Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"Crack The Code Next Year!"

On Saturday, Friends of Lit Fest held a bustling Book Swap at Town Hall Square. This is an annual event, when money is raised for Book Aid International ...while at the same time, passers-by and Saturday shoppers learn plenty about the coming Festival. This year was chilly but dry; we had lots of visitors, lots of interest, lots of chat... and some of us now have a pile of extra books tottering beningly besides our beds.

And ALL kinds of books tumbled in on Saturday....ranging from academic literary criticism to cook books, art books, poetry books, hobby books galore....to Best Seller Chart Toppers and literary paperbacks...to childrens picture books and children's comic strips...but Dan Brown's " Da Vinci Code" appeared most often....it seems 8 copies were spotted ( lingering mysteriously on our stall) all at one time...
Come Next Year!

Monday, September 21, 2009

" Enjoying Autumn Highlights..."

Leaves are turning...and pages will be turning.....
Autumn appears to be quite the Lit Fest Season in the UK.
There's Ilkley, Cheltenham, Knutsford.......AND of course, there's Chester Lit Fest ( http://www.chesterfestivals.co.uk/ ) which features leading lights in a variety of worlds...eg. CarolAnn Duffy, Sir Richard Eyre, Michael Mansfield QC, Kate Atkinson, Paddy Ashdown, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall .....plus a host of NEW FACES...talented writers we expect to hear more of....incl. Jayne Joso, Paul Dowswell, John Sam Jones, along with local poets and writers, with workshops and readings to suit everyone.
Have a look at the website but best of all, visit the Festival from 3rd until 18th October. Help Chester Lit Fest celebrate its 21st Birthday in style.
SNAP: Autumn in Slovenia ( Oct 2006)

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

"Magical Mr Malone!"

Gareth Malone is going places. He really is.

At birth, Gareth Malone received Charisma in excess. His fairy godmother clearly upped his dosage.....and NOW I bet she's fluttering her wings with glee!

Choirmaster Malone is 34 but looks about 17. Recently he's been in South Oxhey ( a housing estate outside London) starting a fantastic Community Choir with over 200 singers, all local folk, including lots who had only ever sung in their showers.....

The choir's 1st performance last November took place on a dreary Saturday in the local shopping centre....in front of hundreds of people who, in a matter of moments, became gob-smacked with delight.
This crowd saw their neighbours singing starry-eyed. This crowd saw their mums/uncles/sisters/grandads singing with a confidence they could scarcely believe.
AND this crowd also heard and saw both rhythm and harmony... in BOTH the music and in the community feeling Malone has so brilliantly created.....

***AND afterwards, I wondered: WAS Sarah, Duchess of York, watching this wonderful programme??! ***

" The Choir: Unsung Town" is on BBC 2 again next Tuesday at 9pm.