Monday, 30 July 2012


The last week of our tour was in Galway. This was my first trip to Ireland and it was a great week. Another hectic one with a turn around from 1 show to the other everyday. However, we did find time to get out of the theatre and sit by the water to have lunch. On our first day this seemed like an impossibility. For our first tech the cast had to change into their costume trousers and boots as it had rained so heavily on their walk from the accommodation that they were soaked to the skin!

The sails sculpture in Eyre Square which has been covered in squares knitted by local children.

Another lunch by another stretch of water, Galway is a beautiful little city where we were made to feel very welcome.

Galway was heaving with people visiting the Arts Festival and arriving early for a big race meet that began when we left.

Our spare mannequin had a make over,

and Mr C mended the floor, in a supervisory capacity you understand!

Monday, 2 July 2012


It was a really flying visit we paid to Neuss. Or non-stop Neuss as we called it with 5 shows in 3 days.
As Janine is showing - there is always time pose on a giant bee! The techies arrived late afternoon and headed to the town square for supper before a drink or two at the Okie Dokie which is close to the theatre.

The town was very pleasant and just a short walk from both the hotel and theatre. A round trip from the hotel through the town square past the theatre and back to the hotel would take around half an hour. I walked this way to work each day to pick up a sandwich from the bakers and some fruit from the market for a picnic lunch in the theatre grounds.

This is the Rathaus (town hall) where the crew took us for lunch on get in day.

A church just off the town square.

The theatre in Neuss is based on the Globe theatre in London and is situated along the side of the racecourse. It was a great space to play and the audiences were all very enthusiastic despite Germany playing in an important World Cup match on our opening night.

Keeping Bridget company on a trip to the Waschsalon.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Shaghai - Day 5

On our final morning in Shanghai I walked through an area parallel to 'Oxford Street' (Nanjing Road) known for book shops, art supplies and stationery and picked up a few presents for friends.

After my morning's browsing I met up with Bridget for lunch at a local restaurant around the corner from our hotel. For our after dinner coffee we went to the Raddison. This hotel was a couple of doors down from ours and considerably taller. On the top of the hotel is a large round 'spaceship'. This houses a restaurant and bar. As we arrived after the lunch service had finished we had the lower floor of the spaceship to ourselves for a cup of coffee and a 360 degree view of Shanghai. (If we'd been there for lunch the restaurant would have been gently revolving) We were so impressed by the view that once we'd met up with Laura we went back so that she could have a look too.

You can see how the older areas are being overshadowed by the high rise developments.

This is the People's Square, the Shanghai equivalent of Tiananmen Square. You can't see it in the picture but in the top left hand corner is Marks and Spencers!

A birds eye view along Nanjing Road to Pudong.

It really does seem as though everything can and will be carried by bike. I've seen dogs, brick a brac, a lady on a garden lounger, cages of rabbits and ducks and here a ladder. I'd love to see someone doing this in London!

After our visit to the space ship the three of us went to visit the Shanghai Propaganda Poster Art Centre. This was an amazing collection of propaganda posters and art housed in a basement of a block of flats - which in itself made it interesting to find, despite helpful directions from other members of the company who had already visited! It started as a personal collection by the owner before he created the museum. It was fascinating to see the development of these kind of posters and I would recommend a visit to anyone travelling to Shanghai. 

Off to the metro and the theatre for our final show.

After the get out a quick stop at the Raddison bar - in the top half of the spaceship - for a nightcap and a farewell to Shanghai and our Chinese adventure. 

Friday, 15 June 2012

Shanghai - Day 3

Toady Bridget, Laura and I went off to explore in the French Concession, the area that the theatre is in. We started by taking the underground to Damuqiao Road. Here you can see the modern high rises.

You just can't escape! Janine trumped us though - she spotted a Tesco Express!

In the older area of the French Concession the housing becomes more low rise. The streets have lots of trees lining them, for which we were very grateful to the French settlers!

We stopped for coffee in this rather swanky cafe. This area had been redeveloped recently. The former knitting factory was now some nice shops and flats with excellent green credentials (at least according to the guide book). Good coffee and cake though.

Russian Orthodox Mission Church.

Laura's guide book recommended a visit to the lobby of this hotel. The Mansion Hotel has a beautiful Art Deco and most importantly nicely air conditioned lobby. We had a little look inside and tried out the sofa's which were very comfy, and that air con was deliciously cool. We reluctantly left before someone realised we weren't meant to be there and got thrown out

We walked down more leafy streets, had a nose in a few shops heading in the general direction of the theatre.

We saw this sign on the entrance to an apartment block close to the Conservatory of Music. Having lived in a Halls of Residence with musicians I love it! After the show we were taken to Lost Heaven Lounge by the British Council (one of our sponsors) for drinks.

This was an amazing bar on the roof top of a building just off the Bund.