Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Isabella Rossellini Discombobulates a Duck's Phallus

  • (originally posted on myspace here) 

     

    That's what SHE said. Ha! Oh.

     

     
    This is research by the way, for the sci-fi sitcom I am now literally writing for a read-through in Mid-November. And working on the floor of the London Dungeons has turned out to be a surprisingly fertile writing location: you're physically active, you're uninhibitedly improvising, and it's dark. Your mind is absolutely primed, it's perfect, except there's just nothing to write with. Here I realised that extra-terrestrial life's attitude towards sex would probably resemble "green porno" a lot more than the icy butlers and headmistresses we're normally shown. Ah, it's so good to see she's still making these.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

American English Class Projects based on Kurt Vonnegut's "Slaughterhouse 5"...

(originally posted on myspace here)


... are the second best - I suppose because the book's so much better known than Cat's Cradle, and it's been foisted upon so many more students who just couldn't give a monkey's or just plain haven't read it. (Anti-war movies! You might as well make an anti-glacier movie, amirite?) Casting my net wider for school-produced Vonnegut gems has therefore proved a bit of a trawl. I don't know, are these gems?


Well, aging make-up always looks fake. So, excellent work. "And why would he laugh?" - It's interesting seeing which lines each project picks up on. I really love the pan upwards to the abducting craft, a nice simple cheat. Likewise I love the abduction effects on this next film, and the typewriter/Meerschaum combo (it would be easier to "Forget Donnie Darko" though if they hadn't played "Mad World" over most of it. But this is a niggle. You put a pan on a kid in a cart on some rails. You get an A...)


 
It had to be a failure since it was written by a pillar of salt". And in what follows I'm pretty sure we see what it actually feels like to get shot at more accurately than anything heretofore managed on the screen. I know. I've been paint-balling.  


The dog joining in! Was that on purpose? The sudden change in aspect ratio before the shot! was that on purpose? Because it WORKS! Yet it's the following film that has to take the prize. (There is no prize). It may boast neither the commitment nor the ingenuity we've seen elsewhere, but it was this film that set me upon the whole kids-do-Vonnegut quest-ette, so enjoy...


"You're going to Dresden! Come on! Now! Get going!" Is it scripted? Isn't it scripted? Too many questions.
In other news, Diary of a Nobody tickets are selling fast. (Looks like I'm keeping the beard.)
And Money closes on November 25th...

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

American English Projects based on Kurt Vonnegut's "Cat Cradle"...

(originally posted on myspace here)

... are the best! Consider the evidence:



Which brings us neatly to the end of the world, or would have neatly if this post had anything to do with that, which it does not but was meant to. I saw "Collapse" last night and had just watched Milligan interviewed back in '67 before that, but! Then somebody in the pub this evening, maybe me, said "Love is not a duty but it is a discipline..." which I thought worth recording and got side-tracked looking for something to prove this, or at least pad it out, and I typed "love" and "discipline" into youtube, and was presented with Robert Palmer in Japan, and fled, and ended up here among these brilliant little school projects instead. There is no lasting happiness of any kind without discipline, probably. But let these treats serve for this evening. (Keeps has just texted me. It's been a year. Here's to plastifungus and a happy and habitable planet then. Here's to us! And OweMGee, youtube is also a hundred years old I've just realised! Here's to it!


See how easy it is to get distracted? Oh but have I mentioned the read-through for John Finnemore's new panto that took place yesterday? No. So see how focused I am. Okay, here's your homework.)

Monday, 27 September 2010

Always On

(originally posted on myspace here)

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Ah, Summer... And then August and September happened and now we're here. And Money's still running which is good because, as I said, not enough people have seen it. But I should be writing. Hey, I nearly wrote a blog at the beginning of this month but that definitely didn't count as writing. And hey, it went thus:

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"Well yes, quite.
Apologies for my absence. I haven't been in Edinburgh or anything like that - although there has been a Fringe in Camden, so a bit like that... And now I think of it I have been quite consciously favouring Irn Bru when popping into newsagents for a change of scene, thereby the August rituals are kept alive. But what might I have posted about? Well, following the here-hinted-at cancellation of Money a month ago I had about a week on Murun Buchstansagerish, squalid auto-pilot, cooped up in my stuffy, smelly crack -


- when suddenly the money from Garnier arrived (so that IS my voice) and the Camden Fringe fortuitously coincided with my freed-up evenings, finally letting me see what everyone else had been making. And that was joyous. Partly it was joyous just to catch up with friends from the London Dungeon (where I'm back, obviously) but the chief joy came from simply being able to sit in an audience again, and from being impressed and addressed and surprised by these friends. And being proud, and to be feeling part of something other than Shunt. 'That Mitchell and Webb Look' was happening as well, I know, but - maybe because I haven't written a single minute of comedy this year - I didn't really feel a part of that any more (God knows I tried, watching and re-watching every 'Prayer and a Pint' posted on youtube and relishing David's phrasing and Stuart Scudamore as the Iranian extra proving there are no small roles, only small actors - He is for me this season's giant robot scorpion -


all this while still having no real idea what I thought I was doing... HamerD's comment probably sums it up best: 'It's not supposed to be a classy sketch.')

"What else do I feel a part of? Well, the recession obviously. I have three jobs now, and there are four people living here in Morgan's now, not two. (Yesterday's Evening Standard proudly proclaimed George Osborne 'leads the way and sacks 350' so it's good to know we're all doing our bit.) Job one's the Dungeons. Job two's the Ghost Bus Tours, started up by an old Dungeon friend Ben Whitehead and doing very nicely it seems. I jump on and off in the evenings. I sweat and get possessed. The city is our stage I suppose, and that's a bit like Edinburgh.

"And job Three's 'Money' by Shunt. Which is running again. Four shows a week now. This must be good news because it's an outstanding show, and it shows just how huge an amount of work is going into its survival. But on our first night back I did realise that I hadn't missed it at all. I suppose there's a lot of anger tied up in that place (and anger's a hard barb to shift, as obviously poisonous as it is, because it's righteous). But let's turn up and do the show, let's see if we can get the bar going. But also let's find another focus. It's September. I need to write. Actually that's not the problem, I need to write loads: half-hours, hours, three-dimensional people who interact with each other over a period of time and make sense and don't make sense, that's the block. Apologies. Here meanwhile, as promised, and as no kind of spur, is the state of Douglas Adams' grave."

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And that was the end of what I nearly posted. And still I haven't been writing.
The only thing to add is that ever since we've thrown open the fire doors and chalked up "Bar Open", Shunt's been feeling a good deal more Shunty. And it's nice to sit on the door at a free entrance. On Thursday night I chalked up "Bag Search in Operation" and sat on a deckchair rifling through my satchel, loving my joke. "Always on", exactly.

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Money here
Ghost Bus Tours here
And what is now excellently going on across the landing from our bathroom here

Friday, 30 July 2010

:(

(originally posted on myspace here)


Could you step into my office?

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Thanks. Okay pull up a chair, great... So listen, no news is good news but if you want to see Money it would be incredibly useful if you came this month. That's tonight or Saturday. Just saying. Really, really useful for all concerned. Sorry to go on about it. But that's it really, I just wanted to let you know that. Okay? Not at all, thanks for popping in. See you tomorrow maybe, o-hokay. Buy.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

A scene from the Coens (Fleeting Canadian Cameo)

(originally posted on myspace here)

 

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After last night's show Tom and I were sitting with our bottles of Super Bok in a corrugated iron shelter, looking out in silence at the evening drizzle and the festoons and the sold and the unsold chairs, when a man in glasses turned up and asked "Aw man, do you know if there's a late show?" He wore a matching short-sleeved shirt and a blue trilby to shield him from the rain and said he was from Canada. "I'm here to see forty-five shows in twenty-four days" he explained. There wasn't a late show Tom and I apologized. The man said there was nothing like British Theatre in his opinion, and that he'd heard our show was quite like Cirque de Soleil only scary. I said Tom was quite like Cirque de Soleil only scary. Tom said he didn't have the skills. I said not falling off was a skill. Then we asked him what, twenty-nine shows into his mission, he'd liked the most. He said something called "Blind Spot" which I think from his description was about the mythical blind seer Tiresias ("Seer?! HARDLY!" Laurence and Gus) but there had been two plays about Tiresias that week and now he couldn't quite unpick them in his mind. Anyway he hoped to catch our show on Saturday instead, after seeing "Rope". We asked if it was the old "Rope", and did he know how long it was. He didn't but I hope he can make it over. His name was John Tracey. It's on the list.

Money's still on here.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Time for a hymn

(originally posted on myspace here)

Just some plugging, then I'll let you get on. I wrote a hymn, a second if you count Jonah Non Grata's "Spanky Ax" and actually hell yeah let's count "Spanky Ax". You can hear this hymn - the other hymn - on this week's TuMAhWoL over at iplayer being sung by David Mitchell within hearing of a Japanese actor called upon to do little but go yes and nod, which seemed a lot less racist in my head. Sorry Togo Igawa. I see from your IMDB you appeared in an episode of Never The Twain back in 1988 as "Japanese Tourist"; I hope you didn't suffer flashbacks. From going yes and nodding I mean, not from being in something my dad might have written. (Look, actual footage of a Japanese inventor going yes and nodding can be found here like that's going to help my case. I did research! Brackets: And this is my first ever recurring character in a sketch show. Christ! I think he goes to Tehran next week, close brackets.)

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Tache? Check. Milk? Check. Cultural WTF? Check.

You will also see Robert Webb fulfill a long held wish of mine to see Daniel Day-Lewis get into a fight with his own facial hair. (Is it in fact possible to be TOO cutting edge?) And you will see a line which I simply intended to signify the sucking of a pipe ("Pp- Ppah-") misinterpreted as an attempt to blow a mustache off one's own face with consequences far more hilarious than I can claim responsibility for. It is a GOOD sketch, and makes me feel a bit like I've won Jim'll Fix It (and thanks once again to whoever's already uploaded these sketches onto youtube so I can put them on my homepage. Cheers, pirates.)

AND! On Friday you can see my sister triumph as a porn's answer to DeForrest Kelley on "The IT Crowd"- What am I saying, "Friday"? You can see it NOW!

&! Once it is uploaded I shall post a charming and moving photograph of Douglas Adams' grave discovered yesterday in Highgate Cemetery by me and my baby (who from now on I might call Keeps, I dunno about this whole "my baby" thing.) Jeremy Beadle's buried there as well it turns out. His epitaph is "Ask My Friends", which now I think about it actually makes perfect sense.

Right, off you go- Oh wait yes! Bonus hymn:


(Thanks as ever, videogum)

Monday, 26 July 2010

The First Futurama (ADAM CURTIS SAYS "WATCH IT")

(originally posted on myspace here)

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Oh Heavens! I was hoping to put up a post about General Motors' Futurama from the 1939 World's Fair which I first found mentioned in Michael Chabon's superb book "The Adventures of Kavalier and Clay". Perhaps partly because of the structural similarity of a lot of Shunt's work to a ride, quite a bit of the research behind "Money" had concerned theme parks and expositions - where citizens were invited by businesses to queue up and have their future dictated to them - and for me the 1939's World Fair, and the Futurama in particular, really stand out as something like the fountainhead. It was after all Disney's work on this Fair that led to the spawning of Disney Land, Disney World and the Experimental Project City Of Tomorrow (and is why Tony Stark's dad in Iron Man 2 has that moustache). But coming to write this post, and re-reading the Chabon, I realised I had in fact completely overlooked in my research (and by research of course I mean "surfing youtube") the exhibit into whose remains Clay and Bacon actually sneak: not "Futurama" but its companion piece "Democracity". And thus, looking for footage of Democracity, I came across the following typically arresting and gigantic narrative from Adam Curtis about its creator Edward Bernays (particularly fascinating for me as the similarly arresting and gigantic sci-fi sitcom pilot I am currently putting off is inspired by exactly this same link between Futurism and Shadowy Figures Of Influence, or might as well be, I dunno, haven't written it yet)...



... And this in turn took me to Adam Curtis' equally arresting take on interviewing the Goldsmiths here. So what I'm saying is I got a bit distracted.

But let's plough on: Here are some stills of the 1939 Futurama taken from a contemporary home movie. It's not simply the scale of the ride that knocks me out - FAR larger than I expected - but the accuracy! Look at it! No steam-powered rain-shields or helicopter-bussles here, this is pretty much how 1960 turned out, no? It's like General Motors said "This is the Future" and the world said "Oh okay." Keep your hands in the machine, please:

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These are moving cars by the way, driven by a clockwork mechanism. The effect is startlingly realistic in some  footage. Anyway, into the night...

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See? BIG!

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No but REALLY BIG!

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"Residential, commercial and industrial areas all have been separated for greater efficiency, and greater convenience," says the narrator. It is that sinister.

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"Here is an American City re-planned around a highly developed modern traffic system..." he goes on.

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"On all express city thoroughfares the rights of way have been so routed as to displace outmoded business sections and undesirable slum areas whenever possible..."

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"Man continually strives to replace the Old with the New. Rich in sunshine is the City of 1960."

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Sigh...

The full promotional film, complete with spooky organ music, is here.
And the home movie from which these images were taken is here, I think. I lost the link. It's spectacular whatever it is.
Oh and of course Money's still on here.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Lounge Flashback: November 18 2008

(originally posted on myspace here)

 

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I've just come across this old post from 2008 and been struck by how much of what's been knocking around in my mind following the closure of the Lounge turns out to be quoting from it verbatim, so here's a link. Clearly I think in recycled soundbites.

Reading through these old posts it also occurred to me that I might continue to write about the Lounge by just making stuff up. Keep it alive here if nowhere else. Last Thursday I saw an aerialist made out of bicycle called "Lady Ganymede" whose owner used to source ring tones for the Vatican, something like that...

Thursday, 22 July 2010

Show 317 (... Always Be Closing, cont.)

(originally posted on myspace here)



So hey! As you may have seen we finally finished making that Money trailer. And into our fourth run the houses are full once again. COINCIDENCE?!?!?!?!? We're well past the three-hundredth show and it's still fun to perform, more fun than when we started in fact because all the niggling ideas of the other shows this might have been have long since faded now and we can just get on with it. BUT... now, yes... the bad news is - here we go - Shunt's newly desperate straights have forced them to serve us two and half weeks' notice on the show! I KNOW! So ignore the trailer. Stupid old trailer. We're running until August 7th now, NOT the end of September. ALLEZ therefore! VITE already!

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There is a slim chance after the 7th that we'll be running the show part-time rather than killing the old girl off entirely but you know, who knows? I hope she lives of course, because this job has been a life-saver: it was there to take care of me from the moment I came out of hospital to a life of homelessness and burnt goods back in March 2009, and it paid for that flat-share with Mossad, and the pool and sauna that helped me catch my breath while I fell in love.

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And it's been my creative focus for over a year now, something I've been able to work upon, and within, alongside people whose company over a complimentary bottle of whatever's-nearest, in a car park full of chairs come dusk, cannot be matched. And it's offered us complete artistic freedom (and no artistic control, but that's the deal in any system, isn't it, freedom or control... but now I think of it that's probably why I made this trailer, to snatch a little measure of control). But most importantly, it is quite simply a very exciting show and not enough people have seen it. No I'll be gutted if she gets killed off. Chugging away there... Well I sent an invitation to Terry Gilliam yesterday anyway. Priorities, exactly.

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ReTweet @antimega "It's the London Dungeon for cultured adults. That's not a bad thing." I liked that.

Hey Nick... NICK! (Just catching up)

(originally posted on myspace here)


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How are you finding it over there?

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Always Be Closing

(originally posted on myspace here)

There is a cabaret tonight at Shunt, starting at 6. You are all invited. Only Shunt is now at Bermondsey Street. All of it. So if you're lucky you might even be able to pick up a cheap chair. They're good, I've bought two, carried them off like a bailiff following the father's downfall in a Perrault. In other fairy-tale news: that small door on Joiner Street leads nowhere now, because of course the Lounge beneath London Bridge has - as I may have hinted at - after months of happy and open communication between all parties keen to prove the viable compatibility of artistic and commercial concerns, been suddenly thrown out on its arse by a shower of useless pricks.

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No news is good news, and that's the news. I'm not really sure even now, some three or four weeks after its last night, how much I'm allowed to say or what the plan is, which is a bit why this blog - in which the Lounge featured so centrally - has been so quiet recently... that and just the abominable anger and sadness of how's it all transpired. Anyway here, belatedly, are some stills from that last night, the 26th of June:

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Of course we'd already had a last night back in November, with the place stripped and old changing-rooms re-revealed, and the recognition that this wasn't just the Lounge we were saying goodbye to, but the spaces of "Tropicana" and "Amalto Saltone", and that was a nice night with seeing old friends and looking ahead and we knew where we stood. This night was different, of course.

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(I don't know what's going on here, but four hours later there was an egg and spoon race.) 

And naturally the Shard asked Shunt to "leave the place as they found it", but while we're not short of volunteers, none were found willing to rip out the toilets, the plumbing and the electricity, replant the sawn-off steel or smear shit back onto the walls, so sorry about that.

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Two nights ago someone called Hilary came to see "Money". She had programmed what turned out to be the Lounge's penultimate week, and had hung from piercings in her shoulder while singing Verdi, something she can only do once a month but that's not the point, the point is on Friday she lit up as she told me something I had found for myself whenever I came to put on work at the Lounge, but have probably never acknowledged here: that there was nowhere as helpful, as generous, as responsible, as unquestioningly encouraging or as just plain big and playable-in as those vaults, let alone for free.

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Hillary told me she had made exactly what she wanted to make there. And everyone had come, and nobody known what to expect. (And then I walked home with a chair on my head.) So all I'm saying is, when I would describe the Lounge in terms of a mini-Edinburgh-Fringe reprogrammed weekly, impressive as that sounds, I actually did it an enormous disservice: it was far easier than that. Art got made there even by accident. Not good art necessarily, of course not, but how are you going to know until you put it in front of strangers?

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And there was no flyering, no feedback forms, no mentoring schemes, nothing except anything you wanted. Half a panzer coming through a wall? George would build it. A live seven-foot wide video link to New York above the bar, or the running of a fake lift for your own promenade? Andrea would rig it up and get two volunteers to stand either side with a cue sheet and pneumatic forklift. And on and on. That was the Lounge. Something like one hundred people on that payroll, three of them paid for by the Arts Council. No really, just three. And now what? The Foundry gone this past month too. And East 10. But it's the Eighties Revival, non? "Always be closing."

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"Oh well, it keeps you honest!" said an old acquaintance. God I hate poets. Okay then, back to the ghetto. And while fifty per cent of the world's cranes stand idle in Dubai, the Great Work of transforming London from a temperamental network of human-scale cultures into a collection of incredibly large, fucking stupid objects best viewed from twenty storeys high proudly changes up a gear.

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P.S. With not quite the numb pang that accompanies the deleting of a dead friend's number from your phone, I have removed the Lounge's video from my homepage and placed it below. It's more of an advert than a tribute I know, but what are you going to do? Oh yeah, you're going to come to the cabaret! Tonight, quick! Here.

The Shunt Lounge

Saturday, 17 July 2010

ZAC GOLDSMITH SAYS "WATCH IT"

So let's watch it. It's good. I mean, it's an interesting tactic (or "zactic") he employs here, I have to say. But I think - it's early days I know - but I THINK this interview will DEFINITELY provoke the immediate cessation of all public interest in Channel 4's admittedly small scoop about his election expenses. I mean, I for one certainly can't see anyone paying the slightest attention to this story NOW:

I suppose another route Goldsmith COULD have gone down would have been simply to answer the questions put to him WITHOUT prefacing this explanation with a six-and-a-half-minute tirade of injured, bawling bumdrool. I suppose he MIGHT have, say, made some attempt to win over the undecided by toning down the contemptuous, leather-lipped, head-prefect schtick a tad. Or left out the threats. But all this is academic now: Zac Goldsmith went on Channel 4 News last night and he silenced the critics. Not that there were any critics of course. Because he totally diverted attention away from the story with the simple sword of truth and the trusty shield of being a witless, nightmarishly overpriviliged bubblenaut, obviously. Smooth.

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"Sarcasm." Videogum

(I did try to find an image of Zac's win to illustrate this - you know, the one with his bang-haired, pink brother/campaign-manager standing wild-eyed beside him like Mole out of "Windy City Heat" but all Google would feed me were reams of this Ayn Rand, next-year's-model shit. Poor Zac's brother/campaign-manager.)

Friday, 16 July 2010

"they don't sing from the monty python creation like sometimes the Jewish religion?" "Close."

(originally posted on myspace here)


You know the "transcribe audio" feature on youtube - what's that? You don't? Oh well I'm not entirely sure of the technology involved and obviously it's in its infancy but basically what it means is, say you want to watch a comedy clip only you're deaf, what you can now do is read everything being said at the bottom of the screen as though transcribed - and here's the really clever bit - by someone who is also deaf. I guess it's a feature reserved only for really really special clips like the Abraham sketch that I wrote. As follows. Ahem:

Premise -
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Counter-Premise -
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Twist -
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Allotted Anachronism -
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Flourish -
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Punchline -
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The Prestige -
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- TextBOOKas more like! Nice work "transcribe audio" feature!

Anyway the full sketch is here (it's the little red cc button you're looking out for - I'd put the proper corresponding lines up myself only I really haven't the first bankable idea what any of these correspond to EVEN WHILE WATCHING IT.) All of which is a very roundabout way of saying firstly sorry for not alerting you sooner to the airing on Tuesday of the fourth Series of "That Mitchell and Webb Look" (still viewable to the British public here and boasting the Caesar sketch I saw recorded at Pinewood here) and secondly of giving you, I hope, a glimpse into the lightless, hunched one-man orgy of sifting through youtube for self-nuggets which the anticipation of such a screening has provoked. (Are one-man orgies the saddest of all orgies? Or the sanest? Robert?)

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Sylvia's Super-Awesome Maker Show

(originally posted on myspace here)


is, when all is said and done, super-awesome. But why would on Earth would I wish to make a - ugh - "drawdio"? you might ask. Well watch.




Quick Tip: Don't breath the fumes. Thanks as ever to videogum.com
In other news, I've started reading the second volume of Michel Palin's diaries and the phrase "valuable writing time" keeps coming up. What is that?
Bong.
Morgan's just bought another chainsaw. Bong.
Went for a stroll in Whitehall. Nowhere does ice lollies and Liam Fox comes up to my tit. Bong.
Oh and finally, I never did follow up that place-holder about scripts, did I? Well the moment's passed now I guess, but my cross-purposed response to Chris Goode's original enquiry can be found in the comments here, and my monosyllabic contribution to his unscripted piece "World of Work" here. Happily, complying with this request turned out to require less time and imagination than turning it down. Bong.

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Neat detail from Chris' "Blurt Studies".

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

I had not heard of Kenny Strasser


... and nor has the News. Therein lies the secret of his power, the power to make appearance after appearance on local news networks masquerading as a reformed junkie and "yo-yo master". Everything Shunt-wise is a bit up in the air right now (just as something falling off a cliff might be said to be up in the air) so until it lands, let's sit back and enjoy K-Strass and his demons in action. Actually you sit back, I still can't get through this in the one sitting:


Thanks to videogum for putting me onto this. And more here.
Oh, and I've just received the call: Money is definitely booking until the end of September, and all of a sudden we're selling out so good Yay. Meanwhile for the Lounge it's business as usual, i.e. we're closing. I think Saturday's the last night. Suddenly. Again. How terribly state-of-the-nation.

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Yeah... 's hard.

Saturday, 19 June 2010

This Handsome Chair

(originally posted on myspace here)

 

The other night my baby and I met up after the show and went to the Shunt Lounge to get smashed before walking home which has become a happy weekly thing. She asked me to tell her a story that night, and weak on cross-eyed Joyce's plum gin I made up this, which I thought i might as well put down here, without the ums:

'Once upon a time there was a handsome chair.
And all the bums in all the land wanted to sit on this chair. And they did.
But the chair did not like bums and longed one day to be sat on by a face instead. And all the other chairs said to each other "Who does this chair think it is, for whom bums aren't good enough?!"
But then one day a pervert turned up. And the pervert placed his face on the handsome chair and sniffed the seat.
And so the handsome chair learned that some faces are every bit as bad as some bums.
And the handsome chair decided to set out and find for itself where true beauty really lay. But being a chair it could get no further than falling on its side.
So there the handsome chair lay, on its side, and the police saw it and said "Was this the site of an incident?" And all the other chairs said "Yes! Yes, this was the site of a terrible incident!" And so the police taped off the handsome chair with incident tape and nobody was allowed to touch it and all the bums now sat on all the other chairs for ever and ever until the nuclear apocalypse.
And then all the people died and all the seats of all the chairs gathered radioactive dust.
And when the aliens finally landed they saw all the chairs covered in dust and said "Let's not sit there."
And then they saw the handsome chair, on its side, whose seat had gathered no dust, and they righted it, and took their turns to sit on it. And they all had faces in their bums.
And so the handsome chair and the aliens with faces in their bums lived happily ever after. The end."

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Phew, good thing I got that down!

In other news, "Six Impossible Things", the radio play I was in that got pulled from iplayer can now be downloaded here. I say something with my mouth full towards the end. It's "Sad times." The rest is pretty audible.

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

"DIGNITY... ALWAYS DIGNITY" starring ANDY DEVINE

(originally posted on myspace here)

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(Image courtesy of the ever NSFW win and tonic, ironic as she Ws at our box office. And turned Russell Brown down. Thrice. Because she'd miss the tube.)

Anyway, given that the promulgation propagation what the fuck promulgation of stuff like this is EXACTLY why youtube was invented, it is unforgivable that the following episode of Andy Devine's counter-cultural, Pop Art nightmare-factory "Andy's Gang" has only received 612 views thus far. So see how far YOU can get through it (but maybe post any sharp objects you have lying around to yourself before settling down):


Kudos to Vitto Scotti. No reason, I just like saying it. And thanks to Pier and Johnny at Big Red Button for pointing me towards it. It only occurs to me now that Pablo the drug mule must have been a real, dead dog, so stare too long into the Abyss of Andy's Gang and clearly the Abyss stares back... Hey everyone! Let's stare too long into the Abyss of Andy's Gang! This received only 166 views. Quick, before the postie turns up with your blades!

Do you hate me now? I hate me. By the way, don't whatever you do ever click on anything that looks like this:

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I mean, they will literally turn you into a cartoon. LOOK AT THEM!

Monday, 14 June 2010

How Do We Get To Carnegie Hall? (a brief history of music)

(originally posted on myspace here)

I caught the "slightly expanded" transcript of this talk a few months ago on the very rewarding blog of David Byrne ("the Noticer" I call him). The subject, how the space you perform in dictates what you make, is obviously very close to my heart (a lot of the ellipsis-heavy stuff I say in "Money" is tailored to our oblong acoustics) and there's something particularly exciting in seeing an entire history of an artistic medium presented purely in terms of the changing spaces that have showcased it. Anyway it's on youtube now (delivered by Byrne disguised for some reason Jim Jarmusch) meanwhile I'm off to try and make another trailer for the show (Ben Brantley of the New York Times may feature heavily).

 

And here is that expanded version on Byrne's own blog.
And here is the New York Times on us, yum.
And, oh, here is Michael Billington, being wrong on the New York Times, petty I know but we're playing sometimes to audiences of just fifteen right now, so I'll tear my consolation from whatever seedy nook I can. (On the plus side these smaller numbers are really helping the acoustics. Good, dream- like echo.)

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Youtube Warms Up/Gives Nightmares

(originally posted on myspace here)


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... and in other "news": That Mitchellandwebblook loses Bafta to The Armstrongandmillershow, prompting me to look the latter up on wikipedia and laugh in a way that is probably both BAD and SMALL at the list of "Some recurring characters and jokes", which is very long and - no reflection on the jokes themselves - reads remarkably like an Edwardian playbill, or catalogue of silent one-reelers. Here.

(The latest series of The Thick Of It meanwhile, deserved pretty much every gong going: Comedy, Drama, Factual, the whole enchifucklada - Hm, I can't do it... I Claudius' seed in Yes Minster's womb.)