Saturday, 24 May 2014


Crumbs, I'm out of condition! This afternoon, I nearly killed myself walking up the steep hill from Tufnell Park to Highgate. In fairness, it's a two-mile walk, on an unrelenting gradient, I was carrying two enormous bags and talking to Fiona all the way, which, with my sudden bout of hayfever meant I wasn't exactly regulating my breath. I'd also just been to the gym, and it was incredibly hot this evening, but as I arrived in Highgate village, I almost caved in, which can't be good!

I spent the day orchestrating Brass. I also had a meeting at the BBC with the lovely Emily Mckenzie's sister, who, comically, is called Julia Mckenzie. That's right... Just like the actress who plays Miss Marple! Fortunately she works in the comedy department of the Beeb, so is obviously aware of the humerous potential of her name. I went to school with a bloke called Michael Jackson... I wonder what happened to him?

The actress Julia Mckenzie is known to certain theatre people as Hoolia Macanazie. I'm not sure why. I think it's a camp humour thing. I don't even really know why it's funny. It sort of just is. The same people call Judy Dench, Hoody Donch. Again, no idea...

This morning, over breakfast, I fetched my CDs down from the roof and did that old-school thing of playing them on a proper 20-year old CD player, made in the day that electronic was built to last. I listened to Olivia Newton John and the War of The Worlds soundtrack, which made me dance. I played the latter very loudly on the assumption that my neighbours would appreciate a blast of retro joy! No one ever minds hearing a bit of Jeff Wayne... "The chances of anything coming from Mars is a million to one... Yet still they come..." [epic string break]

On that note, what on earth happened to Julie Covington who sings on the recording? Does she still perform? She used to be quite a well-respected actress at the National and Royal Court. I think she did a fair amount of Carol Churchill plays back in the day. I'd love to know if she still sings because that woman had a terrific set of pipes.

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