Thursday, 18 October 2012

Body snatchers

Today's adventure started at the fabulous Museum of London at the Barbican, where Penny and I had been invited to the press launch of the new Body Snatcher's exhibition. Penny was greeted like royalty by the staff there, and they seemed genuinely interested to hear about the requiem, which is now being sold in their gift shop. I adore Penny. She's so genuine and calm and loyal and good to me. And it seems I'm not the only one who feels this way.

The body snatchers exhibition was suitably gory with terrifying wax models of various disemboweled body parts, and people with terrible skin conditions. I could go on. I won't. You're probably eating... Nice wall paper...

From the Barbican, we went back to Penny's in Hackney to edit together three promotional films for the London Requiem. We're pushing the Agnus Dei, the Pie Jesu and the In Paradisum. It was genuinely quite difficult to decide which movements to choose, particularly as many people of late have been telling me that their favourite movement is the Kyrie. It's nice to have an embarrassment of riches, of course, but it's also good to have a lead single... I'm told. The further I get into this whole promotional business, the more I realise it's about who you know rather than the quality of what you're selling. I need to learn to schmooze, but it embarrasses me. 

Still, I had my sixth repeat order of a CD today. If strangers are buying it, listening to it and then buying a second copy for a friend, then something's going right. Someone in Australia emailed today to say it was an "important work." Isn't that a kind thing to say? 

From Hackney I headed to Tower Hill to teach more people how to sing Shine by Take That. There was a period in my 20s when I made a lot of money out of Puccini. Now I'm in my 30s I've moved on to Gary Barlow. Let's hope Benjamin Till earns me good money in my 40s! 

En route to the venue, I found myself walking down Pepys Street and turning left onto Seething Lane, the site of the old Navy Office Complex where dear old Samuel Pepys 350 years ago had just moved into his newly renovated, and terribly fancy house.

The singing went well.  I made a bit of a pratt of myself by jumping up and down a lot and dancing like a loon, but it seemed to whip them into a suitable frenzy. I swore at one point. It slipped out. It was only a little "f**k it" and everyone laughed, but it's not appropriate for the corporate world is it?  I guess that's what happens when two worlds collide. I was brought on board because of my work at the BBC, but at the BBC I'm somewhat renowned for my potty mouth. I'm sure everyone was too drunk to remember, and looking on the bright side, I stopped myself from saying something much more crude to congratulate them for singing one section really well. 

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