Monday, 12 March 2007

Soundtrack - tracks 26-29

26.Love In The First Degree (Stock/Aitken/Waterman/Fahey/Dallin/Woodward ) BANANARAMA
I am quite surprised to discover one Bananarama song makes the soundtrack never mind two! Anyway this reminds me of a guy I worked with on "Phantom" called Colin. You know what it's like in the gossipy world of theatre.... Everyone wondered "Is he or isn't he?" like it was anybody's business but his....anyway he wasn't. The reason I have chosen this is because I remember, with much amusement, Colin counting ticket stubs as he sang "Nothing's gonna set me free, cause I'm guilty, guilty as a girl can be...." Not camp at all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

27.Another Hundred People (Sondheim) from "Company" LA CHANZE
This song expresses what it is to live and work in a big city every day perfectly ....In a city of strangers, some come to work some to play......and more than anything it makes me think of the public transport service! I remember being on the train once and just as I stepped off the train my walkman chimed in with "and another hundred people just got off of the train...." Its very much an urban song and you possibly have to have spent time living in a large city like London or New York to even begin to relate to it.

28.Where I Want To Be (Rice/Andersson/Ulvaeus) from "Chess" TOMMY KORBERG
Another song from "Chess" this time dealing with what it's like to do what you set out to do and still wonder if you have actually managed it after all. In the late eighties / early nineties this was very much the way I felt. I had moved to London and started a career in theatre yet felt lost in many ways "I'm where I want to be, and who I want to be, and doing what I always said I'd do and yet I feel I haven't won at all"......The feelings wouldn't last for ever although I still haven't really worked out what I want to do after all this time! Writing maybe?

29. "No More" (Sondheim) from "Into The Woods" TOM ALDREDGE AND CHIP ZIEN
As I have mentioned in passing my dad wasn't part of my childhood having walked out when I was a toddler. He passed briefly in my childhood on two occasions when I was very young. Once he was staying with my grand parents when I was visiting Germany and, apparently , ignored both myself and my mother for the duration. Then, when I was around four, he swept back into our lives when my mum was alone (as my grandparents were in the States) therefore she was at her most vulnerable. He asked her to go to India with him, but leave me in the UK. Sensibly she stayed with me. Anyway as you can imagine growing up without a dad was not always easy. In the seventies we lived in a small village and almost everyone had both parents. I was in a very small minority of one parent families. We lived in a small cottage with an outside toilet, a mangle for the washing and a tin bath in front of the fire! I know! It sounds more like the forties than the seventies but it was by no means unusual in that era. But back to my I grew up I went from hero worship to hate and all the variants in between. Then in 1988 the bomb shell came. I was living at Simon's (my uncle) at this point and one day I noticed a letter with my name on sticking out of a book case. My uncle had saved it to talk to me about it but I had noticed it so opened it. I had recently booked a holiday in Germany and was shocked to read the letter as it was from my Dad and said he was now living there. I struggled with my emotions and tried to work out what to do, and came to the revelation that I had no strong feelings either way. Love and hate had ceased to play a part in my non-relationship with my father. When I realised this I came to understand that I could meet him with an open mind. If I disliked him it didn't matter, and the same if we got on. Well we got on OK, it felt a little strange and I never truly established how to address him even...Dad...Henry??? It was however a very open relationship, we talked in a way I never had with my mum. We didn't have that childhood history, so we approached each other as adults and it was very much a learning experience of what we enjoyed in life and some of our experiences. We spent little time analyzing past mistakes and concentrated on the "here and now" as it were. In the two weeks I spent with him that year and the next we came to trust each other and to know each other astonishingly well. He told me of some of his experiences in Asia including a memorable visit to Goa and an audience he had with Indira Gandhi. The second visit saw another person entering the equation as I met my brother Adam for the first time. I was really worried about how I would feel for Adam, but from the moment I met him I felt unconditional love. It's rather odd that I have two brothers named Adam - as this one has a Mauritian mother I often say that one is black and one is white! Anyway the song itself deals with a father and son being reunited and expresses perfectly the confusion, ambivalence and emotion that we both felt at this time. I will always be very grateful to Simon for negotiating the meeting between us.

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