Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Month: May 2007 (Page 2 of 5)

Help or hazzard?

I know I should shut up and be grateful. But it is so hard! … …No. I can’t. So we got a really good review in one of the dailies yesterday. Well, I think the reviewer liked the show. The problem is that the review is mostly incomprehensible. And inaccurate.

Firstly he gets the musicians wrong. Pitchie and Fuzzy, both well known musicians from bands and other stuff around Cape Town, are switched around and mis-identified. Now, I think that’s horrible. Then, I quote, “It is clear that director Megan Choritz didn’t interfere much with the staging, because the artists rarely move from their respective position (sic).” I mean, how lucky was I, as the director, to not have to interfere with the staging? I virtually had nothing to do, since I chose not to interfere with the staging!

Then comes my best and most incomprehensible part. “Weir has always appeared unafraid to shy away from a bit of camp, and his costume particularly communicates a certain degree of self-awareness as to the material he is covering.” Please. I need help here. What does any of this mean? I can’t even break it down. I am entirely bamboozled.

Like I said, I should be grateful. But boy it sticks in my throat.

let’s get Intimate

I went to my first Let’s Get Intimate last night. I have as mixed feelings about the concept as I do about the performances which were a mixed bag. So, how it works is on Sunday nights (at 1930) there is a kind of showcase/open mic session at the Intimate theatre. Kati, the ‘boss’ of The Intimate does a really good job of making the venue and bar and even outside look pretty and red and inviting. Last night was obviously not a good judge of how successful this is. It was freezing cold and coming down in buckets. I think the audience (most of whom came late) totalled about 14 and I think a lot of them were recycled performers.

Graham, Fuzzy and Pitchie performed two songs from SOHAR to start. I guess they are used to tiny audiences. Brendan Murray emceed the evening and he is cute and charming and sometimes even funny. Then was the turn of a stand-up comic (forgive me but I have NO recollection of his name, which is probably just as well) who did a dreary little set with a couple of slides. He had arrived late to set up and I thought he was irritating. I’m not that good with stand-up in general though. Next up was a cute singer/songwriter/pianist called Frieda. I have auditioned her before. She is very talented and has a beautiful voice. She needs some direction though. Her stuff is very complicated. Very Tawdry Amos.

Then there was a break. Then there was a guy called Stan who is one of the performers of Like Fire, Ilana Wetzler’s collection of male singer/songwriters who perform on Sunday nights in May at my favourite venue The Obz Cafe. He was ok. The magician didn’t pitch. Then Godfrey Johnson did three Brel numbers. I love Godfrey’s Brel. I am biased. I directed his show when he performed them and he does them just the way I like it. That was it. Oh, I did win the free VIDA E coffees for heckling the emcee.

The performers were lucky last night. They had me doing sound. That’s because I didn’t want anyone touching our mixing desk which is set up for SOHAR. They all sounded beautiful through Pitchie’s mics and our speakers, amps and desk.

So here’s the rub. Last night was a bit of a musical variety show. Which was a bit boring. I suppose the real challenge is to get a strong and contrasting line up every week. I have been slack. Kati has asked us to come and do some TheatreSports and I think we should and we haven’t yet.

Back in the old days Melinda Ferguson used to run ‘Theatre Voltaire’ up in Jozi on Sunday nights. First it happened at the Junction, a seedy downtown club (seedy and downtown were different in the very early 90’s) and then at the Coffee Society in Rockey Street. What was brilliant about Theatre Voltaire was the range of stuff that people came to show. Strippers, fan dancers, scenes from new plays, short films, stand-up, drag. There was always a huge audience who were very vocal about their likes and dislikes. We fought like cats for slots at Voltaire. A good response could determine a future for whatever you were doing. I performed the first ever ten minute version of The Rhino Woman at Theate Voltaire. It went on to become a brilliant one woman show that even had a sequel, The Return of the Rhino Woman.

So maybe I’m stuck in the past, and maybe I want thrings to be ‘like they used to’. But maybe it’s a different world out there. I guess people are not that interested in each other’s work anymore. None of the students on the Drama School campus have come to TheatreSports or SOHAR. They weren’t there last night. Where is everybody?

Sharks and Bulls – those kind of animals

Big Friendly is so depressed. He’s got a tummy ache. He is pacing. He is staying at home by himself tonight while I go to SOHAR. The sharks lost. In the dying moments of the game the Bulls scored. Big Friendly used the ugliest words to describe them. I must confess that I slept out my karaoke hangover through most of the game.

An unexpected delight

A friend and TheatreSports player had her birthday celebration last night. After SOHAR Big Friendly and I went to Sea Point to join about 15 friends for KARAOKE!! You would think that a bunch of performers would want to celebrate off-stage and differently, but no. Song after song was sung with gusto and interpretation.

And what a fabulous place. With the most unlikely and extraordinary bunch of people. My best was a young drunk guy who was with two, what looked like, foreign language students. He was just fantastic. Nerdy in is stripy T shirt and jeans pulled up a little further than they should have been, he hopped up jerkily in response to every song. He danced and applauded and sang along and fell asleep.

The place itself is very strange. There is a big ‘hall’, a place for everyone to have a go, with four small banquettes, one big one and a table and chairs in the middle. Then, there are private karaoke rooms for hire (just like Lost in Translation). I discovered these when I saw someone I knew but who I couldn’t attatch to our party. He confessed that he was “in a private room with friends” and I went to have a look. Apparently they go quite often and five of them hire out the room for an hour or two.

It’s addictive. And weird. And humiliating. And amazing. One of the girls in our bunch was the most astounding. She is not an actor. She is loudly, beautifully, unnaturally tone-deaf. And she sang her heart out. She was huge.

Aside from the fact that people can smoke inside (which is weird and hectic and hard for me) it is a wonderful and fun thing to do. So, don’t look for me and Big Friendly on Friday nights. We’ll be in our room. Singing Hey Jude.

Chris Roper, Marx and Vodacom

I like. Chris Roper is on his high horse. And I agree. Those Capitalist bastards! SMS him when you’re done reading about how MTN is fleecing him.

any bright ideas?

Last night’s performance of Songs of Hangings and Redemption was magnificent. Really awesome. I sat doing sound and lights with goosebumps on my arms. Graham Weir sang like an angel. Or like the devil, even. Pitchie blew us away with his slide guitar in particular. And when Fuzzy played his pennywhistle solo nobody breathed. The Intimate Theatre is an amazing venue for this type of show. It looks like an old barn and if the wind blows gently it creaks though the roof and even the ancient wooden floorboards. The audience response at the end was rousing. Which was truly amazing since there were ELEVEN people in the audience. Thank you you eleven. Where is everybody? Honestly, you can’t afford to miss this one. When we ran at The Kalk Bay Theatre people this side of town complained that it was too far. Here’s your chance. Cm’on.

Page 2 of 5

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén