Posts Tagged ‘Stephen Wight’

Review – The Ladykillers, Gielgud Theatre

Wednesday 7 December 2011

Best to sidestep this intro if you find it too distressing to discover (or have no interest in and why would you?) what goes on in a Whinger’s mystifying unconscious.

People who insist on relating their dreams are about as enthralling as those who share their travel nightmares. But occasionally a Whinger will seek to inflict a condensed version of a previous night’s fancies on the other in the interests of seeking insight, analysis or at least a dribble of interest.

The last one Phil bestowed on Andrew went thus: “I was re-recording my album in a hotel room and Sir Bob Geldof asked if he could come and watch. I couldn’t sing, I couldn’t remember the words and the reel-to-reel tape recorder got tangled up and was spewing out tape all over the room. Bob was very nice about it.” Mmmm.

An article in the programme for The Ladykillers reveals the QI origins of the classic 1955 Ealing comedy. William Rose came up with the idea “five criminals were living in a little house with a charming little old lady” in a dream, woke up, told the entire plot and concept to his wife and promptly fell back to sleep. His wife was so struck by the idea that she stayed awake all night and asked him if he could remember it in the morning. He remembered nothing but went on to write the original screenplay from her retelling. How easily The Ladykillers might never have existed.

The next time Andrew nods off in a theatre Phil intends to interrogate him post-slumber to see if he has come up with such a brilliant conceit. What are the chances? 

The Ladykillers now comes to the Gielgud Theatre with what can only be described by us as a dream cast in a version by Father Ted and The IT Crowd writer Graham Lineham. Expectations were absurdly high. Read the rest of this entry »

Review – The Habit of Art by Alan Bennett, National Theatre

Thursday 12 November 2009

The Habit of ArtPoetry not really being his thing, Phil had never, to his knowledge, read any W H Auden. Until last night, that is, when he read one of the celebrated poet’s works in the programme for Alan Bennett‘s new play the The Habit of Art. He’s none the wiser about the poem, poetry or Auden.

Andrew, on the other hand, is far more literary having delivered a triumphant yet moving rendition of Colonel Fazackerley Butterworth-Toast as a precocious eight year old to a presumably stunned audience at the Cheltenham Festival of Performing Arts.

Phil’s closest brush with poetry was at the National Gallery’s Sitwell exhibition when he was nearly mown down by Sir Stephen Spender’s wheelchair shortly after which in the gallery’s shop he got the chance to marvel at Lady Spender’s splendid ignorance of the logistics involved in writing a cheque. He did however, once appear in a school production of Benjamin Britten‘s Noye’s Fludde. Playing a wave. And he can still even sing Kyrie Eleison. And if you ask him very nicely he won’t.

All of which preamble brings the Whingers to their Monday night evening out at a preview of the most eagerly anticipated theatrical event of the year: the new Alan Bennett at the National Theatre. Read the rest of this entry »