gaza And Drink The Sea. Some haunting music woven through it. Rather unremittingly sad. And odd to see someone I actually know being played as a character on the stage.

On a lighter note – Rhod Gilbert and the cat which looked like Nicholas Lyndhurst is the stand-up show for anyone who battles with technology and is suspicious of toasters, washing machines, vacuum cleaners and other humans in general. Very clever and very funny.

Here he is mithering on about something else in Australia.

And coincidentally it Australians who were singing news bulletins in the Dean Gallery. Their song about Jose Ramos Horta rejecting human rights criticisms in East Timor stuck in my mind.  Endearing.

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