14 January 2012

Celebrity-stalking on the job

Setting off with an optimistic can-do approach to interviewing aspiring mime artists as part of the 2012 Mime Festival, I arrived at Soho Theatre and tried to apply my charm on the man working at the box office. He proved intransigent until I produced my PMA Media Card, whereby it suddenly became possible to gain an audience with members of the cast, perhaps once they were done.

Unfortunately, the Q&A session listed by Time Out was not listed on their schedule, but there were several press passes for the 7.30 showing that had not been used. I pushed, gently and with hand gestures; it transpired that if I waited for long enough in the bar someone might come out and talk to me.

I settled down with my coffee and tried to compile a list of questions for the cast of a play which communicated its message via talking cardboard heads, placards emerging from briefcases and, as the press release described it, 'a tiny Moses with his head full of wisdom.' Was reassured slightly by the fact that their previous projects included the opera Madame Butterfly.

I noticed while browsing the listings and fliers by the bar that the comedy act produced by my corridor-mates at uni, 'Sheeps', was scheduled for later that evening, and was thrilled by the prospect of knowing an actual celebrity. Approaching the lady working at the bar, I asked whether she had met the boys - but she said they had only been performing there for the last two days.

It transpired, however, that a mystery admirer had left a gift for them behind the bar. I was thrilled to have ever been counted as an acquaintance of performers so highly in demand. They were actually on the same bill as Jimmy Carr who was due to perform the next evening.

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