Friday, June 09, 2006

The Mystery of the Missing Blog

Good morning from sunny Tiree! I must remember to complain about the weather more often if this is going to happen.

Now, here’s one for Jessica Fletcher: The Mystery of the Missing Blog!

There have been problems with over the past few days although you wouldn’t have known it if you were just visiting the blog itself. For quite a few days this week entries and phtographs wouldn’t let me in and sometimes I couldn’t get logged in to my account at all. On Wednesday, after the Napier Play, I logged in and thought I had posted a short report - in fact, I’m SURE I posted a short report. I’m even sure I saw it online. But it’s nowhere to be seen. So –

I was absolutely exhausted after work on Wednesday. I have no idea why other than to say I always wake up early at this time of year because it’s so bright outside. While I was waiting in the car outside the co-op at about 5 pm waiting for my daughter Jenny to finish work I was dozing on and off. Mabel wanted us at the hall for 6 pm to set up the props and run over our lines.

I don’t think anyone would disagree with me when I said that panic and pandemonium preceeded that night’s performance. Mabel wanted some of the props on little platforms so that people at the back could see. The cart and the boat didn’t arrive until about 6.30. Word was that Pat Boyd (who played the manager of the seaweed company) was very ill with the bad cold that is going about and wouldn’t make it, the lighting rig had to be reset, a new lighting man had to be drafted in and was still learning how to work the desk and learn the cues fifteen minutes prior to the play beginning …

Mabel’s face was a picture.

But of course it all went reasonably well. No major hiccups. Even Pat struggled out to get there although he was obviously quite ill.

I think everyone who was involved agreed that the atmosphere wasn’t just as electric as it had been during the A’ Bhuain performance. I think some of the players would admit that it was much more nerve-wracking performing before an exclusively local audience.

The way I played my part – Hugh MacDiarmid, the Factor in 1883 – was basically down to how I was directed to play the part. Mabel wanted it ‘sleazy’ and I palyed him that way and somewhere along the way poor old Hugh became something of a pantomime villain. But in actual fact it transpires that Hugh MacDiarmid was one of the more tolerable and likeable factors. Character assassination? Perhaps. But I don’t think we’ll be hearing from Hugh’s lawyers anytime soon.

We were all very relieved when it was over and the show was, once again, very well received. And with that, I bring my acting career to an end – for the moment at least!

The cast and crew were all brought down to earth with a bump when we found ourselves dismantling that cart and loading it onto the back of a trailer, stacking chairs, taking down a stage and so on..

I reckon there was maybe 100 people at An Talla on Wednesday night. And yes people are back to booing and hissing at me in the co-op and anywhere else they come across me. I quite like it for some reason! All just a bit of a laugh of course. Having said that I was in conversation with Liz Lapsley on Thursday morning and we agreed it would be nice to put on a pantomime at Christmas.

And as I related in an earlier blog there is talk of an HNC in performance arts being run on this tiny wee island. I must admit I really enjoyed this experience and wouldn’t mind doing something else.

1 comment:

James said...

hi gordon
Well I may not be hugh macdiarmid's lawyer!, but I am his great grandson, so I was intrigued to find reference to him in a casual search of the web. Can you tell me anything about him? Is there some history about him? His daughter Meta was my grandmother - I understand they lived in Island House, where my father was brought up. I have never been to Tiree and would love to come. Is Island house still there? Regards - james dunford wood (