Hi there, how is it going? I hope you have had a great couple of weeks. Mine have been pretty full on as ever. And they have included me doing something that I have not done for six years. Which I will tell you about shortly. Unfortunately the Radio Rocks event that I was due to be helping to host last Sunday in aid of Stoke Mandeville Hospital Radio was postponed until December. At this stage we are working on dates but I am not sure if I will be available to appear at the re-arranged concert or not at the moment. The weather has been good though still. So nobody can complain that we did not have a summer this year. Talking of which well done to the England Cricket team on winning the Ashes. It just adds to what has already been a great summer of sport for the United Kingdom.
Before last Tuesday the last film I had seen at the cinema was The Simpson’s Movie back in the summer of 2007. Which I actually went and saw one afternoon all by myself when I was on holiday. Just for the record I did really enjoy it and kept the cost of the visit down by not having any Pick ‘n’ Mix. On Tuesday evening I went and watched Alan Partridge – Alpha Papa with a friend of mine, weirdly at the same cinema as my last visit. And despite it being announced as the number one selling film of the week in the UK on that day, there were only actually about ten people in the showing watching it. Which meant we had a whole row to ourselves with nobody sitting anywhere near us. Now I am not saying I was excited about seeing the film but I made sure we were in our seats even before the pre-film adverts started. To be honest it was a film I really wanted to see because I am a big fan of the broadcaster that is Alan Partridge and also with me working in radio it is something I know a lot about and wanted to see how they dealt with it on the big screen. It is a very funny film brilliantly written, produced and directed. Although the focus is a parody of a radio station used very much for comedy effect. It is strange and possibly slightly worrying how much of it is very close to what can and sometimes does happen in those situations in real life radio stations. I am not sure who helps advise Steve Coogan and the team but it is clearly somebody who knows the radio industry very well. It is the best British comedy of year. So I would definitely recommend you see it if you get chance. If you like the TV show’s you will love the film. Classic Partridge. So bad, he is good!
I have been lucky enough to meet a lot of amazing people over the years working in the media and I always like to see people I know doing well. I first met Ben Langley when I was working at a radio station in Somerset and he was starring in the Pantomime in Yeovil. Which he did for most of the year’s that I was there working. So we would see each other pretty much every Christmas. He would help us turn on the Christmas Lights in town, come in for interviews about the shows and we would always have a good laugh and enjoy a few drinks after the Panto press launch night. He then came to the local theatre with a new show that he had written himself. Which he also performed in with a great cast of actors that I also knew. Well now I am delighted to announce that next month that show is about to embark on a big national tour starring Joe Pasquale, Ben Langley himself and Andrew Fettes. “Ha Ha Holmes and the Hound of the Baskervilles” will be at a theatre near you soon including at the Octagon Theatre in Yeovil on the 9th & 10th September, The Wycombe Swan on the 14th September and the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre on the 16th November. If you get chance go and long and see it. It is madcap fun with a great cast and will have you laughing out loud. Good luck to Ben and the team, go and get them mate! http://www.hahaholmes.com/
Sometimes I wonder if I am too competitive for my own good although in my defence I do come from a very competitive family, as this story proves. Last weekend I took advantage of the good weather and went to a BBQ at my Uncle’s house. It was really good to catch up with everyone, the food was excellent and we were enjoying a few relaxing drinks in the sun. But then I find out that my uncle has a table tennis table at the top of his garden. So within minutes we are up there just having a friendly knockabout between us. Which then suddenly becomes more serious as we both discover with are both not bad at it. Then before you know it we are joined by the rest of the guests and we are in the process of drawing the first round of the table tennis competition, that is about to start. So then everything else is completely forgotten about and it is game on. Cue about two hours of shouting, arguing, laughing and aggression. As we all play each other to find out who is the best. With plenty of rows starting along the way as wives beats husbands and as sisters beat bothers. Finally it was down to me and the Uncle whose house and table it was in the final and disappointingly I lost. Which then completely spoiled what would have been a lovely relaxing afternoon and turned it into the day I was runner up in the table tennis competition, not the day I went to a family party. Fear not I will practice and come back stronger for next year’s rematch.
One of my best mate’s is getting married later this year. So over the last couple of week’s with his guidance we have been putting together the plans for his Stag Do. Which is going to be a really fun and nice day by all accounts, as they should be. He basically just wanted it to include football, food and comedy. Which are three of my favourite things in the world. So I am very much looking forward to it. I am also impressed by how organised we are as the event itself does not even happen until October. But we know exactly what the plan is for the whole day to the second already. Although let us just put that down to my skills as a top producer shall we.
I am still doing some work with the FA at Wembley Stadium assisting with their Tour Operation. The place really does come alive when there are big events on. With the Community Shield last weekend and the England against Scotland game this week just gone. The way they dress and change the whole internal look and feel of the stadium for every match is fantastic. As is the speed in which they do it. There is also something a little bit magical standing in the England Dressing Room the morning after a big game when you know all the biggest names in football would have been there the night before. Great fun.
In other news I am still waiting to confirm the exact date I will be filming my cameo appearance in the short film I will be appearing in but it is expected that it will be by the end of this month or early next month at the latest. As soon as it has been done I will bring you the behind the scene photos of the shoot. Despite the delays to this project it is still hoped that the film will be released before the end of year.
All the best to my mates Dez Kay and Andy Holmes who are hosting the Hobble on The Cobble music event with The Searchers headlining in Aylesbury on Sunday 25th August. I saw The Searchers live last year and they were brilliant, still a class act. I am planning on going along to this event myself to watch some of the bands in action.
And finally the football season starts again this weekend and as a Spurs fan the pre season has been interesting to say the least. We are still no nearer knowing if Gareth Bale will start the season in North London or Madrid yet. I am just hoping for a good year where we win more games than we lose and win a trophy. I have no expectations as I have made that mistake before and it is the hope that destroys you ultimately. Good luck Tottenham.
Have fun and we will catch up again in a couple of weeks. Cheers Neil.