Just got in from The Big Libel Reform Gig at London’s Palace Theatre and thought I’d jot down a few things I didn’t know this time yesterday.
1. People on the internet can be nice
When I woke up this morning I didn’t know I’d be going to the gig. I’d thought about it, but apathy mixed with having no-one to go with meant I decided to give it a miss. Until this tweet came along morning and I decided to go with it, thanks to Marianne (@noodlemaz). Turned out that for £20 we had pretty much the best seats, very front of the second circle, so could see everything beautifully. I was slightly hesitant about meeting people from the internet, but what can be more public than a 1,000+ auditorium. In fact, Marianne was lovely and it turns out we are both off to tomorrow’s Westminster Skeptics in the Pub to see Prof. Brian Cox, so I think that is a success.
2. Dara O’Briain’s wife is a surgeon
3. The techies at the Palace Theatre are shocking
The Palace Theatre, owned by Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber is a pretty large West End theatre that currently houses “Priscilla”, and was the venue for tonight’s event. Clearly, the (in-house?) techies either couldn’t be arsed, are incapable or have some other reason for the shoddy production values of the event.
I can’t think to imagine how much it costs to hire the theatre for a Sunday, but it can’t be small given my experience of other venues, and yet the stage-cloth was terribly laid such that it had ripples all over it, the lighting mostly awful with live changes in the most awkward of times (and not when Brian Cox repeatedly asked for dimmed lights), inappropriate use of pink everywhere (fine for “Priscilla” maybe) and repeatedly poor followspotting; moving when the performer was still and vice versa. The host even commented on it! The use of colour was particularly lazy given the lanterns had scrollers mounted!
In fairness to the Libel Reform Campaign, as a charity I would rather they kept the money to spend on their aims rather than paying for nicer tech/more time, but some of these things would have cost nothing to change and, to my mind, are deplorable on the part of the venue.
4. Drinks prices in theatres border on some kind of robbery
Ok, so this one I did know, but still; 275ml of Magners and a bottle of Pepsi shouldn’t be >£5.
There are plenty more things I also learned, given that the show was SO GOOD and had a brilliant mix of science/seriousness and stand-up comedy. I really wanted more!