Yes, it's me, back from an all-too-short wallow in the ponds of idleness. I bought 6kg of books, read some of them, looked at lots of visual art, ate a wide variety of interesting food and didn't go near a theatre. Which can't be said about my time since my return, which has been rather theatre-rich. Yes, I've been going to the FRINGE. Of which more in ensuing days. My brain is still lounging by the virtual swimming pool, but I'm sending urgent telegrams and am hoping for some contact soon.
Some stop-gap notices while I await anxiously the return of consciousness, because there's no shortage of excellent online reading. First, I have uploaded a new issue of my literary ezine, Masthead, which is a special issue featuring an anthology of poems by poets from Poetryetc, a listserv founded by John Kinsella in 1997, and which I ran for many years. If I say so myself, it's pretty damn fine.
And over the past month or so, the blogs have been waking up - there's some excellent and thought-provoking reading around the traps, and what follows is a very partial list of what's been interesting me in the blogosphere lately, and which I suggest to you as great places to land your cursor. Those perennial faves of mine, George Hunka at Superfluities Redux and Chris Goode at Thompson's Bank of Communicable Desire, have been pounding the keyboards with all manner of interesting posts. Andrew Haydon at Postcards from the Gods has been uploading reviews like a maniac, as well as noting Andy Field's new blog, meaning Andy, one of the interesting British bloggers and up-and-coming young theatre artists, hasn't deserted us yet.
Closer to home, there's a promising new blog called Long Sentence No Suggestions, which features this startling and brave post from Martin confronting some of the demons we all have to face in this game. Which brings me, by demonic association, to the Fringe, well-summarised by Richard Watts, where the bloggers have it covered. Michael Magnusson is blogging heroically at On Stage and Walls in Melbourne, with extensive coverage of opera and music as well as theatre, and is currently heading, flags bravely flying, into the turbulent Fringey whirlpool. Watch too for the reviews on Jana's blog mono no aware. Some - ie me - are heading less bravely than others, but even so my schedule next week is as packed as I can manage. But I am a frail flower, especially when I look around and see what others are doing. No one, however, is showing such devotion to the Cause as Born Dancin'. As the man himself puts it:
So I made a calendar of 83 shows I thought I could get to at this year’s Melbourne Fringe (launched yesterday). I mentioned this to a friend and he said “Hey, it’s like Around the Fringe in 80 Shows”. Oh, I think you dropped something. WAIT, IS THAT A GAUNTLET? I accept the challenge. I’ll try to write up 80 capsule reviews here in the next three weeks.
THRILL! at the SIZZLING NEW ART I encounter!!!
MARVEL! at the pointless AMBITION of my task!!!
GASP! as my writing becomes increasingly erratic and HYSTERICAL!!!!
SKIM! the reviews for the BEST BITS!!!
83 shows? What manner of madness is this? I suggest volunteers ought to be at the ready in three weeks' time to pick up the bits. And I dips me lid.