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Thursday, November 17

Wouldn't it be loverly?
All this talk of being nice is an excuse for me to dig out the words of My Fair Lady. The show has been on my mind recently, not because of the lyric "Lots of chocolate for me to eat" which has echoes of my, just-recently-attempted-to-stop-it-again addiction for junk food, but because I went to see the show a couple of weekends ago.

I was gigging all over the place, one extended weekend. I'd had a Thursday night in London, at The Comedy Store, no less (the guy who runs it made it clear what he thought of 5 minutes' worth of guitar act - despite a good audience reaction, it was clear that he wanted to see more than just two songs "Tell some jokes!"). I followed the gig with a trip to my girlfriend's place for an overnight stay, then just as I was waking up, I had to scoot to Manchester for a Friday night gig. I played to some miserable bastards in a small bar in the centre of Manchester for very little laughter or money. Then I stayed in a cheap hotel in Salford. Not very salubrious. I was to follow this up with a Saturday night in Blackburn and a Sunday in Irvine. Wow.

Anyway, the day of this story is Saturday. I had nothing to do between waking up and going to my gig in Blackburn. I'd noticed, on the way to the hotel the previous evening, that My Fair Lady was playing at the Palace theatre in Manchester. Actually, I'd noticed this fact before. I'd noticed it back in July, but it wasn't actually on then, and I don't actually live in Manchester, so I wouldn't normally be able to go to the theatre there. However, I discovered that the show would be ending on the very day that I had an afternoon to kill in the North West. So, I popped along to the box office and bought a stalls seat.

I was quite excited as the cast included Russ Abbott and Stephen Moore. As it happens, I wasn't really that fussed for Russ, though he was excellent. However, given that I'm a big fan of the Hitch-hiker's Guide to The Galaxy radio series, and given that a certain Marvin the Paranoid Android is played by a certain Stephen Moore, it was nice to go and see him in the role of Colonel Pickering in a musical which is still in my top ten favourite musicals of all time.

Of course, once I watch a musical, I start to ponder how it links with other shows, actors etc etc. Well, there's one nice cooincidence of this particular production. Pickering was played by Stephen Moore in this production. Stephen Moore appeared in the last episode of the Hitchhiker's Guide, as did Jonathan Pryce. Jonathan Pryce was the Higgins in the original version of this production (the Cameron Mackintosh, Trevor Nunn production). Spooky!?

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