I’m a bit gutted to find that The Collection, our wonderful museum, only just touches Cb3 which is the clasketgate grid and I feel it doesn’t have enough of a presence to merit inclusion in this piece, which is a shame.
However we do have the magnificent Theatre Royal which stands squarely in the centre of the grid so we can talk about that.
As a slight aside, about 25 years ago Phil Cool and Jasper Carrott were appearing in the Theatre Royal and one day after their show they ended up at The Raj Douth in the Bail for a curry. Terry Ade and I were in there having a meat madras after a few beers at the Prince of Wales when all of a sudden there was a big commotion in the next booth to us. A camera was produced and all the waiters took it in turns to have their photos taken with the diners in the booth who were of course the aforementioned messrs cool and carrot.
We protested that we were regular customers and that they never bother with taking photos of us so the staff obliged. For the years that that restaurant stayed open they had a photo collage on the wall that contained mostly pictures of the waiters with Phil Cool and Jasper Carrott but also one in the corner of me, ade and Terry.
Now it is a little known fact that I have been in two two week runs at the Theatre Royal. Before we had kids I was in the CAODS, or the County Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society. I can’t dance for toffee but I can sing. I was in Guys and Dolls and Anything Goes.
In the former I actually opened the show. I was stood there on stage as the curtain went up, tossing a coin, looking like a gangster. That was a pretty high pressure role, even though I was just in the chorus. Tossing that coin in front of thousands of people in the audience without dropping it was not easy. Ok it was only a few hundred and not thousands but you know what I mean.
They were great times. You can see why people want to get into the acting game. The buzz you get from the audience is fantastic. The high point of the show was the “Sit Down You’re Rocking The Boat” number which was a fantastic song with about 8 part harmony and it always got a terrific cheer from the crowd. So much so, and because we enjoyed singing it so much, that some nights we used to sing it twice. Hey why not?
They were great days. On other occasions we used to take the kids to the panto on Boxing Day but unfortunately that era didn’t last long and the kids soon decided it wasn’t cool to be taken there by their parents. Huh!
Seen a few good acts over the years. Humphrey Lyttleton, the great jazzman, was terrific. Basil Brush was good too fair play and child number 4 was picked to go on stage and take part in the show, as they do.
Haven’t been for a while now. Perhaps it’s time to head on down to Clasgetgate again.