Had by art

Had some great shows with City Impro at the Brighton Fringe.

As mentioned, I spent some of the time handing out flyers dressed in an Edwardian “swimsuit”. If you weren’t lucky enough to spot me, here I am (on the right) suitably attired with another City Impro member, Vasek:

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As I pulled on the swimsuit for the first time, I recalled the story told by Patti Smith in Just Kids about her last visit to see Robert Mapplethorpe in hospital before he died:

I stood by his bed and took his hand … Suddenly he looked up and said, ‘Patti, did art get us?’ Perhaps it did but no one could regret that. Only a fool would regret being had by art; or a saint.

We (City Impro) have a show tonight at the Rosemary Branch Theatre. Details here if you want to come along.

Reading: The Incomplete Tim Key, Tim Key

Curb

​When I drove home every day, because we were improvising it, I’d think, “Would this scene be better if I’d written it?” And 98 percent of the time, I’d thought “No.” It was better improvised. You could just get to places that you couldn’t get to writing. But the editing is really hard. Compared to a written show, where you’re doing two to three takes and they’re all the same. For this show, every take is different.

Larry David on the early days of Curb Your Enthusiasm. 

Season 9 starting 1 October.

Quietly Quietly

I missed Detectorists (written and directed by Mackenzie Crook) when it was first shown in 2014. The BBC are currently showing the first series again and I’m glad I’ve caught it this time around. It’s a show that doesn’t try for massive laughs; it just goes about its comedy in an understated way. It shares a similar tone and pace with The Trip and, for those who remember it, Sean Lock’s 15 Storeys High. I’m hoping it’ll be like the former rather than the latter when the question of a third series comes up.

A Joke Endures

I’ve just finished reading volumes III and IV of Tristram Shandy. Towards the end of volume IV there’s a part about Grandmothers:

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Forward 256 years, to Series 9 Episode 6 of Jerry Seinfeld’s Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, Bob Einstein tells a similar joke (around 12m05s).

Isn’t that great. For a joke to be able to survive that long there’s something to be said, I think, about the joke, about comedy, about us, etc. etc.