Archive for the 'Michael Ball' Category

In which theatre turns out to have some use. Oh, and the Olivier Awards have happened.

Monday 10 March 2008

The Whingers respectfully draw your attention to this article in The Guardian about Minnesota:

More than 100 bars across the state have started holding “theatre nights” in which patrons are encouraged to dress up in period costume and project their voices, playbills are pinned on the walls, and bar paraphernalia makes up the props.

The bars are seeking to bypass a smoking ban introduced last October by exploiting a loophole that allows cigarettes to be puffed in theatrical productions.

What began as an idea by a Minnesota lawyer, Mark Benjamin, to get round what he saw as an unjustified prohibition has snowballed into a state-wide protest. Bars have taken to calling their theatre nights “Before the Ban”, which allows them to claim that their customers are in character playing themselves before the October injunction came down.


One the subject of the Olivier Awards…

The Whingers have nothing to say. They are naturally delighted for Leanne (right) and Michael and Tracie et al but this is a vacuous, self-congratulatory, irrelevant, arbitrary set of awards that the Whingers refuse to recognise, let alone condone.

Until such time as they receive an invitation to the ceremony.

Guess who we saw today?

Sunday 18 November 2007

So, anyway, there we were having a quiet drink with Mel Brooks and Roger Bart when who should drop into the bar but Baz Bamigboye, the Daily Mail’s chief show-business reporter. Imagine the Whingers’ excitement. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – Hairspray the musical, Shaftesbury Theatre, London

Thursday 18 October 2007

West End Whingers Hairspray logoPhil had been waiting a long time for this. Not because the Whingers are fans of the original John Waters film (although they are), nor because they enjoyed the new film version of the musical (although they did), nor even because the Broadway production with Harvey Fierstein [CLUNK] delighted them so much four years ago.

No, it’s a much longer story than that. Andrew – in a peculiar and rate act of largesse – was very quick off the mark many months ago to do his biggest block booking yet: 19 tickets (which Andrew considers a “round number” but Phil thinks it was intended to be 20 but that Andrew had one of his Russ Conway moments and ran out of fingers to count on).

Whatever. It was undoubtedly the single most complicated feat of Whinger logistics ever.

And Phil, of course, just couldn’t wait for the big night.

So that he could witness Andrew’s efforts go all pear-shaped and end in tears.

Read the rest of this entry »

Michael Ball: from zero to hero

Friday 24 August 2007

He may offer a very nice line in cork-backed coasters (right) and car tax disc holders but otherwise we have to say that the West End Whingers have never really got the point of Michael Ball.

We’re not against him, particularly, it’s just that we’re not really for him either which has left us in an unusually neutral position over him being cast as Edna Turnblad in Hairspray.

But now that we know that he is a man who really doesn’t know or care which side his bread is buttered and is more than happy to bite the hand that feeds him, we’re rather warming to the man. Read the rest of this entry »

John Waters, Hairspray, Edna Turnblad and so on

Saturday 18 August 2007

Andrew has been desperate to know what John Waters thinks of the casting of Michael Ball as Edna Turnblad in the forthcoming London production of Hairspray.

But his phone calls having been ignored he was forced to drop in to the NFT (the Whingers will refuse to called it the BFI Southbank even until their dying days) last night avec entourage to ambush Waters as he took part in an “in conversation” plus a preview of his new film This Filthy World (confusingly billed as part of “The Stanley Kubrick Masterclass series” whatever that is). Read the rest of this entry »

Michael Ball’s Beard

Saturday 23 June 2007

Michael Ball’s beardThe Whingers often think about Hair.

Not the iconic musical of the sixties but the stuff that is prone to sprout from the head and face and other places the Whingers are too polite to mention (nose and ears in Andrew’s case).

But actor/singer Michael Ball has been seen out and about recently – including at the opening of The Drowsy Chaperone and presenting This Morning (right) – sporting a glorious beard.

Apparently he’s grown a full set for the upcoming ENO production of Kismet thus keeping costs down for the wig department. But the Whingers feel that hair if not just on his chin, must be very much on Mr Ball’s mind at the moment. Read the rest of this entry »

Star and their Websites 2

Monday 4 June 2007

Due to the phenomenal interest in the first Stars and their Websites, it’s back by popular demand.bigshewliza.jpg

The West End Whingers have been trawling the Internet purely for your edification:

Who’d have thought Liza Minnelli would have her own site? Well the Whingers would actually. Lots of merchandise in the Liza Store and “PLEASE know how much I love and appreciate YOU” (sic), especially if you keep spending. Read the rest of this entry »