Came back yesterday for a meeting with the Globe and to meet this musical theatre composer.
Then today had a character session with Gwennie, one of the Stc performers, picked up Sam & Lorens costumes for the launch party on Monday and now up in Highgate for an Stc meeting with the producers and then another Flower Man. Laura Wade is in tonight – hope she likes my adaptation.
We had a wonderful first night last night. We had an even more wonderful second night tonight. I had a lovely lunch with Colin, Artistic Director of the Theatre Royal, a lovely afternoon doing text work with Sam on Stc, a lovely phone call from my agent setting up a meeting for tomorrow with a New York composer I might write a musical with, and then a lovely dinner with Colin and the rest of the team at the theatre (in Bury they have a dinner option to eat in the cafe before the show). Lovely.
Also Bury is very beautiful. Sam and I sat in the old ruins of the abbey to do our text work, in the sunshine. And then he bought me an ice cream. Pistachio. A good day.
Yesterday was a bit full on, went to Kate’s studio for a costume fitting with the wonderful Tim Fitzhigham who plays John Tradescant in Stc, then we ambled along to the Southbank Centre – Kate’s studio is in Lambeth – wandering along the Thames and chatting about character is a very nice way to get back into the world, although also pretty madly busy & frenetic. Then met Loren and a potential producer for lunch to discuss the future of Points of Light. All exciting and evolving daily. It’s going to be a very different show now that It’s under the banner of Loren’s company Curious Eye rather than metta, and a great challenge for me.
Then set off to Stratford for the press night of the RSC’s Merchant of Venice. Amazing, though very Rupert Goold (who directed it). I’ve befriended a theatre critic so I got a lift there with her and another critic, which was a wonderful insight into their lives. Being a critic is a pretty thankless task I realised as we sat in the car until half eleven while they were frantically typing by the light of a nearby lamp post to file their copy as soon as possible so that it could be published in today’s papers.
Meanwhile I had thought I’d do some preparatory work on the Stc script but I wasn’t.in the mood so I started a short story instead – just finishing it off now. Rather enjoying this new found strand of my career as a writer!
We’re having a dinner party tonight – 9 people – that’s quite a lot. I’m not quite well enough but it’s been in the diary for ages, and I’ve had all day to rest and lay the table in advance and chop the onions. Also having coffee with an actress who wrote to me, and then before dinner a quick animation meeting with Jack for STC (he’s one of the dinner guests) so it’s just as well I’ve done everything in advance.
The animation/illustration is coming on very well – it’s all very exciting. And here as promised is a pic of what Kate has been working on (it’s a massive train for a dress, and it’s also a symbol of the muddy banks of the Thames). Maybe I should put one of Jack’s illustrations up too…
Just pootling along trying to gently catch up. Did another radio interview for Flower Man this afternoon – for BBC Radio Hereford & Worcester and tonight am off to the Young Vic to run another Director/Designer workshop, but I think Will is going to take the lead so I can just sit quietly in the corner. And it’s on costume so Kate Lane is coming in to help facilitate it as well. In the mean time she is busy beavering away on the STC costumes – had one fitting at the weekend, and hopefully will have some more this week as well, it’s all coming along beautifully (pictures to follow). She’s such an artist.
I rather enjoy radio interviews, I’ve decided, because you can just sit around in a dressing gown and nobody knows…except of course the few people who read this blog.
Yesterday was equally gentle – just working from home and then dinner and a planning meeting at Loren’s for the launch party (May 30th) of her new theatre company Curious Eye. Will and I are ‘Associate Artists’.
Been ill. Resting in the West Country and sporadically checking in with the West Country leg of the tour. Going well. Don’t really want to go back to London…maybe we should just stay here and become Wiltshire’s answer to Kneehigh.
Slowly, very slowly having to get back on the email train. Hmmm.
Today Will & I are running a day long workshop at the Young Vic for directors and designers. Going well so far – we’ve sent them off in pairs round the building to make some short films as a way of exploring visual storytelling.
Also juggling various phone interviews for What’s on Stage and BBC Wiltshire – all very exciting though a bit nervewracking too – must at least endeavour to speak in full sentences. Err…
Sometimes it’s not all sweetness and light. Ah well. In the spirit of Devoted & Disgruntled everything that happens is the only thing that could have.
And I had a great meeting with our STC producer Leo and a very fun interview in Cambridge – I might be directing another G&S at the Arts Theatre in the autumn. I’d inadvertently dressed slightly like a pirate in stripes and my brown boots, which was apt as the show is Pirates of Penzance.
But lots of tricky negotiations going on. Hmmm. This is the year of amazing, it’s true, and also a year of great learning. And lightened somewhat by the lovely dinner of beans on toast (almost as good as chips, I think) that Will has just made for me – and dinner before 11pm – that’s an improvement.
Oh and I did manage to write a play last night. It is only 7 pages long, and it may be awful. But it is my first play.
The show went wonderfully well last night, and everyone at the Playhouse seemed to like it, so that’s good. Then had a meeting with them this morning about co-producing some shows with us next year – all very exciting, and not a little inspiring. Then we swung by the Story Museum which will open in 2014 and is being realised by the wonderful Tish Francis, who used to run the Playhouse. An incredibly inspiring place that will be a museum, gallery, cafe, bookshop, performance space and a place to dream. As they put it – opening windows into other worlds. Magic. Let’s go tell some stories there.
Now on the train back to London. And an afternoon of admin and e-mail. But I’m going to write a play some time this week – just a ten minute one – so maybe I’ll squeeze that in too, this evening. It’s going to involve a piano, that’s all I know so far.