He's alive!

I had an early Talking Newspaper today so I was off and out of the house at 8am, leaving the girls with treats and the run of the house. Having forgotton that Emma has worked out how to open the library door, I was surprised to see her on the window sill when I returned.

Outside the house, chatting to the woman I used to see at the gym, we spotted her wiggling like a mad thing.

Someone looks happy to see you,” She said, pointing at Emma.

Happy was putting it mildly. I opened the front door (which Emma hasn’t managed to work out how to open) and they were all over me.

I’d had a happy morning as well. Recording the Talking Newspaper Farnham edition was a lot of fun. Mind you, it was a bit of a worry when Vicar John didn’t turn up.

I called him at home given he’s usually very reliable. I then spoke to his answering machine. My readers all said I was being very diplomatic with my message. I explained I was not usually so diplomatic when I spoke to them live.

To be fair I was a bit worried. When the older readers miss a recording my first thoughts go to their health and general survival.

Anyway, we divided John’s stories among us and went in to record.

Our engineer was Jane who had her first solo run with me ages ago and I don’t think I’ve had her engineer for me since.

Reading with me were Paul and Ann. Ann is a very competent reader and editor but she’s not particularly funny. Still, she gets a joke and laughs appropriately. Paul, on the other hand, will corpse at the drop of a hat.

He was reading a story about the dog poo fairy and we had to stop the recording at least five times where he unsuccessfully struggled to keep from laughing.

I’ve mentioned before how it always seems like a lot of work when the team is down by one member – kind of like a football team reduced to ten players – and today was no different. I think it’s just a case of the normal rhythm having been changed. Still…

While I was there, I took the opportunity to get a photo of the Maltings brochure showing their mistaken synopsis of the opera Wozzeck which I wrote about on January 14.

And here, by contrast, is the Met’s own synopsis taken from their website.

After wowing audiences with his astounding production of Lulu in 2015, South African artist William Kentridge now focuses his extraordinary visual imagination on Berg’s other operatic masterpiece, set in an apocalyptic pre–World War I environment. Met Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin is on the podium for this important event, with baritone Peter Mattei making his highly anticipated role debut as the title character. Soprano Elza van den Heever is Wozzeck’s unfaithful mate, and the commanding cast also includes tenor Christopher Ventris as the Drum-Major, bass-baritone Christian Van Horn as the Doctor, and tenor Gerhard Siegel as the Captain.

Slightly different.

Actually, the Maltings synopsis is for a production of Turandot.

The recording went very well and I was soon on my way home, via the shops of course. Especially the chemist given I have a hair cut tomorrow. This means I had to dye my hair this afternoon. That became my afternoon job.

Later I had a phone call from Vicar John. He explained that while the date was on the roster it hadn’t made it to his diary. “How did that happen, Gary?” He asked. I was tempted to say that God probably knows but resisted. I told him, instead, I was just happy he was still with us.

Prick of the Week

I spotted this rude man on my way to the studio.

I guess he is far too incredibly important to park in the not exactly full car park to the left of the photograph. After all why should he when he can completely block the footpath. It’s not like he was in the car so I can only guess he couldn’t give a fuck for anyone but himself.

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