Tag Archives: Adèle Geras

Still Fascinating after 26 years

Picture if you can, a long time ago when the witch and her Resident IT Consultant didn’t actually own a television set. We listened to the radio in those dark days, and if we hadn’t, then the witch wouldn’t have known to go to see Fascinating Aïda live on stage.  And that would have been a shame.

Fascinating Aida

Friday night at the Lowry was my third time. Fascinating Aïda are the best. Personally I believe it’s because they are girls. They write the most intelligently funny, sometimes rude, songs. They see life for what it is. They are fresh, in more ways than one. Some of the lyrics are so totally up-to-date that they are about things that have just happened. Some, on the other hand, are so fresh that they happened this week, or possibly even more recently.

They would understand the worries I had about my hair all evening. (Have you any idea of how nerve-racking it can be to go to a show with your hairdresser? I can’t begin to tell you, so I won’t.) My companion must be congratulated for her bravery in coming to a show, which she was erroneously led to believe was for geriatrics only. (FA, you need to change how you describe yourselves.)

When Dillie Keane sits at her piano and sings, I always say to myself that I like her best. Then I always think that Adèle Anderson has a very good voice and I like her best. After which I generally come to the conclusion that FA’s third singer, at present the lovely Liza Pulman, really has the most wonderful voice. Hmm. Could be that I love them all. Tonight I also discovered that tour manager Lara sings the best of all, so I really don’t know.

Fascinating Aida

So, not only do Fascinating Aïda cover what’s-her-name’s prize winning awards acceptance tears this week, but they remember the olden days of spam being eaten, not emailed, they can sing like Germans (almost painful, I imagine), they can do their own versions of traditional Bulgarian songs, there’s the song about the much emailed substance which rhymes with Niagara and there is the concern that the Shetland Isles are becoming too hot. But at least we’ll always have Tesco. It’s a Saviour.

Thank Gordon Brown for messing with FA’s pensions, forcing them out of semi-retirement. I for one would return to the Lowry tonight if I could.

Fascinating Aida

After elbowing aside most of the rest of the audience, I was second to the signing table and carried off my signed CD to join its friends adopted earlier by the witch. We then found ourselves in the middle of Fawlty Towers, with Basil speaking very loudly, as he does, firing Manuel as we eased past. The nice boy from Barcelona grabbed the fire extinguisher and sprayed the diners. Honestly. You just can’t get the staff these days.

And I have never before been driven along the M60 by a Pendolino train driver. He dropped me at the railway station.

Three Sisters

Don’t say I’m not an obedient old witch when it suits me. In the summer I just happened to read Happy Endings by Adèle Geras, which is about a group of teenagers acting in Chekhov’s Three Sisters. The only drawback for me was not knowing the Chekhov play, as Adèle had woven a story around the teenagers as well as the parts they play in Three Sisters. Doing her “bossy older sister” routine, Adèle pointed out that the very same translation by Michael Frayn that she had seen, would be on at the Royal Exchange in Manchester this September, and she expected me to go and see it and report back here.

This afternoon the reduced witch family went along, and what a good play it turned out to be. Whether to blame that on Chekhov or Frayn, I don’t know. Could possibly even have something to do with the production, directed by Sarah Frankcom. Sometimes I think the Russians can beat the Swedes at being depressed, but this was bearable from that point of view. Adèle’s plot now makes much more sense, after I’ve been introduced to Irina and Olga and Vershinin and all the rest.

We ended up sitting with our feet virtually on the family’s dining table, so were quite close enough. And you know those annoying people who always arrive a little late, and are a little too noisy? In this case they were the actors, so I’ll forgive them. Theatre in the round is much more fun than your traditional stage.

And Daughter liked it, so that has to count as a success. Sometimes I despair that the young have no interest in older classics, but my experience with drama says that classics in the theatre works. Had also wondered if Chekhov was just that little bit too, well, Russian, but no problems there.

We really should get out more. Thanks, “Sis”!