Saturday, 31 December 2016

The Last Post

Well, not the last ever post........

Just the last post of 2016......

And as this has been a year of  great sadness at much passing, let the title stand!

I heard The Last Post played on the bugle at St Anne's Church in Soho on Remembrance Sunday in November this year.

And with the help of Father Simon, and my friends from The French House Players (a group of professional actors who drink in that very fine establishment just across Dean Street from the church and who gather to perform rehearsed readings for charitable causes....), we read the entire list of names on the Parish War Memorial out loud just before the Two Minutes Silence.

This was the first time this has been done in living memory.

It seemed to me very apt in the centenary year of the carnage and slaughter on the Somme that this should be so.

The desperately sad, poignant and elegaic sound of the bugle has long since died away.

It seems to me important that, as the embers of the old year burn down, all those we left behind us in 2016 should also be commemorated.

And with their own, less martial, music...........

"Comes now the Spring thou shalt not see,


We have sore miss of thee......."

So what to play for them?

We'll start with this:

Now that, in my humble opinion , is truly beautiful.

What soul would not wish to waft heavenward accompanied by such as that?


I can see Lemmy Kilmister, Rick Parfitt, Glenn Frey and quite a few other rock and rollers finding it a little less than sufficient unto the day......

So this is for them:

But this one is for Carrie Fisher: the saddest, for me, of all the losses we have sustained in this fell, fell year..........

I would say "Goodnight, Sweet Princess," but I know you hated that soubriquet.......

But "May flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest" anyway.........

And as you were both made crazy by a talent so bright it burned you, I'll let Miss Shepherd have the final word...... via Horowitz........ (the original Youtube clip from "The Lady in the Van" is no longer available.)


Monday, 19 December 2016

All that is Light, all that is Music, and 'All the Angels'.......

C. S. Lewis once described Heaven as 'that place where there is only light, and all that is not music is silence'.....

I think it's in 'The Pilgrim's Regress', but I could be wrong........

He is much out of fashion these days. Beyond the 'Narnia' books, his writing is largely ignored.

I think this is a shame.

Though I am far ( very, very very far indeed) from being an Evangelical....... (there, the very word made my skin creep.....) like Lewis, I am even further from Hugh Trevor-Roper:

(For the record, H T-R was a daft old ponce who allowed his ego to intervene with his critical faculties to such an extent that when he was presented with the laughable 'Hitler Diaries', a work of obvious fiction so transparent they make Monty Python's 'The Life of Brian' look like a long lost Book of  The New Testament, he cost The Sunday Times the thick end of a quarter of a million quid......In 1985. When that was a sum of money, not the price of a studio flat in in one of London's less salubrious postcodes......) › World › Germany

So, as the inimitable Molesworth would have it, "Yah boo sucks to Lord Dacre......."

'So, er, what was all that about?' you may well be asking.....

I suppose that it's about this: I may not agree with Lewis on everything, but we are still on the same side.

And I won't have him traduced.

Or ignored.


Let us consider once more 'that place where there is only light, and all that is not music is silence'.....

It can be tricky, this one.......:

Makes you think, doesn't it?

Where was the light?

Where was the silence?

Subsumed by Hell itself, I think......

And yet Zuzana Ruzickova endures.

And so does the harpsichord.

And so does the music of Bach.

Perhaps "The light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not"..

And perhaps in that light we find Heaven itself......?


Anyway, last night at the theatre.......

I went to see 'All the Angels" at The Sam Wanamaker Playhouse in London.





It is an utterly wonderful , life-affirming piece of theatre.

Please go, if you can.

At least twice.

And take heart!!

Thursday, 1 December 2016

It would seem that I am not alone..........

The blog posts of this year have been uniformly negative.

I've had to deal with the loss of some of our greats in theatre, music, and entertainment.

Politically, things have just gone absolutely all to Hell.

These two girls just sum it all up.

You will have to cut and paste this link as I can't make it work just by clicking it.

 But please DON'T  DO THIS unless you have a very relaxed attitude to extreme profanity.

(Dad, I'd scroll back and have another look at the Kingfishers. This one isn't for you. X)