Saturday, 27 June 2015

July 6th

Regrettably Indhu Rubasingham can't give us a talk on 6th July after all.  But as one door closes another opens and we shall be using Monday 6th July for:

1 Casting and auditioning for the five shortlisted plays for our Danger Competition which will be performed and judged on the following Monday (13th July)

2 If time allows, the script in hand performance of a late entry for the Women Behaving Badly competition.
I don't think we've ever done public auditions before. Should be a bit like Britain's Got Talent.

Be there. at 7. Should be an interesting evening.

Let Me Explain

Many years ago I read a book of theology called Let Me Explain. Well if it's good enough for Teillhard de Chardin it is good enough for Peter Mckelvey. Let him explain:

"LET ME EXPLAIN....Let me explain...Let me explain.....The play is an affection re-visiting of an old genre.  Many years ago, J.B.Priestly lamented the passing of the 'story' in the theatre. But he added, 'the story will return.'    It hasn't yet.   At least not in the West End, or in any of the more pretentious venues.   But it has here, affectionately and I hope amusingly and exclusively for P.P. What's it about?   It's about to be read next Monday.  Do come along".  

Do. 7.30 at the North London Tavern>

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Danger Competition Shortlist

We had nearly 250 entries from across the world. These are the final five that will be read at the final on July 13th:



Ifs and Buts

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Congratulations to them and commiserations to everyone else. Thanks for joining in and please come along.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Just Words

Monday June 21 brings us a cracking new play by Richard Woulfe. I can say this with some authority because I have actually read it.

"Why did Ben Jonson and Robert Cecil meet so often?  Jonson, the satirical playwright, and Cecil, the King’s Secretary of State?

1606 saw first performances of Volpone, Jonson’s great comedy. But he still did not achieve financial independence.  He continued to write masques at court, often commissioned by Cecil.  In an age when writers needed a patron, Jonson was fighting for a greater degree of artistic autonomy".

7.30 at the North London Tavern.

Thursday, 11 June 2015

I'm Dead, Get Me Out Of Here

June 15th brings us a radio play by Janice Day and Martyn Eggington:

"Dave, an unfulfilled jobbing musician, doesn't like being dead.  Heaven is just awful, with its rules and regulations and noise abatement policy.  He befriends ex-careworker Caitlin ("ex" on account of the fact that she too is dead), and engages her in trying to commit a crime so heinous that they will be immediately relegated to Hell, which sounds a damned sight  better than Heaven.

However, it's quite difficult to commit a crime in Heaven: Health and Safety is rife. There's also no property to steal and murder is a non-starter so......."

7.30 at the North London Tavern

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Women Behaving Badly - the review

What a night it was; it really was, such a night!  Every seat taken for the script in hand performance of 10 mini-plays on the theme WOMEN BEHAVING BADLY.  The authors were perverse as ever. Instead of bawdy exchanges between binge-drinkers we had mostly needle-sharp bitching, greed and bigotry. Entertaining though. There were two early fallers, LIFE’S IMPENDING CHANGE by Judy Acton and LEOPARD’S SPOTS by Dimitry Devriani.  In each case we were treated to what appeared to be Act 2 of a longer work and we found ourselves wondering what had happened in the missing Act 1. In each case the reading over-ran the 10 minute limit by a considerable margin.

Of the rest MENAGE A TROIS by Alex Barr scored 116: it concerned two women fighting over the husband of one [to be played on stage by a realistic store dummy unaware of the wife’s bit on the side]. THE SWEETEST VICTORY by Ags Irwin, about murdering the Prime Minister with chocolate cake, scored 122 and CREED by Matilda Lovelace scored 123.  Her plot hinged on the choice of paint for a designer kitchen.  They were each witty plays by new members who had to learn the hard way that scripts do not fare well on an unrehearsed reading, script in hand, if they depend on props and set design.  Next time they will be in the top three.

In the upper half we had LOOKING AFTER MA DIXON (141 points), an unpleasant tale by Giles Armstrong about a hanging carried out in Arizona by a couple of horrible women.  The script was almost redeemed by fantastic cowboy accents from Phil Mison as the poker-playing hangman and Lynne O’Sullivan who was happy to stand in for him, so he could finish the game in the saloon bar (where else). In fourth place was Peter Vincent’s KISMET with 143 Points in which a newly dead woman (Lynne again) had her wish to return to earth for 3 minutes granted by Tony Diggle who couldn’t be bothered with her soul but had fun with her body.  In another part of the Tony Blair coffee lounge the newly dead Carrie Cohen awaited a visit by a young man whom she had invited to fix her hamster’s wheel, which was stuck. Oh yes?  The location of these bizarre events remained unclear but got some good laughs. In third place, with 159 points was Lynne O’Sullivan’s SHORT BREAK, a Dolce Vita play in which Silas missed his hot date with Sevda in apartment MADRAS by knocking on the door of apartment MUMBAI and disturbing Anthea and Phil Philmar in a terminal embrace.  Their Italian accents were so strong they almost needed sub-titles.

There was an interesting surprise in second place.  Peter Skyte, whose novice’s entry in an earlier competition fared miserably, threw together a very broad comedy in a butcher’s shop involving female customers who spoke in Malapropisms (Elizabeth Trueblood was particularly convincing) and the vicar’s daughter with Tourettes syndrome (Sevda again) and a benign John Morrison who acted as interpreter and purveyor of unmentionable parts of an elephant. Peter scored 164 points without giving his play a title.  Finally, in first place, was MULLERED by Debbie Maya (166 points) which gave us what we had been waiting for: a drunken chat show host, Denise O’Leary, slagging off her guests, Sevda, whom she accused of having legs in different postcodes, and Lynne, to the despair of Phil Philmar and his production team who occupied half the stage and much of the action.  A worthy winner.

Peter Thompson   10 June 2015
PS FINAL WARNING!!! Any future competitor whose emailed script is not exactly the same as the hard copy handed out on the day will be disqualified!

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Women Behaving Badly

We have our termly competition on Monday at 7.30 and the theme WOMEN BEHAVING BADLY has attracted a lot of interest and indeed entries. Five non-members joined in, including one in San Francisco, such is the efficacy of our publicity, and two of those subsequently applied for membership in order to be able to take part.  So we now have 10 compliant entries for Monday night and an 11th waiting in the wings. They are all cast up and ready to go. Come along and give your verdict!