As we drank what became our ritual drink at the end of the day in the Angel pub, we reflected: Community, fellowship, creativity, laughter, stimulus. All these elements we’d missed these last few years of COVID, which gave their manifestation here all the more intense. Michael and I had spent the weekend with Kevin, a pleasure, moving around our small market town, to see creative writing, directing, acting, in the form of INK. Well done Julia Sowerbutts. Magnificent festival, ubiquitous publicity – Ukrainian colours.
Starting with the Pear Tree commissioned ‘You’ll be fine’, a brilliant dialogue between a mother and her daughter then her husband finally all 3, as she and they came to terms with her terminal cancer diagnosis. The daughter, full of her own life, unhearing or seeing her mother started the play,
We plan our route in between venues spread throughout the town. Starting at the Museum Theatre in the Railway station with the
– Signalman (fate, Dickensian rational v spiritual)
On to Kings Theatre
– Inside Alan (Titchmarsh) a stalker seeking kindness (death of parents became the root)
– Who needs Stephen King (couple, one wheel chair bound and bitter, switching too swiftly between kind and harsh)
– Little Fish – Pregnant with her little fish, unexpected turning of coherisve control. One of the best in the festival.
– INKcredibles 7 back to back. Two memorable: The Spanish cardigan and East European Cleaner
– Radio play The Brummie Illiad – the gods go to war. Achilles bright yellow, dark glasses and brilliant, they all were Oooo ahhhh. Fuck you. No Mercy.
– Helen Aikinson Wood in conversation with Peter Fincham. Unlike the next conversation, Peter was Oxbridge and connected. However, also humble. Those moments – in his case base guitar. ‘Do you play base guitar’ he was asked as he was leaving the room. So he became involved in Footlights, then Talk Back with Griff Reece Jones and Mell Smith.
To the Angel Theatre for
– Julietes ‘Daddy’s Girl’. Excellent. Mr Haddock, I’ve got to leave now to attend to Tarquin my cat’.
– Indignas – a future scenario of assisted suicide as main stream. Link up with Ikea for coffin.
- White Swan Theatre – Two States. Ben brilliant, unexpected sex under the dovet. The switch moment between love and difference. Israel and Palestine.
– Raghead – the scarfed woman meeting the New York Firefighter in a cafe
- The Brummie Iliad – again
- Luke Wright the Remains of Logan – 40 minutes of energetic ballad of our time. Brexit and Borris wallpaper to a relationship.
- Tracy McLeod in conversation with John Morton. Not oxbridge, but after giving up teaching in bed sit with rejection letters, he was seen, taken up and W2, 2012, and now 10%. People rarely say what they mean.
- Finally Simon’s script reading Numbers. Hilarious, excellent, and we had a drink with him and Jo afterwards.