Tuesday, 25 September 2012

The rain. The ghastly rain

It rained all day yesterday and it rained all day today, until about 6pm, that is, when the sky melted into a glorious sunset of blues, golds and browns. 

The rain worries me for two reasons: Firstly, I have a requiem being premiered in a cemetery at dusk at the end of this week.  The idea that the whole thing might need to be transferred to a soulless inside venue is too horrendous for words. 

Secondly, apart from a fancy pair which I keep for indoor use, I only have one pair of shoes, which have a hole in the bottom so large that the process of just stepping onto a wet pavement immediately runs the risk of my developing trench foot. I walked around the centre of London this morning feeling incredibly sorry for myself. At one stage I was forced to take a shoe off and rinse out a sock. 

The other issue (the third of two) is that the rain is making London smell of poo. I've walked through some right minging stenches of late! 

Today has been manic. After picking up a load of printing in central London, I struggled down to to Catford to rehearse Julie's cabaret with a lovely bunch of people who included some of the musicians I brought together to perform, Letter to a Daughter, a musical I wrote with Arnold Wesker back in 1998. It was so lovely to see them again. Our pianist, Nikhil, introduced me to his daughter; a statuesque 17 year-old who was 3 when I last saw her! Julie's cabaret is a really interesting blend of music; a lot of new material, including one of my songs, and some really beautiful Piaf and Kurt Weill classics. 

My mentor, Jonathan, from the BBC, came down to meet me in Catford, and we sat in a cafe going through the shot list for the Requiem's live performance. An hour became two, and then three, and before we knew it, the cafe was closing. 

We caught the train to Waterloo and continued our meeting at the Royal Festival Hall and sat on the top level at a little circular table. 7pm8pm9pm10pm... And then the hall closed, and once again we were homeless.

From the RFH, we trudged to Waterloo for last orders in a pub and finally finished what we were doing at 11.30pm, having examined, in minute detail, a full 400 camera shots. Cabin fever set in at about 9pm. I think we're now both delirious.

It's horrible to think that, should mother nature decide to piss on our bonfire, all this careful planning will have been for nothing. I don't often pray, but if I didn't think I'd be wasting one of my tokens for a time when it was really necessary, I might have a quick word with the universe! 

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