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Saturday, 1 April 2017

Chapter 132: The Loves of Cass McGuire REVIEW

Hey Guys,

Last Night I had the opportunity to watch The Loves Of Cass McGuire at the Apollo Theatre. I'm not a regular in the audience at the Apollo so I was looking forward to seeing the high quality theatre that I had been assured they create.
The stage looked absolutely amazing, it's been a while since I've seen a legitimate fixed set for a play on the Island, so props to the production team there.  From reading the synopsis, this play, I was curious to see what it all meant and how so many different personalities could work together on one stage, I was not disappointed.
Despite not featuring in the play that much, Mother was played by Cynara Crump quite well. She was particularly good at acting death and not reacting to the other actors or what they were saying, it was clear that her research had had an effect on the part. Andrew Butcher played Dom excitedly and really gave the audience a real sense of his journey. Occasionally things he would do would distract you from the other characters speaking which seemed unnecessary. Tessa was played by Ellen Lamplough-Birch, who was perfectly portraying the warmth and caring nature of a care-home nurse, she wasn't too patronising and was nice to watch. Ginnie Orrey perfectly played the short appearance of Mrs Butcher. Mrs Butcher was a great contrast to the other care home residents, as well as being a great reflection of how Cass used to be.
Graham Brown was particularly good at showing the different moods of Pat. He was someone who I really enjoyed watching on stage as he was very animated and expelled huge amounts of character within his short bursts on stage. Trilbe, was played by Carole Crow in a way that reminded me of Helen Mirren. Carole has the most expressionate face of anyone I've ever watched on stage, which meant you could tell what Trilbe was thinking and feeling even when she wasn't speaking. David Stradling was quite possibly my favourite as Mr Ingram. David is a very good storyteller and had amazing characterisation. I found myself laughing with every line he said, where usually some lines would be lost, his all triumphed.
The last time I saw Stuart Egan, he was playing an hysterical farmer in Jack and The Beanstalk, this time, however, he was a soft and warm Harry. Stuart was perfect at conveying a father figure torn between his wife and his sister. In addition to all of that, he nailed the Irish accent as well. Stuart also had a great relationship with Glenys Lloyd Williams who played his wife Alice. Glenys was motherly and had really worked hard to understand her relationships with the other characters and despite a questionable Irish accent, was still a pleasure to watch.
But the Undeniable star of the show was Fiona Gwinnett as Cass McGuire. She was brilliant at portraying such a range of different personalities, sometimes she was funny, sometimes despicable and often surprisingly touching, and on occasion, brought tears to my eyes. The American twang on her accent really helped to give the sense of character and separation from the others and her parts that were directly to the audience were personal and intimate, I often felt as though she was looking right at me when she delivered them. The sheer brilliance of Fiona was clear from the vast number and length of the lines in which she had to deliver and how she managed to learn all of those is a true credit to her commitment to the show.
Not to be forgotten of course is director, Maureen Sullivan who I feel really pushed the limits in order to deliver a fantastic cast and a wonderful story by Brian Friel. Although the first half was slow to get moving, the second was absolutely perfect and had me gripped throughout and left me wanting to know more, especially about Dom and Mrs Butcher.
Overall, it was an enjoyable and touching piece of theatre which really resonated with me and would recommend it to anyone who can make the last showing tonight (1st Apr).

Until Next Time,
Stay Happy,
Talk To An Older Relative,
And Goodbye.

Mitch xx

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Chapter 131: 50 Facts about me

Hey guys,

Not a load of time to give you a full post this week, but there is a review coming next week for you to enjoy.

This week on YouTube I indulged myself and revealed to you 50 facts about me:
I hope you enjoy it.

Until Next Time,
Stay Happy,
Indulge Yourself,
And Goodbye.

Mitch x

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Chapter 130: What is Comic Relief?!

Hey Guys,

This week I had my hair shaved off for Comic Relief:
On here I thought I'd talk about what Comic Relief is.

Comic Relief is a major charity based in the UK, with a vision of a just world, free from poverty. They work all year round to help make their vision a reality. And in the years since they started out in 1985, with the support of some remarkable people, they've achieved amazing things and raised over £1 billion.

Red Nose Day is a day on which people up and down the country hold events with the purpose of collecting money to donate to Comic Relief. There is also a live telethon which includes sketches, music, and comedy as entertainment and as a way to get people to donate.

You can watch this on BBC1 on Friday at 7pm.

Until Next Time,
Stay Happy,
and Goodbye.

Mitch x

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Chapter 129: Why was I at Britain's Got Talent?!

Hey Guys,

So this week I vlogged my trip to Trafalgar Square:
On here I thought I'd explain what was going on.

Every year Britain's Got Talent opens with a Piece to camera/sketch/performance type thing, this year it was filmed in Trafalgar Square and I was invited to join in, I was told to wear red, white and blue so found my most outlandish red white and blue and I headed to London.

On arrival we watched the choreographer run through the performance that would happen during the opening sequence multiple times as different aspects and performers arrived, we also watched the crew set up barriers and do mic checks.

Eventually everyone was filtered into the barrier pen, and I was lucky enough to get right near the front. Then the military players turned up, featuring last years winner, Magician Richard Jones. They repeated the opening a few more times and then Ant and Dec arrived.

They spoke to us for a bit and then got straight into filming their speech. Following a turbulent year in politics, it was clear that they were playing on this for their performance this year as they took to a plinth and began making their campaign promise. It was clear in parts of their speech that there were going to be cut-aways to sketches filmed elsewhere, so I look forward to seeing the final edited cut when BGT airs later this year.

This was an awesome opportunity to be part of and I'm really looking forward to sharing a screen with Ant & Dec, although, if its not edited in a way where we both feature together, then I'll be happy in the knowledge that I was there and I was filming with them.

Until Next Time,
Stay Happy,
Do Something Awesome,
And Goodbye.

Mitch x

Friday, 10 March 2017

Chapter 128: Into The Woods REVIEW!

Hey Guys,
Yesterday evening I got the chance to see Christ The King's production of Into The Woods.
This was the first time I've seen anything from CTK so I did not know what to expect, however being a fan of Into The Woods (and someone that wants to put it on in the future) I had high hopes and expectations.
The show was staged very well, comprised of 3 platforms it gave a nice element of levels to the performance. There was a small area for projection which was used well to show the Giant and the sky and there was a very creative way to show Cinderella's Mother's Tree which was done with a rail and a collection of Umbrellas with vines on a pulley system. The only downside was the bark on the stage, which although gave a nice effect, had to be dodged from time to time as it flew off the stage and into the audience, it also had an aroma to it which suggested it was new bark, but I quickly adapted to that and enjoyed the show regardless.
I was surprised by the standard of performance as you often find that school productions struggle to find enough cast with acting talent, let alone the ability to sing, especially with the difficulty that some of the songs in this musical possess, but everyone, even those who seemed less confident, blew me away.
Nathan Stubbings as Jack, was very good, he fitted the part well and looked like he enjoyed playing it, which I like to see when watching theatre, there was a moment, after his onstage mum had died, where we were close to seeing real tears from him; This was something else I loved about him, he was equally as tear jerking as he was funny and it showed real talent at conveying a range of emotion. His mother, played by the incredible Olivia Garner, was how I've always imagined Jack's Mother to be in this production, she was the perfect mix of caring and head strong and was also very funny, I find comedy is quite hard to pull off on stage without sacrificing the quality of acting, but Olivia pulled this off perfectly. Special mention should go to Helene Jeugens and Leah Blair who played their pet cow, Milky White, often underrated but not easy to make a cow's head look so alive, I believe they also puppeteered the birds which was also done well.
Katharine Burton was diamond casting for Little Red Riding Hood, her personality was really woven into the character and made for some truly great and funny moments on stage. It really did feel so natural and innocent while at the same time being so cheeky. 
Ben Baker, playing The Baker, was perhaps my favourite highlight overall, although seeming quite nervous to start with, he quickly gained confidence and gave an incredible performance which got better as we went through the show. Jasmine Brooks played his wife and she was astounding. She was great at singing, great at acting and so ridiculously funny. Annie Sussman played the witch and other than the cheesy witch nose, was brilliant, she really was evil and her shrill scream and cackle set the perfect mood onstage, She was particularly good at being remorseful when she was transformed into her ordinary self. Her daughter, Rapunzel, was played by Holly Foskett in a strangely erratic way, it really gave that sense of being locked in a tower for a long time and if that's what they were going for, then it was a very creative interpretation of the character, which I particularly enjoyed, it was perfectly uncomfortable to watch, in the best way possible.
Charlie Doorbar and Rees Cooper played Cinderella's Prince and Rapunzel's Prince respectively and were a great comedy pairing on stage. It was clear that they were less confident with the singing, which they used to their advantage, channelling a sort of westlife-esque approach to their songs. What pleased me most about them however was their invisible horse routines and their chemistry as a pair. Cinderella's Prince was assisted by his steward, slightly overplayed by Nico Voigtmann, who I felt was giving a bit too much, his performance as the wolf however, was perfect; It was creepy and disturbing to watch which is exactly how the wolf should be and Nico really knew how to work the stage in that scene, in fact, him and Katharine(LRRH) worked incredibly well together in that scene.
Yasmin Humphreys played the narrator and had the character down to a tee, but was let down by needing her lines onstage, but this was made to look like she was recalling the story so did just about work for me, regardless, she was very good in the role. Miss Shyvers played the giant and was great at getting the angry tone across with the help of some voice distortion, really enjoyed the way in which they showed the giant though projection of just the eyes. Jake Bushnell played the Mysterious man, who was, well, mysterious. Jake did well at making the character cryptic and was very clear and loud.
Laura Jones and Hollie Dunstan were 'ugly sisters' Florinda and Lucinda and were very entertaining to watch, perfectly evil, perfectly funny and brilliantly blind and grovely at the end, their mother, Cinderella's Stepmother, played by Faith Bampton, was also good, albeit a bit quiet at most points.
Cinderella's Mother was played by Hannah Knowles whose voice was beautiful in a part that is very tricky for the best of singers, and she nailed it, It was like they had casted two Cinderellas, which I think was a clever move. Cinderella however, was actually played by Joella Maddin who suited the part very well, another who was good at both singing and acting and had a particularly great moment at the end with The Baker, LRRH and Jack as they came together. 
Ms Reed-Birks, Mr Gray, Mrs Downer and Mr Thompson did a fantastic job of directing/coordinating the show. James Cooper's lighting designs were always perfect for the scenes and the rest of the crew had clearly put so much effort into the show. A massive well done to all of the Orchestra, who played a rather difficult score, incredibly well my only wish would have been that the cast were a bit louder as they were occasionally drowned out by the music.
Overall I really enjoyed the production and look forward to seeing what CTK produce next.
A final congratulations to all of the cast and crew and thank you for an enjoyable evening.

Until Next Time,
Stay Happy,
Review A Show,
And Goodbye.

Mitch x