Skip to main content

Marc Almond

HMV Picture House, Edinburgh
4 stars
The two cuddly toys perched side by side on a stool at the front of the 
stage don't really fit in with the mirror ball and after-hours pink 
lighting that sets the mood with the sort of contradictions which has 
defined Marc Almond's career, from the kitchen-sink sleaze of Soft Cell 
to torch singing drama queen and beyond. Last year he performed at the 
Traverse Theatre in Ten Plagues, a darkly dissonant song cycle by 
playwright Mark Ravenhill and composer Conor Mitchell. For this current 
Pop Troubadour, Hits and More Tour, Almond has lightened up 
considerably to revisit a back catalogue that stretches out over more 
than thirty years.

He opens with the call to arms of The Stars We Are, a sweepingly rich 
scene-setter that already sounds triumphant. Sporting a shimmery black 
shirt that billows as he strikes poses, Almond is backed by a piano-led 
band augmented by accordionist and larger than life support act Baby 
Dee, last seen in these parts at Arika's Instal festival in Glasgow. 
All of this lends a sprightliness to a show that flits from hit to hit, 
with Almond energised by the warmth of the response.

A mid-set Jacques Brel section sees Almond accompanied by solo piano on 
If You Go Away, before the band rejoin him to gallop through Jackie and 
a countrified The Days of Pearly Spencer. Something's Gotten Hold of My 
Heart is dedicated to the late Gene Pitney, before the show climaxes 
with a Soft Cell trilogy of Tainted Love, What? and Say Hello Wave 
Goodbye. For a version of T-Rex's Hot Love, Almond let his hair down for the 
cuddliest of finales.

The Herald, October 1st 2012

ends

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Art School Dance Goes On Forever – Snapshots Of Masters Of The Multiverse

Intro – Snapshots – Deaf School

1

In 1980, the same year as the Manchester band, Magazine, released a 7
inch single called A Song From Under The Floorboards – a three verse
and chorus distillation of Dostoyevsky's novel, Notes From Underground
– an art school scandal occurred.

This scandal took place in Liverpool, and was based around a project
called the Furbelows, although it became better known in the Liverpool
Echo and other organs that reported it as the Woolly Nudes.

The Furbelows, or Woolly Nudes, were a group of artists who had come
out of Liverpool College of Art, who, dressed in grotesque woolly
costumes which featured knitted approximations of male and female
genitalia, made assorted public interventions around the city centre as
kind of living sculptures acting out assorted narratives.

The Furbelows project had been funded by what was then Merseyside Arts
Association, and, after the participants were arrested and taken to
court on obscenity charges after what…

Peter Brook – The Prisoner

Peter Brook is no stranger to Scotland, ever since the guru of European and world theatre first brought his nine-hour epic, The Mahabharata, to Glasgow in 1988. That was at the city’s old transport museum, which by 1990 had become Tramway, the still-functioning permanent venue that opened up Glasgow and Scotland as a major channel for international theatre in a way that had previously only been on offer at Edinburgh International Festival.
Brook and his Paris-based Theatre des Bouffes du Nord company’s relationship with Tramway saw him bring his productions of La Tragedie de Carmen, La Tempete, Pellease et Mellisande, The Man Who…, and Oh Les Beaux Jours – the French version of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days – to Glasgow.
Thirty years on from The Mahabharata, Brook comes to EIF with another piece of pan-global theatre as part of a residency by Theatre des Bouffes du Nord, which Brook has led since he decamped to Paris from London in the early 1970s. The current Edinburgh residency has alr…

Romeo And Juliet - Shakespeare's Globe Comes to Glasgow

Open-air Shakepeares are a summer-time perennial of the theatre calendar, attracting picnicking audiences as much as midges. More often than not, such romps through the grass are frothy, heritage industry affairs designed to be accompanied by strawberries and cream and not to be taken too seriously. Shakespeare’s Globe theatre company look set to change such perceptions when they open their outdoor tour of Romeo And Juliet in Glasgow next week as part of the West End festival.

For the two young actors taking the title roles of the doomed lovers, it will also be something of a homecoming. Richard Madden and Ellie Piercy both studied in Glasgow prior to turning professional. Indeed, Madden has yet to graduate from the acting course at RSAMD, and, as well as facing the pressures of playing such a meaty role in close proximity to the audience, will have the added anxiety of being assessed and graded by his tutors.

“This is the end of my third year,” says Madden following a Saturday mornin…