Filed under: Arts, creativity, Scotland, snp | Tags: bonhams, bonhams scottish colourists sale, Scotland's chattering classes, scottish money
This particular Peploe is penciled in at around £300k – £500k.
It’s nice like.
I, for one, am looking forward to a night of listening in on the Scottish chattering classes charicaturising themselves.
It promises to be simply divine.
Filed under: football, life, photography, Scotland, sports, stories | Tags: homeless world cup, scotland win homeless world cup, scotland win in paris, the Scottish dream
Yesterday Scotland won the Homeless World Cup in Paris.
64 nations competed.
We beat Mexico 4 – 3 in the final and it was said that our team may not have been the most skilled in the tournament, but we were the most committed.
It’s not like we lead the world in Homelessness.
We beat a nation many multiple times our population.
I suspect it had something to do with money not being a factor or a motivation.
I suspect it brought out our national pride.
I suspect it was a level playing field regardless of national stature or population.
This is an awesome concept and a creation of Scotland (Mel Young conceived it).
The fact that the story made a pictureless 3 x 3 story at the bottom of page 3 in our national paper is a scandal.
Scotland. Wise up.
Filed under: Arts, creativity, family, humour, Scotland, theatre | Tags: 2011 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Bluemouth Inc, dance marathon, David Greig, David Paul Jones, fct, FORK, forth childrens theatre, grid iron, marc almond, mark kermode, Oedipus, Pink Noise, Royal Lyceum theatre company, steven berkoff, Ten PLagues, the observer, The Strange Undoing of Prudencia GHart, what remains
It may seem a little disingenuous for me to offer my thoughts on a Fringe when, like most mortals, holding down a day job makes it hard to see as many shows as the legion of professional critics get to see – and not to mention the fact that I was effectively staging my own production (as Chairman of FCT who put on ten exhilarating performances of The Chess Game).
But, if I was to use complete objectiveness as my watchword for blogging you’d all be desperately dissapointed. I’m sure my predilection for frankness makes for a more interesting read.
I read with delight an extended extract from Mark Kermode’s biography in the Observer earlier today and I realise his style is one that I aspire to. His destruction of Michael Bay’s Pearl Harbour made me laugh out loud and lick my lips.
It was a Fringe dominated by shows from the collosus of Scottish new writing; The Traverse. I saw no fewer than 6 of their shows but it should be pointed out that these threw up a wide mix of collaborators; not least my own beloved Lyceum who produced a high octane multi-character, three-hander called Wondrous Flitting which had many amusing moments and a very fine performance by Molly Inness in particular.
But their collaborations also included the NToS, Grid Iron and Blue Mouth Inc; all of which I enjoyed.
I’m desperately sorry that I missed Mission Drift which was, I suspect, the pick of the bunch but the following all inspired me;
The Strange Undoing of Prudentia Hart shows what a collossus of Scottish writing David Greig is; this site specific show, set in the nearby Ghillie Dhu pub, had both Jeana and I in stitches and full of awe at a quite remarkeable ensemble performance. Outstanding.
The second site specific show I saw was What Remains. Set in the Anatomy School of Edinburgh University, and produced by Grid Iron it was the nearest one gets to outright horror on stage. Driven remarkably by its writer, David Paul Jones, it begins with a highly intense (scary actually) twenty minute opening movement from a Concerto for piano written and performed by the aforementioned Jones. It was electric. What follows is the story of Jones’ descent into madness. Part Bella Lugosi, part Anthony Hegarty, part Luis Bunuel, part Hammer House of Horror this show absolutely blew me away and at one point a certain plot devise pretty much made me let go of my bowels. Jones is simply wonderful as he acts sings and plays the piano in a one man tour de force.
My third Traverse pick is Dance Marathon. Again Jeana and I attended and this was a joy from start to finish. Following the recent trend, it too is site specific and the action took place in The Lyceum’s rehearsal studios in which the audience IS the cast and we dance for four hours (we went to a super long performance on the show’s last night). Pouring with sweat at the denoument in which Jeana and I failed to be crowned King and Queen of the dancefloor in a dance, poetry, song and video smorgasbrod of excellent entertainment I was approached by Bluemouth’s producer who said she’d been watching me all night and declared me “Awesome and relentless”. My proudest moment on this year’s Fringe.
Lastly, Marc Almond’s performance in Ten Plagues was awesome. Very moving.
My other notable show this year was Berkoff’s Oedipus at The Pleasance which was brilliant. The Greek Chorus of mainly old and middle aged men stole the show in a way choruses rarely do. It was a little let down by the casting of Anita Dobson as Oedipus’ object of affection but it was not enough to stop tis being a top class show.
I saw FORK’s amusing Pink Noise but it fell short of completely convincing me that every sound emanating from this Finnish a Capella group was indeed man made.
All things considered though my personal Fringe First goes to Dance Marathon for the most invigorating (physically as much as intellectually) four hours I’ve spent in a theatre.
Filed under: Arts, business, creativity, life | Tags: apple mac, apple resignation, IT, microsoft v apple, steve jobs, steve jobs resignation, technology, the apple philosophy
Of course I do not know the man or know anyone who knows the man.
This man has changed the world in good ways.
I FEEL like I know him.
When I started my company I had to decide between good and evil. I chose good, We ended up with a 50+ Mac network.
When I started working from home I had to choose between good and evil. I chose good.
I write now on good.
I try to write my blog from time to time on the enemy’s machines.
It ends in tears.
The letter below is very sad but noble.
I suspect it means he will not be with us for long.
Steve Jobs; I salute you.
You are a complete and utter fucking legend. Bill Gates envies you.
This is his resignation letter today.
I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.
I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.
As far as my successor goes, I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple.
I believe Apple’s brightest and most innovative days are ahead of it. And I look forward to watching and contributing to its success in a new role.
I have made some of the best friends of my life at Apple, and I thank you all for the many years of being able to work alongside you.
Filed under: advertising, Arts, business, creativity, humour, life, Scotland, theatre | Tags: advertising, edinburgh festival fringe, street ad, The fringe
Filed under: family | Tags: 20 years old, ageing, amy gorman, no longer a teenager
My impending 50th Birthday doesn’t make me feel so old. After all I’m 49 now.
But today my eldest daughter turned 20.
Now that DOES make me feel old.
Filed under: Arts, creativity, life, motors | Tags: Chris Burden, installation art, la, LA art, LA freeways, LA traffic, LA traffic jams, metropolis II
This is a beautiful piece of Installation art by LA artist Chris Burden. I absolutely adore it.
It’s surreal, beautiful, captivating and mesmerising.
I wish I could go see it in real life. Fall 2011 it opens in LA. Go see.
Filed under: advertising, Arts, creativity | Tags: australia, STA Travel ads, travel
Shot in 44 days in 11 Countries.
But I rather admire it.
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: fct, forth childrens theatre, Iain MacDonald, The Chess game
I’ve spoken little on this blog (but a lot on FCT’s) about the show the young people’s theatre that I chair is putting on in the Fringe this week. However I’d like to redress that now. It finishes on Saturday night and unfortunately we have tickets left.
It’s a little known show; unknown would be a better word but we are privileged indeed to have its creator (Iain MacDonald from Greenfaulds High School in Cumbernauld) as our musical director. Alongside him are Vic Laing as director, Kirsty Shaw as his assistat (at a mere 16 years of age) and Katy Barry as our voice coach.
It has been a special week as audience member after audience member have gasped at the professionalism of the show, the quality of the production and the sheer exuberance and ability of the cast allied to outstanding and memorable songs.
Well done everyone on stage and off for the power of work you have put in and the quality of the work that has emerged.
Here’s what the Evening News (respected critic Thom Dibdin) had to say…
A JAZZY score and light-hearted banter underpin the strong and serious message of FCT’s well-judged musical offering for the Fringe.
Originally produced by the company in 1985, The Chess Game is written by their musical director Iain MacDonald. It is both a timely piece of entertainment and one which perfectly weighted for its young performers.
A collection of anonymous, white and black-clad figures emerge out of darkness. Over the musical they form up into a hierarchy, with individuals taking the roles of the chess pieces, and then the pieces take on the aggressive qualities of the game of chess, to a brilliantly twisted finale.
The older members of the cast, such as Rebecca Gilhooley as the White Queen, and the quartet of girls as the media-savvy Knights, put in strong and subtle performances.
The younger members shine too. Hayley Scott and Liam Thomson as the lead pawns trade on their strengths – hers in her voice, his in his acting – with great, heartfelt performances.
Which is what makes this production so entrancing. It entices the performers out of their comfort zones – but not so far as to leave them exposed – with strong music and great rhythms that are complex in structure, but satisfying to listen to.
Run ends Saturday
Please let me know if you would like tickets.
Filed under: Arts, family, creativity | Tags: edinburgh festival fringe, edinburgh fringe, fct, forth childrens theatre, rain, Royal mile stages, The Chess game, The fringe, Thom Dibdin, Virgin Money Royal mile event
Well, we’re three nights into our run with OK sized audiences ; good for an unknown show. But we need to up the ante on that if we are to cover our costs. So that starts at 1.50 when we preform on the Lower Stage on The Royal Mile.
It’s an open air event and this is the scene from my window…
But we will carry on regardless with 39 kids and a battery operated generator. Should be fun…
After that, a bit of flyering and back for a Barbeque at base.
The first review of the show has come in from Thom Dibdin. He was very complimentary ad even used a couple of my pictures.
Apps, Happiness, Casablanca and The Chess Game
When Two Queens Go to War… Rebecca Gilhooley and Julia Carstairs in FCT’s The Chess Game. Photo © Mark Gorman
By Thom Dibdin
Start it up and lets go! Day One of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe dawned bright and clear. No monsoon, no rain, just a crisp morning with light wind and sunny skies.
A perfect day for a play called Happiness, it would seem, at a sparkling new venue to boot: The Playhouse at Hawke and Hunter Green Room. Good timing too, for the Tron Theatre’s revival of Casablanca, the Gin Joint Cut – which arrives in Edinburgh with a slew of four and five star reviews under its belt. And to round off the day, a visit to the first Edinburgh Local Hero, with the fabby FCT’s The Chess Game, at Inverleith.
The Cast of The Chess Game, by FCT. Photo © Mark Gorman
Finally the Local Heroes, Forth Children’s Theatre. I always enjoy reviewing their productions but was slightly concerned to be there on first night of The Chess Game, particularly when the company has just said good-bye to a very successful generation of young performers.
No worries, though, The Chess Game was excellent. Not perfect yet, but the voices will mature and grow in confidence over the years, as will the acting. There are several in the company who need to learn to speak up and out, as the mumbled spoken lines into their boots. Director Vic Laing could also have improved some of the blocking. He left several of the more diminutive members of the company stuck out of sight at the back in big ensemble numbers and tableaux which should have given everyone a chance to shine.
That said, the young company tackled this piece about war, redemption and taking responsibility with real maturity. There are several very problematic moments which they made pass by with a natural fluidity to their pacing. Their musical performances pushed right to the edge of their abilities too – well beyond their comfort zones – and they made the tricky arrangements sound simple.
Of course they do have some cracking support, and those responsible for the wardrobe did an excellent job. The live band were crisp and supportive under the leadership of Iain MacDonald who wrote the words, music and lyrics of the show – which FCT first performed back in 1984. A thought-provoking treat. And I found myself humming the tunes on the way home.
So, come along to our venue…at Inverleith Church Hall, Ferry Road (Top of Granton Road), from August 5th – 13th at 7.30 with matinees on Saturday 6th and 13th at 2.30 pm.
Tickets are priced £12 (£10 conc). All tickets are £8 on Sat 6th Matinee.
Call the FCT Ticket Hotline to place your order on 07794 144372.
Ria is distraught.
Her idea of doing a degree in Dentistry has been swept away. Although she did great with 4 Highers including crash Chemistry, but her English Higher evaded her.
In some ways this doesn’t surprise me because her English teacher was an absolute moron. She refused to put study classes in. Constantly failed to mark homework, lost half the class’ portfolios. In short she was not fit for purpose. I complained again and again to the school about her and they acknowledged my point but to no avail.
Tom, by stark contrast, is cock a hoop having passed his two Highers and Three Int Two’s. He had a different teacher for English but he cannot believe he passed his PE Higher because, guess what, the teachers sucked. And guess what. I complained about them too.
For all the others that dedicated themselves to their profession. I thank and applaud you.
It’s bad enough waiting to find out how your child has done in their Highers. But waiting for two of them. That’s horrific.