Friday, December 19, 2014


Raphael opened with his tale held over from last month, How Childe Rowland Saved Burd Ellen from The Dark Tower – well worth waiting for! Then Suzanne revealed the story behind the Christmas Fairy's position at the top of the Christmas Tree. After that, Maddie [one of four tellers in the evening who did so] picked up the official theme, Silver Screen, and told [despite her protests that it was out of her comfort zone] a very eloquent and moving version of Percy Adlon's Bagdad Café. Then Graham closed the first half with The White Line Man, also set, mysteriously and evocatively, in one of those tiny townships that exist alongside US Transcontinental Highways – until someone builds a newer, faster by-pass, and then they die... To show us what we'll be missing, now he's no longer the front man, and will, with Val, only be an occasional visitor, Graham also played guitar to cover the queuing for coffee and the slow resumption of normal service after the break. The second half began with Laura and Mike's tribute to Graham, which purported to show the origin of his storytelling activity in a traumatic boyhood experience at Plaistow's Central Cinema, thereby sticking to the official theme. Jill, assisted by Valerie French on drums and audience members on other percussion, told The Baron and the Werewolf. Then we gave Graham and Val their Farewell Presents, and Taprisha, assisted by some delicate puppets, also stuck to the official theme, and told Lili [1953, with Leslie Caron and Mel Ferrer], which provided a suitably moving emotional climax to the evening.

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