Yesterday was the start of a week of chaos. Both Daughter of Mine and I are in productions this week – Daughter in a dance show and me in The Memory of Water – involving us both travelling in different directions to different towns at different times. On top of all the usual things – you know, work, other after-school clubs, shopping, the usual. Aaargghhh!
The Memory of Water opened last night to a full house, and has been very well received from audience members thus far. I hadn’t realised though until I got to the theatre last night, that Daughter of Mine’s Headmistress and three other staff members would be in the audience on opening night. Now, I know from first hand experience that this Headmistress is no prude – given that she, I and 10 girls recently witnessed a professional dance company’s production featuring male nudity and simulated masturbation – however, I was just a little nervous last night thinking, oh, I say that word, and that one; and spend the best part of 32 pages in bed; and take my clothes off. Twice.
No need to worry though. I happened to pop into school this morning, to see Son of Mine in an assembly about the rain forest – his line was about one of the things to take with you when planning a trip to Brazil: “Sturdy Walking Boots” – good on you, lad. Headmistress made a bee line for me after the assembly to say how much she enjoyed the play, and how she wouldn’t be able to look at me in the same way again.
That’ll make the next school event fun then.
“Don’t think about it” – the title of the Rambert Dance Company’s second dance in yesterday’s programme at the Theatre Royal – was exactly what I had to try not to do on the train home accompanied by ten 9-10 year old girls and a headmistress.
Despite it being my favourite dance in the programme for its perceptive take on the culture of a lad’s night out, it was not really appropriate for this impressionable age group. The Headmistress and I were suitably embarrassed, the girls understood more than they were letting on, two ladies in front of us didn’t come back after the interval, and the theatre manager was hugely apologetic and confessed that this piece had been put in the afternoon’s performance at short notice.
The programme describes it as “a world of mates, lads and comrades seeking release through movement… [and] sexual games” – the audience was not disappointed…
The Sound of Music. I have only been in this show once – as a nun, not one of the coveted principal roles – or even as one of the children’s parts that I auditioned for way back in, I think, 1983. (I have subsequently spent rather a lot of time in a habit, but that’s a another story… )
Whatever anyone else says about the show (or indeed the film version), I rather like it. It’s not my favourite musical (but then that changes on a regular basis), but I still like it. As I like all musicals really. When I was young, my Nana used to tell me how she met my Grandfather, “Pops”, at the original London production of Oklahoma!, so I couldn’t not have a certain fondness for Rodgers and Hammerstein. I do go through phases of preferring serious and dramatic; then the fluffy, Broadway boy-meets-girl variety followed by quirky, small-cast stuff – it just depends what I’ve just seen, what I’m currently listening to, and often of course, the current production I’m involved with.
I’m off to the Theatre Royal in Brighton after lunch, to see the Rambert Dance Company’s Comedy of Change Tour 2010. I haven’t seen them perform live since I did my Dance ‘O’ level (yes, I am that old!), so I shall probably come back wanting to take up professional dance.