And welcome, welcome, welcome.
I’m very pleased to announce that I’ve been accepted today for the position of First Night Blogger for the Birmingham Hippodrome, along with four other lovely people whose blogs should all be linked up with this one very soon.
So, you might well be asking, what the Phantom does First Night Blogging actually entail? Well, first of all, it means that I’ve bagged myself free tickets to most Hippodrome productions on the pretext of this being – ahem – work. Then, overnight, I’ll be churning out reviews of said shows, which I’ll proceed to throw enthusiastically to the winds, in the hope that they’ll be blown across the wild, windy moors of the internet and before the eyes of as many readers as possible. Then maybe – just maybe – some of those readers will want to come and see a show as a result.
That said, it’s well worth knowing that if you’re aged 16-23, you can get some pretty good deals on first night performances anyway, without having to do or say anything further about it (though, of course, we’d love it if you did, even if it’s just a question of liking, commenting, and/or sharing). Check out this page for further info – I guarantee you there’ll be at least one thing coming up to get you up off your backside, away from your computer screen, and out to the theatre. And if you come along on a first night, who knows? Maybe you’ll even see me there. Lucky you.
Whilst we’re on that dreaded subject, here’s a little about yours truly. I write (obsessively), spend far too much of my time floating around in cyberspace (evidently) and, most importantly of all, I am always on the lookout for really good stories, well told. For me, this has always meant not only so little sleeping and so much reading that my brain has dried up and I’ve gone completely out of my mind, but also being a regular theatre and cinema attendee, and watching lots and lots of television. As well as keeping this blog, I also write about films, TV shows, and plays on at other local theatres, and you can see a much more eclectic collection of my reviews and articles here (my other blog is a Blogspot). When I’m not doing any of those things, I have been known to do odd jobs for various theatre companies and, in terms of actually getting paid for anything (which I’ll be honest is rare – but hey, money isn’t everything), I work, when they want me, for the BBC. This has involved doing anything and everything from buying sandwiches and making cups of tea, to researching new programmes and writing series bibles and storylines; from letting butterflies loose in a studio, to making bumblebees out of yellow pom-poms (which you may, but probably have not seen on CBeebies’ Numtums – aren’t they adorable?); and from sitting alone in stuffy rooms guarding expensive lighting equipment, to hanging out with the likes of Bernard Cribbins and Justin Fletcher (okay, okay, I own it, none of that really sounds much like proper work either). I’d also like to mention that I have already done the “don’ts” – whatever anyone says, I like working with children and animals.
I’m looking forward to posting more on this blog, and to reading what y’all think of what I think of what…well, you get the picture. I hope that you enjoy reading my reviews as much as I enjoy writing them, and in the extremely unlikely event that you haven’t had more than enough of me by that point, you’re very welcome to follow me on Twitter, though I can’t promise that I’ll always make much sense there. While you’re about it, you might also like to follow @brumhippodrome, and have a nosey at the official Hippodrome blog.
So, without further ado, the first show I’ll be reviewing this season is called Sutra, and apparently involves dancing monks and Anthony Gormley. Fascinating. Sutra opens on Tuesday 7 May, and runs for only two days, so you’ll want to get your tickets booked sharpish.