Friday 19 September 2014

Umm where do you think you've been?.....Well, nowhere actually.

I have not gone anywhere, unless you count going to Blackpool for a week, I have just been busy and lazy in equal measure for the past couple of months. I can only apologise to those of you have been waiting patiently for this post and can also only apologise to those of you who hoped there would never be another. In addition I haven't really found anything worth writing about. Today is no exception actually so this will be very short.

I am not the first to address this (although had I posted when I wrote it I would have been the first. Lazy Claire!) but one thing I do want to bring to the attention of you lot is the welcome glut of Sweeney Todd's that have come, and are coming, our way. I, like most of you I am sure, love Sweeney Todd with a passion. Ever since I did it at college back in 1992 I have been obsessed. However I have never been in a production of it since. I have auditioned for many incarnations of it but, sadly, have never been lucky enough to do it again.

So, there are 3 productions coming, one is already here actually. The newly created Twickenham Theatre chose Sweeney as it's very first venture and stars my pal from my Jerry Springer days, David Bedella and, not my pal and not from my Jerry Springer days, Sarah Ingram. By all accounts this is THE show to see at the moment. I have not seen it so this is not a review. This is a piece about marketing. Specifically lazy marketing. NOT by Twickenham I might add. The following is the main photo (taken by Darren Bell) I have seen advertising their show:

Pretty good. I would want to go having seen that. The Twickenham Theatre only have 60 seats to sell (I think) per performance but they have pulled out all the stops and come up with an excellent image with which to sell their show. So, Sweeney 2.

This one is coming very soon to a pie and mash shop in Tooting (Harrington's) starring my pal from my Jerry Springer days Jeremy Secomb as Sweeney. Again this one has not many seats to sell and, to be fair, I have not seen any publicity photos yet so I only mention it because of the intriguing site specific nature of this production. It sounds exciting and innovative. A show not to be missed (although I would buy your tickets sooner rather than later as they only have 35, or thereabouts, tickets available per night). This one will definitely sell out, I have no doubt. So, Sweeney 3.

Oh dear, Sweeney 3. Potentially one of the most exciting Sweeney Todd's ever produced. Bryn Terfel and Emma Thompson at ENO. This is coming to the Coliseum next year and I am so excited. Or I was until I saw their initial publicity photos. Now I realise these are not (hopefully) the actual publicity shots for the show and were obviously cobbled together to let everyone know this was actually happening. However, an institution such as English National Opera should not be "cobbling" together publicity shots. They knew they were going to announce it so surely they could have come up with more than a bloody apron (as in an apron covered in blood, I wasn't swearing) a rolling pin, a razor and some questionable facial expressions to introduce these two, quite frankly, superstars. Have a look, see what I mean:

I know in the grand scheme of things this is one show ENO will not have to "sell" but that does not excuse the laziness of their marketing department. Not only do the two stars deserve better, we, the punters deserve better, Stephen Sondheim deserves better and the piece itself deserves not to look like it is an amateur production coming to a church hall in Croydon. Come on ENO sort it out and give us something to really get excited about.

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