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TOYAH’S BLOG: SEPT 2016
My life in the past month has mainly been festivals but behind the scenes it’s also revolved around KING CRIMSON, getting hubby roadworthy as he will be away for almost 4 months. The last 4 weeks has also seen HUMANS 4 evolve into the world too.
I was thrilled to land Dean Stockings and Sean Chapman the chance to art direct and shoot KING CRIMSON for the tour programme and the end result is stunning……Robert behaved…what more can I say….this man hates having his picture taken but he really likes and trusts Dean, so there was Frippy smiling away to the camera!
Over the coming months I am penning the “ruff” songs for HUMANS 4. Bill is raring to go and Jan/Feb are marked in the diary for studio time in Seattle.
This means I present him with as many songs as possible before Christmas. This allows time for Bill to say NO to most of them….then come back a month later and say he really loves them…..it has become a regular much loved/ much mocked pattern on all past three albums.
He has another major project to work on this autum…..King Crimson are covering GET IN YOUR CAR (HUMANS: STRANGE TALES) and Bill is producing it for the summer of 2017.
I meet up with Bill in Paris in December, where we swoop Robert up and bring him home for Christmas but more importantly they are both my “hot date” for an event on the 11th Dec in Birmingham……more to announced soon.
CRIME AND PUNISHMENT is now open. It is a free festival event and it deserves its audience.
For me what is especially exciting is it is designed to bring a new audience to the theatre experience, as well as theatre lovers.
Sitting in on the first public performance, people drifted in throughout the show till the auditorium was full and they sat transfixed.
I have known about the production since March and to be present at the first rehearsal run through bought tears to my eyes.
Phil Willmott who has written and directed it and acts in it, has had the extraordinary vision to place 13 of my songs into the story. There are times, watching it, you would have thought the songs were specially written for the show.
The opening song WE ARE sent shivers down my spine. ANGELS AND DEMONS is so evocative within the stories setting. ANGEL AND ME has had a very special re-working (on the opening night someone came up to me and said they were shaking from head to toe they found it the most exciting thing they had seen)
Then we get onto songs from IN THE COURT OF THE CRIMSON QUEEN and they fit all the characters in the play!
The cast are very strong indeed. Alec Porter, the lead, is quite astonishing. He is a rising star. I predict great things for him.
When I arrived at the first run through he introduced himself by telling me I had held him in my arms when he was 6 months old at a dinner party held by John Makepeace (leading furniture designer).
I can count on my fingers the number of babies I have held in my life and Alec would have been number 4 out of 5!
The venue is really easy to get to. Trains run to about 100 yards away. Or you can park near the National Theatre and have a fantastic 25min walk to THE SCOOP at Tower Bridge. The show is on every Wednesday to Sunday at 8pm until the 25th Sept…. it’s 90 mins long so if you can bring something to sit on as the seating is stone!
Brexit has affected my diary for this year. 3 films that were due to start filming from July have moved their shooting schedule to April 2017 due to backers wanting to delay shooting to this October, as they wanted to see how the markets would move. They needn’t have worried, the British markets have had a great year.
The problem with filming late in the year in the UK is the daylight hours are so short from Oct till April you can only get half as much done… so April 2017 gets really busy for me. Which is not bad news as I am in writing mode now and cannot put my guitar down.
In August I had time to retrace my steps on a meandering drive I had around Gloucestershire 5 years ago.
When my mother was in Cheltenham hospital towards the end of her life in 2011, knowing her time was limited, I used to take long drives to distract myself from the grief and on one of those drives I came across a beautiful village, the centre of which was an incredible stately home, and I remember a small but exquisite garden centre that had a special rabbit pen …really cared for bunnies.
Can I find this place again? I’ve searched and searched. Even stopped and asked people in hotels along the way if they know it.
The reason being….I can feel there is a little soul waiting to come home.
It was five years ago, the place might not even exist any more. But I will keep looking. Also I was so distracted at the time I could have drifted into another county.
Robert said…”do you want another bunny so soon? Isn’t it nice to have some time off”…..we will see.
It will be the band’s last public show in London for this year. The set list will be very high energy, with THE PACKT going into the set list plus many classics.
Tonight is the press night for CRIME AND PUNISHMENT.
The weather forecast says “no rain”. Fingers crossed.
See you out there
BE PROUD, BE LOUD, BE HEARD