Saturday, 4 January 2014

Theatrical Adventures

As the college vacation draws to a close I've been taking the opportunity to get out and about. For the last few days we have been in Bristol, where I did my undergraduate degree ten years ago. We caught up with old faces and haunts, sampled some fruit beers at a micro brewery and frequented a few of the best second hand bookshops. I picked up this guide to Oxford just on the off chance that the diocese are mad enough not to keep me next year and I have to leave my beloved city (sob!).

A piece of my heart is definitely in Bristol so it was wonderful to be back and even to mull over perhaps heading back there one day. That is one of the best aspects of this way of life for me. We anticipate many moves ahead which, though involving the sadness of separation, also means the excitement of new places - or perhaps even back to old ones. It was also great to reflect on how far things have come since my time in Bristol. My favourite quote of the trip was from my room mate of ten years ago who said I was the least likely person from Uni to have ended up a Vicar! Claim to fame! Or at least a testament to the way of God to use the most unlikely of people!

After Bristol I hopped on the bus to London to see the Royal Shakespeare Company perform Richard II staring one David Tennant. After performing my own standard trick of emerging from the tube station in completely the wrong direction and so walking an extra couple for miles for funsies, I found the Barbican, and my good chum Lou, waiting for me. The performance was spectacular with all the usual ingenious set design of the RSC. David Tennant just lit up the stage. It was hard to even compare him to any other role he had been in before as he so inhabited the character. Even a foolish and selfish young King became likeable in all his fallibility.

I always find a trip to the theatre so inspiring. There is nothing like simply seeing people live in front of you bringing a story to life. To pour themselves into something, and even better into those ancient words full of beauty and meaning, and do it so well. Acting has never been my calling. I had a single ill fated performance in secondary school where I forgot my lines and just stood on the stage repeating the only line I remembered. But to see people put their all into something, to be fantastic in their work, it inspires me in my own work to shoot for the best.

I also got to crack out my old Handy Volume Shakespeare from 1892, swoon!

All in all, a good few day. Ah holidays! Can't they just last forever?!

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