Sunday, November 19, 2006

Breezeblock Park, Five Things and books

Well, that's Breezeblock Park over. A little known Willy Russell play first performed, as they all were, at The Everyman in Liverpool in 1975, starring Julie Walters, Sheila Hancock (my character) and Norman Rossington. Three couples within a family live on the same council estate, and the action takes place on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. An extremely funny play, it also has Willy Russell's trademark bittersweet edge, culminating in my character's breakdown. It is also the play that gave Caroline Ahern the idea for the Royle Family, and we were given permission to reprint her letter to Russell in the programme. It went very well, full houses almost every night, and all the women in the cast were given a vibrator as a memento. Don't ask.

I've been tagged by my friend Bernardine Kennedy to reveal Five Little Known Facts about myself. I can't think of any! However, I'll try. I was a stewardess on the last commercial flight out of Israel as the six day war began. (That dates me.) I did hand modelling for Freeman's catalogue. I was asked to be a Playboy Bunny. (And said no.) I was married for a year to a photographer. I can't eat cheese.

Most of those came from my children, because I couldn't remember anything most people didn't already know about me. Well, I say most people - I mean most people I know. And I expect they all know the above facts, too. I'm not proud.

I was delighted with the response to my previous blog about children's books. I've been given lots more to look out for, and reminded of some I'd forgotten. Jenny Haddon mentioned Susan Cooper's Dark Is Rising series, and of course, Diana Wynne-Jones' Chrestomancy series, all of which I've bought for myself during the last few years. My eldest daughter, she of the recent motherhood, who posted first, has, of course, exactly the same taste as I have, except that she also loved Mallory Towers.

Now looking forward to staying in every night and concentrating on finishing and delivering manuscript to publishers by the end of the week. (Oh, yeah?) Bye for now.

3 comments:

Jane Henry said...

Lesley, I wish I'd come to see you! I love Willy Russell. And probably already told you that I had an opportunity to see him doing Shirley Valentine at the Everyman for £1 when the original actress went off sick. I walked past the Everyman every day for weeks always intending to go and see him, and for the life of me can't remember why I didn't. Probably as a student at the time I was skint and even a pound was too much if it meant I couldn't go to the pub. How shallow is that?

Didn't realise Caroline Aherne took inspiration from him.

Glad it went well anyway.

When's your panto? Is it too late to book tickets for the kids?

love Jane
PS - Your five things sound much more fascinating then any of my five things might be!!!

Louise said...

Not sure you ever told me about the bunny invite...
Had completely forgotten about Susan Cooper- they were fantastic books and I remember reading them in bed as a child when I had flu, eating green apples.
Also loved the Little Women series, which I still find surprising; I couldn't stand Amy and she made me want to fling the book across the room (I didn't).
Play was fantastic and very glad I went to see it. I think your slippers were my favourite bit!
L x

That's so pants said...

Really brilliant unknown facts. I hope no one asks me. I'd have to make them up. They would at least be genuinely unknown.