webcowgirl: (Default)
Sunday's big deal was going to see Paris, a "Lost Musical" by Cole Porter getting a staged revival (see my review for the details) at Sadler's Wells. It was really great fun, as silly a show as you could please, with snappy dialogue and good to great songs. I didn't even mind that it was three acts - time seemed to fly! I'll have to go to the next one with [livejournal.com profile] booklectic if she can manage it.

Yesterday was Plow Through Boring Personnel Stuff at work (complete with great quote I'll have to share later), followed by Korean food and then a trip to the Peacock (Sadler's Wells southern outpost) to see a night inspired by Diaghilev - yes, again, as half of the dances were pulled from the original Diaghilev night Sadler's Wells did back in September. Thankfully, they did the best piece from that evening ("Afterlight"), and we got a new Wayne MacGregor to boot, so it was well worth the five quid ticket price (and the community dance pieces weren't all that bad). In fact, it was so well worth it that we left after "Afterlight," the better to get home and get a good night's sleep. I ruined the effect, though, by staying up late writing my Paris review. I've been out 14 nights in a row as of last night and have three more nights to go before I "take it easy" by going to Sicily; this going out and then writing about it lark is kind of wearing me out. If only work was less busy and I could spend more time writing there ....
webcowgirl: (Default)
Right! My review of Blaze, the street dance thing I saw at the Peacock, is up now. Who'd think I'd be doing ballet and street dance, but I do really enjoy the action and the energy. And it's great to be in a theater full of roaring teenagers.

Tonight we continue our Shakespearean Madness Week with a trip to Macbeth at the Barbican. This is the complete opposite of last night, which was Hairspray with [livejournal.com profile] booklectic and two other friends. It was a really cheerful show and fun to see again. It was also really nice to see [livejournal.com profile] booklectic, and between her and [livejournal.com profile] babysimon I am finding myself psyched for the costume party tomorrow night! But first ... work ... and this is the day I need to get in early. Yesterday I took a very long lunch and went to Pilates at the Y, which was good but did NOT have my favorite instructor running it. Today will be catchup day ... after I leave, which I must do now!
webcowgirl: (Ozu)
My "keep yourself busy" strategy for the month of February has really kept me hopping this week. Fortunately I've still been seeing lots and lots of Ozu, which means going out but not coming home late. This week we saw Late Spring, which was really just quite a Japanese movie. It had a tea ceremony, a trip to Noh theater (have never seen it before!), and lots of visits to sake bars. It also really pointed out some very Japanese attitudes that I'd never conceived of before, such as that getting remarried (even after being widowed!) would make you unclean. I especially enjoyed the scenes set in Kyoto, which reminded me of J and mine's trip back in 2001, right before I started that horrible job at the insurance company. (The icon is from Floating Weeds, by the way.)

Wednesday, then, was a trip to see Bette Bourne of Bloolips in A Life in Three Acts. Bette had a lot of great stories to tell (the play was about her life, basically a reenactment of a series of interviews) and I really enjoyed the insight into 50s-80s London. Whoda thunk that being an actor could be just as much of a trade as being a printer? And also it was great to hear someone who felt so strongly "I just gotta be me."

Last night was a Fado colored dance show at the Linbury called "God's Garden" (which I haven't written up yet). It was a little incoherent but pleasant enough - they did give out wine to the audience and there was a very hunky man taking off his clothes. Beforehand we went to Kitchen Italia, which unfortunately has gone for those bench seats I hate so much. They also made their waiters upsell you to "filtered" water when you ask for tap specifically. I was aggravated, and to make it worse the risotto was chalky (read: underdone). But I ran into my old coworker Ken there, and he didn't snob me off. We'll see if he really wants to hang out and play games.

And if there are any Faulkner fans out there, this New York Times article about a notebook that influenced much of his writing is well worth reading.

Off to work now ...
webcowgirl: (YellowLeaves)
Somehow, despite being a person who desperately believes in celebrating my birthday on my birthday, I've managed to have five different birthday celebrations this year, hopefully finishing with last night's trip to see Eonnagata at Sadler's Wells. Let's be clear: the Chevalier D'Eon was a person who at different times in hir life was thought to be a man and then a woman, and lived hir life as both. What we got on stage was two deliciously gorgeous people (Sylvie Guillem, with her long, red hair and longer legs, and Russell Maliphant, bald head and muscular in a more solid way than most male dancers) playing the lead character, sometimes at the same time, sometimes in sequence. I was completely absorbed. It was fun to watch and very sexy and for anyone interested in Japanease culture, the French court, or gender fluidity, it was a must see. Taiko drumming and pannier skirts? Count me in!

Just as much fun was spending the evening with [livejournal.com profile] dreamsewingmiko, whose move to London has been a cause for great rejoicing for me. It's rare to find people I really connect with - the ones where I just sit there nattering on because they're so much fun that everything you say to each other leads to a million other things to say and even when you stop there's still so much more to talk about - and she's one of them and when I'm with her time just passes like it isn't the precious commodity it really is ... but it still is because it's the times like these that you're living it for, isn't it?

Anwyay, a great evening, and overall I greet forty-two with much anticipation for a great year.
webcowgirl: (Queen Apple)
I've written up my review of the Mujeres flamenco show I saw at Sadler's Wells on Monday. I started it last night but it took me a while to get it finished and the gap before Pilates was just a perfect time to polish it off.

Off to Pilates at the Tottenham Court YMCA. This is a really quiet week for me - or rather three days of not going out somehow feels like slacking ...
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
Since I'm now well enough to sit, I've decided to spend my afternoon writing up, ad nauseum, the dance (and juggling!) performance I saw last night as part of the Firsts series at the Linbury. It was an excellent evening and if you can get a ticket you should absolutely go!
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
English schoolgirls dancing in a tribal ritual around Pinocchio? Yep, William Forsythe's Impressing the Czar is on at Sadler's Wells, and a freakish little ballet it is, too. My review is up, and, yes, I'm really enjoying having a world with a real live internet connection again.
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
If you'd like to read my review of last night's Merce Cunningham show, it's up on my other blog.

As for me, I'm off to see Brief Encounter with my sister and folks.
webcowgirl: (Clematis)
Special notice for those who complained about me whining about being miserable in August:

Life is generally quite fine right now. I have nothing to complain about other than a lingering sniffle, but I recognize I'm feeling good and things are going well. Yay!

Merce Cunningham's show tonight was awesome other than the irritating teenagers who apparently think modern dance is good for a giggle (they completely freaked out during the John Cage thing, but I do think that "squeaky balloon" may just be an unfortunate musical instrument choice on the best of nights). "Biped" was fantastic, a perfect combination of dance, costume, lighting, and live music (written and performed by Gavin Bryars). Who'd think you could actually do video projections that enhanced dance instead of distracting from it? In this case, it looked like the dimensions of the stage were changing, and sometimes like the floor was floating toward and then away from the dancers. It was genius, pure perfect Merce. He came out at the end in a wheelchair for the curtain call. I hope like hell I have the opportunity to see just a few more new works by him.

Also: [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy lit the MFA thesis show for one of the dancers, and I've discovered that port is my interval drink - much nicer than ice cream and both the same price at this venue. But since there were two intervals, and white chocolate raspberry ice cream, I actually had both.

Tomorrow: my sister arrives! Now: sleep. The cold is making me look a bit transparent, and the circles under my eyes, while lending themselves to a Romantic/consumptive look, could really do with going away just immediately, and taking my wrinkles with them.
webcowgirl: (Default)
Random Dance Covent Garden IGNITE Festival "Proprius"
picture.jpg

webcowgirl: (E-love)
Someone found my theater blog by doing a search on "fried bread 'the birthday party'." This cracks me up.

I really want to go see this Gershwin ballet thing but it's ridiculously expensive. Even moderate seats are 45 pounds. That's crazy.

Reading the articles about the Scott McClellan thing has been pretty amusing if you have a highly developed sense of irony.

Mr. Rove is to the McCain campaign what Bill Clinton was to the Hillary Clinton campaign: a ubiquitous albatross dispensing dubious, out-of-date political advice and constantly upstaging the candidate he ostensibly supports. Ooh, chilly - and accurate! Plus it sticks a knife to both the Ds and the Rs, and you gotta love that.

It seems that if you trust your gut without ever feeding your gut any facts or news or contrary opinions, if you keep your gut on a steady diet of grandiosity, ignorance, sycophants, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, those snap decisions can be ruinous." Yep, Dubya, we call him President PBJ!

That said, it's late, so I'm off to bed. I've got my Guy Maddin schedule worked out, now all I need to do is figure out if anyone will go with me before I buy tickets ...
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
I've done a slightly more extensive review of the ballet we saw last night on my other blog. I won't flatter myself that most of you give a rat's patootie about my reviews or ballet, but, man, I did enjoy that show, so I'm pimping it anyway. Who'd think Hamlet would make such a rocking ballet?
webcowgirl: (Darger)
Well. [livejournal.com profile] wechsler and [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy got "Random Dance," I didn't. My review here. I find the whole idea of a dance piece being a big mathematical joke impossible to make sense of, but if it's somehow made [livejournal.com profile] wechsler a modern dance fan, then something's going right - or I've really just cracked his nut. I guess hanging out with me for this long has to have some kind of deleterious effect ... read his review and see if you think I've dragged him down the long path to artsy fartsy-ness.

Oh, and I finished Jasper Fforde's Something Rotten tonight - there's something about reading a book featuring Neanderthals playing on a professional combat croquet team at 8 in the morning that does a body good. I'll wait a bit before I get on to book four in the series, but I have really been enjoying these books.
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
I had a great time at the Carlos Acosta show at the Coliseum, even though we had crap overpriced balcony seats. The review is up and I'm calling it a night.

Also, in my Thursday Next novel, as she was rescuing a William Shakespeare clone, she was attacked by a bunch of genetic experiments, followed by an army of cloned Napoleons, only to be saved by an army of, er, Wellingtons. Now she's going to play competition croquet with a team half composed of Neanderthals, and somehow this all makes sense.
webcowgirl: (Ballet)
Well, thanks to an 8 PM start time, we made Ballet Black at the Royal Opera House's Linbury Studio. Sadly, the choreography was mostly fair to middlin' and the dancers were .... not impressive. I thought maybe they were just missing things with the first piece because it was new to their repetoire, but later it became clear there was a lot of missing going on - legs not able to go equally high, sloppy handling of partners, a clumsiness on pointe. I know ballet is hard, but tonight I could really see it - and I go to see ballet so I can go "Wow!" not "Ow!"

Still, made it home by 10:30, so at least it was short. Tomorrow is Carlos Acosta at the Coliseum and I am expecting the best from that.
webcowgirl: (disco ball)
I just watched this little audio slideshow feature on polkaing in the American Midwest, and it's got me all sapped up. Watch it! (It's a much better slice of American life than most of what I see in the media, but no doubt my own partially Midwestern background influences me in this.) It does look just a little bit Blue Velvet, though ...

Of course, what I really want is to go to a group sing. Do they even do that here? [Unknown site tag] described something like that they used to do maybe 10 years ago in south London somewhere at a bar that's now a corporate owned pubs. Ideas? Bueller?
webcowgirl: (Default)
Tonight after work [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy and I looked for an outfit (for me) at the New Look near work for a party I'm probably going to tomorrow. Verdict: me too fat. Oh well. I guess if dressing as Greed is out I can always dress as Gluttony.

Then it was off to see Hofesh Schechter at Sadlers Wells, where we were joined by [livejournal.com profile] wechsler. Shechter still has an amazing vocabulary of male movement - I've really never seen a dance piece where the way the guys interacted with each other so accurately reflected how guys really act. It was also exciting and gorgeous and full of unexpected moments. The second piece, "In My Rooms," was difficult for me to understand and seemed a bit long. Was it about alienation or the attempt to make order from chaos, or the problems in the Palestine, or something else altogether? I saw the movement and I couldn't impose much order on it. Both of the guys thought it was great.

We had enough to talk about that we all wound up at the Charles Lamb (awesome pub), me and W working on a liter bottle of Breton cider, [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy on some Honeydew Ale. We were all pretty worn out from the week, but it was a good night. I can't wait for tomorrow, when I can sleep, sleep, sleep as long as I want.
webcowgirl: (Default)
Uhhh ... this probably wasn't a bad day. I got home at 11 PM tonight and had some tacos, so that was grand.

It got off to a late start, for which I blame staying up really late last night and also possibly the drinks consumed while staying up late. As usual, there was a post breakfast/brunch nap. We were moving very slow.

Finally we headed to Angel for our catchup (our first meeting, via an LJ introduction) with [livejournal.com profile] flyyak at the Charles Lamb pub (awesome, and with Breton cider). Kayaks, ceili dances, Early Music (just a bit earlier than mine) - how did we not meet before? And she does climbing. The three of us hit it off like gangbusters and chatted right up until we needed to head out to dinner.

This is where things went downhill. Having had problems with the debit card at the bar (over £10 only), I thought that we might also have problems at the pizza place, since we were trying to keep it cheap and just share a pie (I think we way overspent last week and I'm trying to rein it in). While [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy was waiting for the pizza, I walked up the street looking for an ATM - and walked, and walked, and walked. I finally turned around and went back. The pizza was done, the bill was ready, and their minimum was £15. The waiter did helpfully point me to the Tesco across from the park (I hadn't seen it) for my cash-getting needs. So I went there ... and discovered I actually didn't have my freaking bank card with me. Suffice it to say that after J made his run to the bank and we got the pizza to the park, it was stone fucking cold and not very good and I was in a bad, bad, bad mood. Damn this fucking overpriced city. I was going to have a pleasant cheap dinner at Masala Zone but just really didn't want to spend $40 again for food, and instead I got shitty food and my evening was royally screwed up. All I wanted to do is sell my tickets to Alvin Ailey and call it quits for the day.

We went anyway, and, well, I got caught up in the show enough to have a good time. It was a really good program, including a work that had had its world premiere just a few days earlier. This piece, "The Groove to Nobody's Business" by Camille Brown, had some interesting movement - people waiting at a bus stop, people riding the subway - and a lot of very sharply drawn characters, but for some reason it felt rather a lot like a museum piece, in the same way Martha Graham's stuff did. I was shocked to find out it was brand new! Much more entrancing was "The Road of The Phoebe Snow," which, even though it was fifty years old, managed to utterly pull me into its story. Rarely do dances actually having me thinking about what is going on in the "characters' " heads, because normally dances don't really have "characters" and "acting," especially really modern stuff.

The audience was delightfully very racially mixed (a real oddity at most dance performances I go to), though per [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy it was actually only 30% non-Caucasian. I also was suprised to run into a coworker, "Vesh" or something, who'd I'd just met at the leaving drinks thing I'd gone to on Friday. Why in the world didn't I ever find anyone who wanted to socialize with me while I was there? It's all a bit late now. It was a very lonely job. Two more days ...
webcowgirl: (Angry White Poodle)
Well, I was busy enough trying to get my workshop together that I utterly forgot to get some painkillers before it started, partially because I was isolated on a college campus which had no open stores and I had no idea where I should go, or time to do so. The results was that walking back down the many staircases with my suitcase was an incredible pain in the ass, and I do not mean this metaphorically. It was like someone was jabbing me in the coccyx with a rusty, slightly blunt dagger.

The heavens smiled on me, however (possibly since they couldn't manage to lay off the rain thing) and I saw the glory that was [livejournal.com profile] booklectic and her [livejournal.com profile] dr_d, who had READ MY POST and offered us and our bags a ride to the station. He even looped around to let us of at the side that we were actually leaving from so we didn't have to go up and down the rather steep staircase over the tracks. God, I was (and am) so grateful, and here's to whinging on LJ. I don't know if the ibuprofen I got at the Cardiff central station later actually helped, but I did drop like a rock once I got on the train to London and that was it for the next two hours other than a bit of reading Land of the Green Ginger, as recommended by [livejournal.com profile] ellen_kushner.

The workshop went over really well. People were quiet but I was told later that it was because they were actually listening to me, and after I was through with the yapping and then the demo bit, about a third of the people stayed behind and made use of the DIY materials I'd brought. Thanks to my able assistants [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy and [livejournal.com profile] spikeylady, and to my own private cheerleading section of [livejournal.com profile] trishpiglet and [livejournal.com profile] babysimon. I was shocked to think that any of you actually thought I had anything to talk about that wasn't already old hat for you guys but it was really great to have you there and the feedback afterwards was good, too.

When it was done I was both sweaty and ravenous (nerves?), so I went back to the flat and polished off the previous night's leftover curry and then took a shower. I don't think this is the part of the day that really wore me out - the lack of sleep due to stabbing tailbone issues gets that award - but I think the nerves were running pretty high.

Good things to look forward to: I am buying this work by Michael Manning, [livejournal.com profile] metalweb. Rest of site generally not work safe, this image uh ... not if you work in a bank. It's farewell to the sun and for me it represents my birthday. We're also looking at some plays and dance stuff for September, the part where we don't have guests - the Orlando Bloom play (say Thursday), Christopher Wheeldon's Morphoses group, Alvin Ailey, and Hofesh Schechter in September, and "Peter Brook does Becket" at the Old Vic. Let me know if you're interested in any of these, though I might do a last minute post before I buy my tickets. The Orlando Bloom play, we're just looking to do half price day of show on Thursday, so let me know if you MIGHT be interested.

Oh yeah, and provided I can get confirmation that they've got approval for the wages we discussed for my new job, I want to give notice tomorrow. God, that will feel good. I'll send an email to the HR guy reminding him about that right now. Sweet freedom, I can smell you now! And Ibuprofen, I think I can smell that. I'm going to take some more and go to bed and finish The Land of Green Ginger, which will mean I've finished two books in one weekend (and am now ready for Harry Dresden the next).
webcowgirl: (Default)
I have a job interview today, and I'm dressed fairly nicely (but not too well, like not, "Hey, she's in a suit" well) in a red and black paisley silk shirt and smooth black cotton side zip pants. I think it says "IT professional, but not a banker." Basically, they'll see the hair and either they'll run or they won't, and I don't have suits, so there you have it. Pretty, clean, neat, coordinated. I'll try to scrape the remainders of the nail polish off while I'm on the tube. After my interview tonight, I'll be off to the Great London Beer festival to drown my sorrows - which I'm happier to report are certainly less than they were this time last week. Hopefully I'll see [livejournal.com profile] indigo_violet there - anyone else I might expect?

Last night's Paco Pena show was quite good, though it was really more about music than dancing (as I had wrongly thought).Read more... ) I did think it was a bit sad that Spain got the Flamenco and England got the Morris Dancing, but we can't control how things like Moorish invasions will play out in the long run, can we?

Alas, I was feeling distracted by matters financial during the show and wasn't able to really lose myself due to getting caught up in the magic of My Brain Doing Planning Things. Money talk, considered crude to some. The upshot was that I realized I can't take a job that means a big pay cut. ) So I was sitting in Sadlers Wells, juggling mentally between our different bank accounts (where money lives) to our various credit cards (where money dies), and realizing I can't afford to take a job that's going to mean a £8000 pay cut, no matter how much less stress it is, because I just can't afford it. Maybe I could in October, but I can't now. I also figured out we probably can't afford to go anywhere over the bank holiday. We have big sucking debt that needs to be paid off NOW, and the £500 a month we've been using to chip away at it since [livejournal.com profile] shadowdaddy got his job hasn't done it in quite the style I'd like.

So I sent an email to the recruiter and cancelled the interview. I'm back down to one now.

Weekend away in Devon this weekend; car rental plus hotel plus kayaking, adding up to a bit more than I really want it to. Grr. I'll do my best to enjoy myself, anyway. I want to do lots more kayaking, though - I really miss being outside!

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