r u e, we. as


Neil Bartlett brings his highly acclaimed show 'A Vision of Love Revealed in Sleep“ to Edinburgh and Glasgow this fortnight.


nineteenth-century painter Simeon Solomon. persecuted for his

Robert Dawson Scott explains the secret of reaching the peak ofyour career. Don’t volunteer for anything or you’ll be on the slippery slope . . .

It is as if a mist has been lifted from before my eyes. I can see clearly now. as the man said. The reason why there are still so many people unemployed is because they will keep applying for jobs. Time was when eagerness and commitment were key words in the job-hunters‘ vocabulary. These days if you actually get as far as writing in you apparently disqualify yourself. No-one who applied to be Chief Executive ofChannel 4 got the job.

4955M; "‘

? homosexuality. see Theatre


1 Teafro de Existentiale. alias Charrnian Hughes. brings

g:i§'3‘l§;23mm Eye : her unconventional cabaret 1mm. mum, ! act to The Traverse Theatre. . Edinbumh' pm show ~ Edinburgh this month. Her portray; the , show takes a rather

irreverent look at performance art. See Cabaret Listings.


No-one who asked to be the new editor of The Listener got a look in. Michael Grade and Alan (‘oren respectively had to be coerced and cajoled into their new roles. All those ofyou who have applied to be the new director of Mayfest forget it. Mind you anyone who wants that job probably should be disqualified ifonly the grounds of mental instability. To know what you‘re letting yourself in for there and still want to do it suggests a person not in full possession of their marbles.

There‘s something to be said for this system. certainly when it comes to politics. Anyone who is so keen on getting power that he or she is prepared to go through the grisly process of winning votes and elections is clearly not fit to be trusted with so much as the central heating control.

()n the other hand. selection according to ability and suitability for the job in question does have its place. They would, for instance never have given the job of introducing Ski Sunday to David



Brown-eyed and boyish. John Collee isthe sort of doctoryou hope won‘t notice your warts. With two medical thrillers and a string of BBC scripts from Bergeracto Weekending stitched to his belt. he‘sfar from yourrun-of-the-ward GP. ‘l'm rather schizophrenic.’ he admits happily. A lucra'ive. notto mention appealinn. quality in his case. Brought up in Edinburgh in a starcth white-coated family. his lathera professorol medicine at the University and half his relations in the profession. there was never much doubtwhich way his careerwould go. But reservations set in early. “Three years into medicine you begin to seethe inevitability of it all. the turthertraining and specialisation. the years stretching ahead. . .‘

Taking six months out to i write his first novel. Kingsley's Touch. ‘a serious comment on the world of hospitals’. set in Edinburgh. he was looked on by his colleagues as something of an idiot. Like PD. James and many others. his writing stems largely from guilt. and his latest novel. Paper Mask (Viking £10.95) ‘was an attempt to answerthe question “is my life worthwhile?" ‘What conclusions did he come up with? ‘Absolutely none!‘ but he doesn't seem too worried.

Forall his early scepticism. Coffee is very much the traditional doctor. talking enthusiastically

Vine had such criteria been tried. Ski .S‘imday.which returns with its 100th issue this Sunday. is an extraordinary programme on BBC 2 which is watched by four million people. The best guess at the number ofskiers in Britain is just over 1.5 million. The other 2.5 million think it‘s a sit-com you know. Mum. the one with the commentator who always gets it wrong. Even Mr Vine himself admits that he was probably ‘the only person around with the boots and the jacket‘ when the programme first started.

He is not a skier; ‘No bloody fear. 1 prefer water skiing. You can get twice round the bay in the Bahamas before the ice melts in your glass.‘ But he shrugs off suggestions that he doesn‘t know what he‘s talking about just because he doesn‘t do it himself. ‘People in the teams ask me for advice. I tell them. I don‘t know anything about it but they say that I see many more skiers in the practice runs than they do because they‘re only-watching their own teams.‘ Apparently he once told Steve

about the sense of community and achievement he‘sfound recently when working in Madagascar. in contrast with the anonymity of British hospital work. 'Wfiling isa fantastic luxury. but it isn‘t real life. You've got to recognise that.‘ For Matthew Harris. anti—hero of Paper Mask. medicine isn‘t real life either. A poignant questioning story of an intelligent man's quest for identity. Paper Mask is also a sharp critique of the medical scene. Under Coffee‘s lancet-touch another myth is ground into dust. ‘There‘s an awful lot of posturing in medicine. a lot of deliberate obfuscation. but it‘s something we should all know about.‘ Hospital porterHarristakes the same line. Passing himself off as a highly qualified doctor. he bluffs his way into a casualty post and problems. butwith a convenientand glamorous nurse's help mastersthe basics and rouses remarkably little


however. ‘I think I‘ve said all I want to about medicine.‘ and his horizons are widening. ‘l wantto write a film script. and doa bigger novel.‘ His next may be it. Called The Big. and set in Madagascar. ‘it'sa political thrilleraboutfhe relationship between multi-national oil companies and a small African government.‘ As it mimicking an embryonic blurb. his voice deepens: “Part love story. part adventure. spanning several continents. . .‘Just


This tomight Snow White. together with wicked witch.

assorted dwarves. and some of Disney'stinest cartoons. returns yet again to Scottish cinemas. The perennial favourite is now fifty years old. but shows no signs of age. The film still contains one of the scariest scenes ever put into a motion picture. The wicked witch must be etched into millions of childhood memories. See Film Listings.

I Having made his point.

l’odborski (the ('andian hotshot of a couple of years back) to take a different line on a difficult jump and Podborski came in second. Whether that would have been first without David‘s advice we will never know. And anyway. ‘no-one ever asks Harry (‘arpenter why he never got in the ring with Muhammad Ali.‘ Well. no. David. but no-one‘s asking you to race down the Lauberhorn either. (Actually a couple of my skiing friends are. because they think he might not reach the bottom. but that‘s by the way.) It's just that you know and we know that you can‘t tell very much about whether someone‘s going fast or not from a TV monitor. Vine only sees the same pictures as we do apart from the last 100 metres or so of the course which must make life pretty difficult. ls he downhearted‘.’ Not a bit of it. ‘People don‘t want to know all that technical stuff anyway. They're there to watch these mad bastards come out of a hut at the top of the mountain and get to the bottom as fast as possible. It’s dangerous. that‘s what matters.‘

4'I‘he List 27 Nov— 10 Dec 1987