Sunday, 25 December 2011

Ten-Year Self-Improvement Challenge. Update Ten,

Initial challenge can be found here and this is my update:

1) Okay, so I haven't been reading books... I have, however, been reading fashion magazines religiously. I promise to try harder.

2) I said hello to someone i've been meaning to say hello to for ages and a friend introduced me to someone else who i've wanted to introduce myself to for a while. Not bad.

3) I've been very slack for past 3 months, but have just bashed out several "recap" blogs.

4) Fail.

5) I'm so much better at keeping in touch with family and friends back home than I was when I started this challenge. Tick.

6) I've been so good all year and then it got cold and i've struggled. Still, i'm 3 dress sizes smaller than I was this time, last year.

A thought.

I've completely changed my life around this year and I have become a better person; there is still room for improvement. A lot less selfish, more happy and comfortable in who I am.

Recap. December. 2011.

Humphrey Ker Is Dymock Watson: Nazi Smasher. Pleasance Theatre.

Fantastically written and wonderfully performed. Kudos.

Karaoke Circus. Bethnal Green Working Man's Club.

The official start of Christmas. Best performance: Tony Gardner (yes, that is my woop at the start of the video).

The Leisure Society Meets The Heritage Orchestra. Barbican.

Supported by Lonely Deer. Absolutely fantastic gig, my only regret was that I was very tired and had to rest my eyes for the last couple of songs.

Tim Key: Masterslut. Soho Theatre.


Freeze! Duke Of York Theatre.

Tim Key was on fine form. There may have been alcohol involved.

The Joy Of Sketch. Lyric Theatre.

The Penny Dreadfuls, Pappy's, Will & Greg, Idiots of Ants, Late Night Gimp Fight, Pajama Men, 2 Episodes Of Mash and Anna & Katy. Enough said.

I recommend reading Anna's review of the evening.

Ben Target And Robin & Partridge Work In Progress. Hen And Chickens.

Robin & Partridge are my new favourite comics. If you haven't seen them, please rectify this IMMEDIATELY.

Sheeps: Festive Bash. The Invisible Dot.

Sheeps are damn good, y'all. Mr. Swallow had some gripes about The Twelve Days of Christmas; funny.

Sam Simmons: Meanwhile. Soho Theatre.

I love this guy! Seriously. Songs and dancing and lots of sillyness. Also, profound.

Again, I recommend reading Anna's review.

9 Lessons And Carols For Godless People. Bloomsbury Theatre.

This has become a Christmas tradition; such a charming gig. Highlights included Robin Ince, Richard Herring, Jo Neary... oh and NEIL HANNON!!

A thought.

My last Christmas in the UK for quite some time and i've only just got used to celebrating in the cold.

Recap. November. 2011.

The Special Relationship. Concrete.

Without Tom Basden, Sam Taradash and Jarred McGinnis took up hosting duties. Such a wonderful night; i'm quite upset that I haven't been able to make it along to more of these monthly gigs.

Allo Darlin'. Scala.

Darren Hayman supported - he is so cool. Allo' Darlin sound rather different live. Lovely night.

Lady Garden & Friends. Leicester Square Theatre.

I'm not that keen on the direction LG are taking at them moment. Hannah Dodd still outshines the other members in my opinion. Jonny Sweet, Nick Mohammed and Pappy's were all rather wonderful.

Los Campesinos. King's College Student's Union.

Love Los Campesinos... can't say the same for their support band. Heavy Metal isn't really my thing. I'm glad I got a prime position on the balcony as i'm not really a fan of mosh pits either.

Detective Sergeant Nick Mohammed Recording. BBC Broadcasting House.

Nick was joined by Anna Crilly and Colin Hoult. Nick's character, Sophie, is my second favourite character by Nick Mohammed (the first being Mr. Swallow). "I have to go, I slept with the window open last night and have a cold arm".

Matilda: The Musical. Cambridge Theatre.

Still one of the best musicals I have ever seen; just as good one year on. I think I liked it a little more when it was performed at the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford upon Avon.

Discover Ben Target. The Invisible Dot.

Supported by Liam Williams; excellent. The funniest moment was when Ben asked his assistant that he'd picked out of the audience to hit him with the stick of humiliation and was then pounded by a sausage (not a euphemism).

William Andrews: TV. The Invisible Dot.

The Invisible Dot HQ was transformed into a television studios at part of a work in progress. Nick Mohammed as Mr. Swallow stole the show - just thinking about him wrapping up a knife in a tea towel and solving a rubik's cube on stage makes me giggle.

6 Day Riot. The Lexington.

Pippa Evans at Loretta Maine and Chris Peck supported. Fun times.

The Pin. The Invisible Dot.

A Work in Progress gig at The Invisible Dot HQ. Their closing sketch was by far the best - "may I please have the spring rolls" " is Pepsi okay?",

Mark Watson's Live Address To The Nation Recording. BBC Broadcasting House.

So much more fun when you're in the audience. See if you can spot me and my friends, yo.

Stand Up For Depression. Union Chapel.

An audience full of posh people; they were rather quiet... Daniel Kitson seemed to have lots of fun taking the piss out of them. Jonny Sweet made me get the giggle when he corpsed during his set: "ha, I just made myself laugh. Someone has to".

The Horne Section. Criterion Theatre.

The Wheel Of Wonder was on our side when it landed on Buckaroo and Boy Band - my faves. The band were joined by The Magnets, Pete Firman and Tom Basden.

A thought.

I went to York with my friend, Anna. I love families and babies and York and The Inkwell (above - I bought A Charlie Brown Christmas) and my friend Anna.

Recap. October. 2011.

Robin And Partridge: Secret Adventure Club. Various Secret Locations.

The audience were split into 4 groups depending on the item they brought along/what they wore; those who wore all black belonged to Project Mayhem, those who brought a poetry book belonged to Les Bohems, those who brought a houmous sandwich belonged to Greeks and those who wore a hack hat belonged to Hacks.

Some of the acts included Thom Tuck, Jessica Fostehew, Chris Coxen, We Are Goose, Ben Target, Doctor Brown and Paper Tiger.

The hipster that assisted Doctor Brown almost outshone the comic. Just brilliant.

Demitri Martin. Leicester Square Theatre.

What a treat to see this marvelous American comic in London. I also got to hang out with my friend, James (above), who came down from Edinburgh for the gig. I just wish I hadn't been so damn tired.

Ward & White: Fun Haus. The Camden Head.

Ward and White are among my favourite collaborators. Everything they touch turns to comedy gold.

Jerusalem. Apollo Theatre.

A gift from my awesome friend, Kate. WOAH. Give this play and Mark Rylance ALL THE AWARDS.

Helen And The Space Rocket. Etcetera Theatre.

A lecture about a librarian's favourite space probe, Voyager. Pure joy.

Max & Ivan: Are Homes And Watson. Leicester Square Theatre.

I had so much trouble trying to get a ticket to see this in Edinburgh. Absolutely cracking show! I have to go and see it again. Ivan Gonzalez, you are the greatest.

Nick Mohammed And Brendan Patricks: A Magic Show. The Invisible Dot.

Impressive. Great tricks, wonderful chemistry. Nick Mohammed "whited up" for the occasion.

A thought.

Not sure if packing up my London life and moving back to Perth will make me happy, but I can't take much more of this homesickness.

Recap. September. 2011.

Peggy Sue. The Lexington.

This gig was the album launch for their 2nd album, Acrobats. The supporting acts were Monument Valley and Laura Gibson. To date, this was my favourite music gig i've ever been to.

Treetop Flyers. Hoxton Square Bar.

Bit boring to be honest. Treetop Flyers are well and good, but I just wasn't feeling it. Their support band, The Sundowners, were absolutely awful (sorry).

ACMC. New Red Lion Theatre.

Tom Basden headlined. Tom Bell set music to Colin Firth's Oscar acceptance speech and danced; HE IS SO BRILLIANT. Nadia Kamil was a favourite.

Michael Legge: Curse Sir Walter Raleigh. Leicester Square Theatre.

He's well funny.

An Event Of Some Kind. The Black Heart.

AEOSK has changed venues and is now on a Sunday evening - a welcome change. I really wanted to like Carly Smallman, but I remain unsure. Matthew Highton gave a wonderful set and as ever, James W Smith rocked.

Story Jam. Leicester Square Theatre.

Gavin Osborn, Isy Suttie and Emmy the Great. Suffice to say it was pretty damn brilliant. Gavin Osborn has the most wonderful voice.

A thought.

I had 2 bug cups of hot tea in my nice toasty house before rugging up and going to wait for the bus in the cold. My insides felt like they were made of warm caramel.