Mild Spooks Series 7 Episode 7 Spoiler within...
Lord Piers Beckley has a play on, at The Lion & Unicorn Theatre in Kentish Town - his adaptation of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. Get your tickets here. I went along to see it on press night, and enjoyed both the performance and Piers' delight in seeing his script come alive thanks to some splendid acting.
Now, I'm not much of a theatre guy. For some reason, I prefer a screen between me and actors acting. Still, the Lion & Unicorn is a really cool li'l theatre above a nice big pub, and Piers has done a bang-up job on the classic festive tale, aided by some really creative work by director Ray Shell. Here's Piers with the show's main man, Scrooge himself, Edward Kingham:
And with Mr Bob Cratchit, Joe Shefer:
And again, reacting to producer George Sallis saying, "Christ, I've just realised - we forgot the third ghost!"
For me, it was a splendidly Christmassy evening in a fairly long run of Christmassy evenings. The night before, I attended writer Jay Slater and director Sean Hogan's Christmas drinks in central London, where it was great to catch up with old faces and meet some new ones. Here I am with Psychotronic Tony and an utterly sober Slater...
And with The Zombie Diaries' lovely actress Sophia Ellis:
Ooh, and TV's James Moran was there! In this picture, the gentleman on the left is enquiring why there was any need for Harry Pearce to be arrested by a full SWAT team in Lord James' Spooks episode. Seconds later, the irate scribe hoisted the poor inquisitive knave towards the ceiling and energetically nailed him there, shrieking, "That'll teach you, you fucknut!".
I thought I'd managed to navigate my way through the evening without getting too drunk. A couple of days later, though, I realised that this was not the case. I received an e-mail from a writer who I met for the first time on the night, and remembered having a nice chat with. He ended his otherwise breezy e-mail with: "Before I sign off, here's a networking tip: get to know someone for more than 60 seconds before giving them, however well-intended, the epithet 'lumbering lummox'."
It's a fair point, well made. Still, not all my evenings have been purely booze-fuelled and futile - the other night I attended a meeting thrown by the good people of Radio 4 sketch-show Recorded For Training Purposes. A little while back, they had an open call for sketch submissions, and I threw a couple their way. Joyously, I was one of 15-or-so writers out of 1500 whose work they liked enough to invite to this meeting. It was a very positive get-together, which gave us all plenty of praise, handy tips and honest advice, with the promise of paid work in the New Year. Good stuff.
I'll probably write more about this promising development, and any updates, on the other side of Christmas. So, if I don't shriek to you again beforehand, have the most insanely delightful yuletide experience available to humanity. Good day.