Red Squirrels, Goblin calls, a Wedding and a birthday.

It has been quite a week with two significant celebrations – my coming of bus-pass age and celebrating the wedding of my daughter Anna to her amazing partner Jonny – who live on a Dutch Barge named Nancy when not on honeymoon.

Music was an essential element of both days. The first included the gathering of some of the original cast of Goblin Market who last sang the score 13 years ago, and joined in amazing 8 part harmony to deliver a 20 minute edit from the work by Conor Mitchell and Kath Burlinson. What a treat – to be followed by a song from my daughter thanks to John Bucchino and a story of the love of two trees from the fluent poetic tongue of Rachel Rose Reid. It was wonderful seeing young and even older friends – people I first worked with when I was still at school, others I have run companies and made theatre with over 40 years.   Thank you to so many people who joined us at a gathering in Edinburgh and then the meeting of the Goblins in London.

And then it was time to do some support/company liaison for Anna and Jonny as they put the finishing touches to a one day music festival – from Bach to Punk – also known as a wedding. The team at Wringer and Mangle were amazing as we transformed the warehouse space into a cabaret and theatre space for 220 people. The food was delicious. The sound engineers were patience personified. The operations manager was so so supportive. Couldn’t fault them.

Every wedding has to have a bit of drama – and there can surely be nothing more scary than for the groom and the bride to be waiting in different part of the building for the Registrar not to turn up. The audience was seated, the first performers were singing, and we had worked out a Plan B so the celebrations could continue, before the double act arrived. The officiator couldn’t have been more joyful when she and her legal partner arrived – but wow they caused a flurry of meetings and scares around the two enclosures and with the management of the venue. No idea what happened to them. In the end the marriage happened. Note to self if I am every asked to check in on scheduling – check and double check the registrar.

The very next day Kath and I came home to our idyllic Blackness with our university bound neice who had never been to Scotland. Excuse for a day of re-visiting Queens View and Rannoch Lodge west of Pitlochry on a glorious 6hr round tourist drive. Every curve of the lochs offered another stunning view, and the road from Aberfeldy to Crieff gave us spectacular towering hillsides and my first glimpse of red squirrels as they gambolled across our path.

What a week of contrasts from the fabulous punk sounds of Pussycat at the Dirty Johnsons – who deserve who headline any theatrical edgy festival lineup to the stillness of the River Forth and the clean air of the Tay valley.

Now off to France to be a driver on a course, and to get some grant applications written and launch two nights special audiences for a major Vaults production.

PS – best line of the wedding was from Anna’s other/stepdad “I’ve not so much lost a daughter, as gained a boat” – inspired. Thanks Mark for giving us the best one-liner of the night.




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