The King’s Consort, Bach and Vivaldi Violin Concertos, Wigmore Hall, 31 December 2007

Kings Consort 31 Dec 2007

We’d made a bit of a tradition of going to the new years eve concert at the Wigmore Hall and see in the new year quietly at the flat if we liked the look of the concert. We certainly liked the look of this one when we booked it, many months before.

Between us booking it and the concert date, Robert King of the eponymous King’s Consort was jailed for indecent assault. Unaccustomed as we were to such occurrences in our favourite baroque ensembles, we wondered what might happen to our concert. It turned out that Matthew halls, the harpsichordist, took over as the director temporarily and would lead our concert.

It all felt a bit odd and of course the programme was silent on the matter of Robert King’s absence, but still it was a good concert if I recall correctly. I can’t find any reviews and the Wigmore Hall archive stubs don’t go back that far. But they are a very accomplished group of musicians and they attract some top notch soloists, so the quality of the performances wasn’t really a surprise.

Moore at Kew, 30 December 2007

Henry Moore at Kew - "Oval with points" and Palm House
© Copyright David Hawgood 2007, licensed for reuse under a Creative Commons Licence

We were keen to see this exhibition over the holiday period, so decided to take advantage of a bright, albeit cold day.

There weren’t many people around, which suited us down to the ground, but probably did little for the fortunes of Kew.

Janie and I have always really liked the Henry Moore stuff. I remember going to see an exhibition in Battersea Park when I was little and crawling through some of the holes in the sculptures. I am delighted to report that there was no hole-crawling activity from me (or Janie) at Kew.

Statement of Regret by Kwame Kwei-Armah, Cottesloe Theatre, 22 December 2007

We really loved Elmina’s Kitchen and also enjoyed Fix Up, both by Kwame Kwei-Armah when we saw them at the Cottesloe, so we thought this one would be a “must see”.

In truth, Statement of Regret was nowhere near as strong as the other plays, although it was worth the trip. This one was about a black think-tank on the brink of folding. Interesting subject matter but the play was a bit all over the place.

Even Michael Billington struggled to like it, even though he wanted to, here.

Philip Fisher in British Theatre Guide agrees – lots of interesting stuff but not a coherent play, here.

Still, Ricky in NYC really enjoyed it, here, and who are we to disagree?

The Art of Lee Miller followed by Dinner at Cambio de Tercio, Z/Yen Staff Christmas Event, 14 December 2007

Ian and Janie

The above picture, from Cambio de Tercio, is possibly the last photo taken of me before I grew my beard over that Christmas break. I suspect I should be “crediting” Monique for it, or possibly Jez given the proximity of the photographer to Sarah.

Earlier in the evening we had all enjoyed a cultural time at the V&A. Most people followed Linda’s lead to The Golden Age of Couture, but I was keen to see photography instead; The Art of Lee Miller. I think Janie had already seen the couture, so some folk joined us for the photographic exhibition.

Cambio de Tercio is a fine restaurant and we indeed had a very fine meal there.

The song that year was, Santa’s Using PropheZy At Z/Yen to the tune of Santa Claus is Coming To town:

SANTA’S USING PROPHEZY AT Z/YEN
(
Sung to the tune of “Santa Claus is Coming To Town”)
He’s made an edict!
He needs to know why!
He’s out to predict,
He will classify;Santa Claus Is Coming To Z/Yen,
PropheZy has done it again,
Santa’s using PropheZy at Z/Yen!

Santa’s making a list,
He’s checking it twice,
His model works out
Who’s naughty and nice.

Santa Claus Is Coming To Z/Yen,
PropheZy has done it again,
Santa’s using PropheZy at Z/Yen!

He predicts when you’re not sleeping,
He predicts when you’re serene,
He computes if you’ve been bad or good,
In Support Vector Machine!

A Santa index,
A Santa Claus game,
A Santa benchmark,
The answer’s the same;

IndeZy is coming to Z/Yen,
ExtZy is coming to Z/Yen,
PropheZy is coming to Z/Yen.

The boys and girls in Z/Yen-land,
Want to know the reason why,
Each name has got to start or end,
With a Z and then a Y.

They’re eaZy to use,
They’re peaZy to play,
No sleaZy abuse,
When done the Z/Yen way;

IndeZy is coming to Z/Yen,
ExtZy is coming to Z/Yen,

Here’s Bruce Springsteen’s version of Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, with lyrics:

I seem to recall that a very good time was had by all that evening.