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I headed to Suffolk last weekend. Not to visit friends, not to swim in the sea and not even to hang out in a beach hut. No, I went to attend a Theatre Festival of all things – The High Tide Festival, if you will.

We’ve all heard of the Edinburgh Festival, but Suffolk? It hardly seems to be the theatrical epicentre of the UK. But hang on a minute, let’s not dismiss Suffolk too quickly – because its annual High Tide festival has got everyone talking.

Upon arrival at the festival – in the abyss of East Anglia, I met up with my parents. My mother was buoyant with enthusiasm, my father a little sceptical, (he’s not much of a thesp.) Without even a moment to gather ourselves, we were whisked into an auditorium to watch the preview of a new play by Beth Steel: ‘Ditch.’

It was midday, the sunshine was blazing outside, and I was sitting with my parents watching an apocalyptic play in Suffolk. It’s not the most normal way to spend your Saturday.

When the drama concluded, we left the theatre a little shakily, and gathered in the main foyer. Just at that moment, my eyes fell upon a very sweet, cheeky looking Jack Russell. I bounded up to the mutt and gave it a good scratch. I then noticed the dog owner’s eccentric shoes.

My eyes ran past the dandy-esque brogues, up a pair of emerald green courdoroy trousers, up a flamboyantly striped chemise until they settled upon the face of none other than Kevin Spacey. Yes, the Hollywood filmstar of American Beauty acclaim was staring down at me as I was scratching his dog’s belly.

I know it’s desperately uncool to be star-strck , but I could not help but be blown away by the fact that in this tiny insignificant village I was patting Kevin Spacey’s dog. Un-bloody-belieavable!

As the day continued, and we watched more performances, I bumped into Kevin at every turn. Every play I went to see, he was there;  every time I sat in the cafe, he was there; every time I went outside – he was there.

Kevin and I are definitely friends now.

Moral of the story: Don’t underestimate Suffolk, you never know who’s dog you might bump into.


One of my office’s accounts is with the Arts Theatre in Leicester Square. This small, musty venue has none of the sparkling glamour of other West End theatres, but in my humble opinion, it’s a hidden gem.

For the past few months, the Arts Theatre has been running a wildly successful ‘Late Night’ programme. When the innocent performances finish at ten, the raunchier acts hit the stage. In the second week of my internship I naively agreed to see one of these late night shows. Nothing could have prepared me for the evening that lay ahead.

I suppose the show’s title should have given it all away. “Naked Boys Singing” does not need much explanation. The musical takes the form of 16 songs performed by a troupe of jobless actors auditiong for the ‘naked’ event we’re about to see. The lyrics are crude, the language is blue, and the nakedness leaves little to the imagination. The (very) gay humour never lets up with songs entitled “The bliss of a Bris” and “Perky Little Porn Star.”

The audience was a bizarre combination of aging gays, Japanese tourists and glamorous Russians. The night was quite literally hysterical. It may be outrageous, but if the spectator cares to look beyond the blatant nakedness, then they are sure to enjoy a handful of catchy songs and some genuine acting talent.

In direct contradiction to the self-deprecating, opening song title, this really isn’t all about ‘Gratuitous Nudity’.

For the past three months I’ve been filling my days with yet another internship.  I’m happy to say that this latest stint of unpaid labour, has been anything but dull. In previous offices, I’ve worked in silence and always kept my head down, but in my current place of work, voices are raised, phones are slammed and coarse language prevails!

I’ve witnessed hysterical laughter, hysterical tears, fierce bitching and silent treatment. From what I’ve gathered, every stereotype about working in “The Arts” is true. It really is a world of airy kisses, boozy lunches, hot tempers and shameless self promotion. But for every dollop of high pitched emotion, there is an equal portion of love and respect. I think it’s just the nature of working in theatre – these thespian type don’t like to hold back.

One bonus of the whole experience has been all the freebie trips to the theatre. I’ve been lucky enough to see a handful of shows, some funny, some sad and some plain awful, but it certainly is intriguing to see what appeals to the British public. People may claim that there is nothing that they want to see at the theatre, but I can confindently say there is something for everyone!