I have been surprised not to have missed theatre as much as I have missed live concerts, during this Corona year. Or rather – almost a Corona year and a quarter. The last concert we went to was a Chamber Concert at Kings Place, where the accoustics are superb. It was in early March 2020 and I was already very nervous about the possible start of a dangerous pandemic, when other people seemed (to my mind) unreasonably relaxed about it. I don`t remember the programme, but I sat next to a tall and extremely thin young student, who coughed at regular intervals through the whole concert. Both halves. A haunting dry cough that didn`t blend with the music. Did he have a mild case of Covid? I`ll never know.
When the lockdowns began I first of all felt grateful to have writing as an occupation that could be done safely from home, but theatre work seemed less significant. Instead I started a new novel, which I put to one side in September 2020 because I realised that in all likelihood my collection of short stories had found itself a publisher. Since then it has been only stories. I am in the middle of what I think will be the final one in the collection, which will be called `Tell It Not.`
But now, suddenly, plays are on my mind again. I missed seeing actor John Hansler in a one man show at The White Bear – just because we haven`t started to go out yet. Not only because of being careful Covidwise, but also because 9 weeks after his neurosurgery, (a spinal laminectomy, serious stuff,) Jeff still suffers extreme fatigue, balance problems, and intermittent bad pain. Hoping for further improvement, very much hoping.
But suddenly two plays have caught my attention. Although I would love to see Love Letters, with Martin Shaw and Jenny Seagrove, the one I have booked for (call me a coward,) is an online reading on June 11th. A Cold Supper Behind Harrods. Looking forward.