Monday, 5 October 2015
Autumn or no Autumn, our Cobaea scandens is almost reaching the gutter at Dolores Delargo Towers
Here we go... Monday again. Time to face the grey autumnal gloom, and off to work we go.
At least I have "Polari at the Lit Fest" to look forward to this evening - and, on this Tacky Music Monday, today's birthday girl the cool-as-ice Mlle Marie Laforêt (again) with her jolly little ditty Ivan, Boris et Moi to cheer things along!
The male dancers (if you can actually make them out in this aged clip) - are (remarkably) "Mr Smooth" himself Sacha Distel, actor and director Jean Yanne and the legendary Serge Gainsbourg...
Have a good week, folks!
Marie Laforêt (born Maïténa Marie Brigitte Doumenach, 5th October 1939)
Sunday, 4 October 2015
Our friend Alexis Gregory is a man of many talents. We first met him as one of the hot barmen at our long-gone favourite gay haunt BarCode Soho and have followed his progress ever since; his performance as go-go dancer for Stewart Who's faboo "anthem" Bitch; and the fruition of his career as an actor - we saw him in the play Stonewall back in 2007; he has since appeared in the gay-themed films Kick Off and Fit (and he has had bit-parts in Casualty and The Bill, to boot).
We always thought he was male model material
Now he has turned his hand to play-writing, and it was to the début of his first play Slap that John-John and I ventured to sunny Stratford (home of the 2012 Olympics) last night - it was a tour-de-force!
Unusually for a drama, we were actually seated within the set itself - the "Hollywood-meets-Stepney" flat of pre-op trans call-girl Dominique (Lexi himself, in basque, fishnets and dangerously high heels throughout). And, at various times through the story, Dominique plonks herself down next to or drapes herself over the startled audience...
On reading the synopsis - "Life’s a bitch… why not become one? Welcome to the world of Dominique, a glamorous transsexual hooker in the throes of an emotional meltdown, caught between a rock and hard face, juggling a stalker client with a crush and her cute, chavved out, drugged up boyf who hasn’t got out the bath in a week." - one might have been forgiven for thinking this might be an exercise in high camp satire or a bit of soap-opera, but, despite its moments of humour (and indeed the bitchy flouncing of Dominique), Slap is a deep and though-provoking piece, full of delicious convolutions between the present and past and the real back-stories of the three main characters. Indeed, the big "twist" near the end, and the play's eventual shocking denouement had the whole audience - us included - gasping!
All three actors are utterly superb. Lexi's Dominique, all strut and swagger, gives over an air of being completely in control - but the cracks begin to show as the truth begins to unravel. Former Eastenders child actor Frankie Fitzgerald is convincingly dodgy and vulnerable in turn as the druggy, fucked-up "boyfriend" Danny - but just why is he permanently in that bath?; all becomes clear eventually... And the marvellous Nigel Fairs - whose own one-man bravura performance in Didn't You Used To Be Derek Jacobi? we loved so much last year - as the poor, put-upon "posh punter" John is a perfect foil for the domestic drama going on in front of him (and turns out to be the only one to see through all the role-playing in the end).
For a début play as a writer, Lexi deserves every award going for this - and I sincerely hope it is eventually made into a film (Channel 4 has already hosted a "workshop" performance at its studios, but the cameras weren't rolling at the time). Slap's director Rikki Beadle-Blair has had past success in this area (his original - and according to critics, superior to the recent Roland Emmerich film - Stonewall movie was a hit back in 1995), after all.
It was an experience I will remember for a very long time...
Slap is only on until Saturday 10th October at the Theatre Royal Stratford East - so you'd better be quick! It's definitely worth it.
Saturday, 3 October 2015
Many happy returns, Mr Jason F. Sellards - better known as Jake Shears. Of course.
Any excuse to play again (as if I need one) this year's barn-stormer collaboration (Jake, Kylie and Nile Rodgers with Nervo) - The Other Boys!
More Jake pics
Friday, 2 October 2015
Our "house favourite totty" here at Dolores Delargo Towers, the gorgeous Tom Daley has announced his engagement.
[Dustin Lance] Black
Of course, we wish the boys all the best - and look forward to a new instalment of Mr Black's leaked sex-tape, fingers crossed - so, by way of a double celebration (in our traditional manner, at the end of a week), how about a slice of Miss Donna Summer's finest, I Feel Love (complete with cheesy dancing by "Legs and Co")?
Thank Disco It's Friday!
Tom Daley engaged
Thursday, 1 October 2015
Apparently Pope Francis was working behind the scenes to undermine gay rights in America. How shameful and pathetic of him. I have been so impressed with his approach to climate and his call to end the death penalty. But for him to make insidious comments about how the ‘traditional family’ is under threat (presumably from gay marriage) and then to secretly meet that poor misguided cretin Kim Davis...Read the whole story In The Guardian
I am glad that he is mobilising his flock to care about nature, but I would still prefer that they would all just go to their heaven now and leave the rest of humanity and nature in peace here on earth. Pope Francis seems still to be causing harm and burning witches in the name of Christ, just like his forefathers. Christ himself might weep with shame.
Francis attempts to distract us from Catholic sexual predators with a smokescreen of fake moralising about gay people and their rights to live as equals in society. Pope Francis should line up one hundred gay, lesbian and transgendered people from around the world and wash and kiss their feet. He should issue a formal apology on behalf of the church for centuries of persecuting, torturing and killing us in the name of their god. Or are we not worthy of his humility, unlike criminals, the American indigenous, and the poor? Jesus Wept.
Timeslip moment again, and our little wormhole has plonked us down in this week twenty-three years ago, in 1992.
In the news - the country's ugliest Government minister David Mellor resigned over his extra-marital affair, Britain's withdrawal from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism was still causing ructions with the pound and unemployment was at an all-time high, the new 10p coin was unveiled, Glengarry Glen Ross and The Crying Game were in the cinema, and on the small screen we saw the launch of Channel 4's The Big Breakfast and the BBC's ill-fated soap Eldorado was already suffering widespread ridicule [we loved it!].
In the charts, "Acid House" was still a force to be reckoned with - the Shamen's Ebeneezer Goode was at Number 1 - but the rest of the chart was a real mish-mash. Everything from Daniel O'Donnell to Mike Oldfield to Def Leppard to Manic Street Preachers to Tamsin Archer to Stereo MCs was here - but hovering in the wings, waiting for its moment in the sun was this classic.
Here's Bizarre Inc (featuring Angie Brown) and I'm Gonna Get You
"Yo, DJ, pump this party!"
And why not?
Wednesday, 30 September 2015
Lordy. Johnny Mathis is eighty years old today!
He may be a little too "middle-of-the-road" for some tastes, but I have always had a soft spot for a halfway-decent crooner, and several of his numbers are classics, not least these two:
His version of the Stylistics' I'm Stone In Love With You:
- Encouraged by his ex-Vaudeville father, young Johnny was classically-trained as a singer, and was "discovered" while singing nightclub jazz in San Francisco.
- It was touch-and-go whether he would take up singing as a career, as he was short-listed to train for the 1956 Olympics as a high-jumper.
- With 71 albums to date, Mr Mathis has sold well over 350 million records worldwide; his Greatest Hits spent a record-breaking 490 weeks in the US charts, and he has had five of his albums on the Billboard charts simultaneously, an achievement equalled by only two other singers: Frank Sinatra and Barry Manilow.
- His 1976 Xmas hit When a Child Is Born (Soleado) was Number 1 in the UK for three weeks in 1976, out-selling that year Abba Money Money Money, Queen Somebody To Love, Donna Summer Love To Love You Baby, Rod Stewart The Killing Of Georgie and Diana Ross Theme From Mahogany (Do You Know Where You're Going To) - yet it was not even released in the States.
- His mansion in Hollywood Hills was originally built by billionaire Howard Hughes.
- Johnny came out as gay in the 1980s, but famously avoids talking about his private life; he grants very few interviews to the media in general.
- After sixty years in the business, he is still touring.