November 2016

A busy month. Again. So busy I’m now under house arrest but that’s another story…

Three easy highlights – though one is a bit of a cheat – you’ll see why:

Firstly The Royale at the Bush. I’m currently writer on attachment at the Bush as part of Project 2036, so this may seem like sycophancy but it is absolutely not. I was worried I might not like it – I do not share my Mum and brother’s love of boxing. But Marco Ramirez’s historical drama set in 1905 about black boxer Jay ‘The Sport’ Jackson who dreams of being the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world feels incredibly relevant. The production is beautifully realised at the Tabernacle – a venue I’d never been to before that could have been made for this very play. Add excellent performances into the mix and you have all the makings of a memorable night of theatre.
awanMy second choice is my cheat: #AWAN in Belgium (because it’s technically two highlights in one). I was invited to speak in Ghent as part of Arts Canteen’s Arab Woman Artists Now and while there I met two other women who inspired me hugely: performance artist Maiada Aboud and singer Juliana Yazbeck. The photos we saw and concepts around Maida’s work are incredibly affecting, provocative and courageous. I’ll look forward to seeing her art in person in future. And Juliana’s music blew me away – a heady fusion of her Lebanese and American heritage I wanted her to sing all night.

With my final choice I surprise myself – The Crown on Netflix. I wasn’t going to bother as I’m not really into the Royals. But I knew Ma would be up for it so we started last week. The writing (by Peter Morgan) is excellent, production values high (they should be I’m sure they threw millions at it) and the performances above all excellent. Claire Foy particularly gives a very mature performance. Very different from other roles I’ve seen her play. Clearly with all the problems in the world I should be watching a documentary about how to save the planet and not something that puts a rose tint on a dubious out-dated tradition. But when I put all that aside I thought it was jolly good telly.

December brings my daughter’s first Christmas show at school I do hope that makes the cut for my blog. Enjoy the festivities.