LUCE TALK Robert
Dawson Scott reports
Luminaries of the arts and media world continue to take the high road. or rather the high shuttle. up to Glasgow - with greater or lesser degrees ofenthusiasm — to see the city’s wonderful scoop. The Mahabharata. One recent visitor was Mrs Rupert Murdoch (though not Mr) returning to her roots in Kirkintilloch. She flew over from New York specially to see it which. since the show has already been on in New York. is the best definition of conspicuous consumption 1 have seen recently.
Another one was was Richard Luce. Arts Minister though neither he nor M rs Murdoch managed more than one play of the trilogy. However. even before seeing the performance. he was impressed by its remarkable venue. the swiftly transformed ()Id 'I‘ransport Museum. As we were able to inform the Minister. the future ofthe building is currently a hot political potato in Glasgow; it was only rescued from the demolition squads by the decision to stage 'l'hc ; Mahabharatathereandthenonly temporarily because it is quite likely to fall down of its own accord unless somebody spends some money on it. i Now there’s a rapidly growing ( )ld i 'l‘ransport Museum Supporters l (‘lub. led by the man who was largely ' responsible for getting the Mahabharata to (ilasgow. Neil Wallace. the ('ity‘s depute director of Festivals. He and his chums point out that the place would offer a wonderful and unique new theatre space in Britain and Mr l.uce. to everyone's surprise. expressed a : similar view saying he would very
much like to see the building survive. 1
Money. ofcourse. is still the main problem. but director Peter Brook. who is very much taken with both the building and the city. can be persuasive. He pointed out to Mr Luce that the cost ofbuilding this
sort of experimental space — a facility
much needed in this country — would be severalfold that ofmaintaining the current building. ‘You have to talk to these people in their own language. . . ‘he said wilily.
Mr Luce wasn‘t finished with his revelations. Speaking exclusively to The List he expressed a hope to lend government support to the celebrations in 1990. when Glasgow becomes City ofCulture. the first hint that central government has caught on to the opportunity that 1990 offers. He did not specify what form support might take and no-one has yet mentioned hard cash but he did say that the opening would certainly be ‘more spectacular than Berlin‘s this year.‘
Meanwhile. considering the
f exigencies ofa nine-hour
performance and sell-out houses. the ushers and security staffat the Old
3 Transport Museum seem to be
having a pretty comfortable time of it. ‘We get the odd fainter' one veteran of a thousand crowd control situations confided during the all-nighter last weekend. "The biggest problem is waking people up and getting them to go .'
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO . . .
Have you seen Peter ("Tapaldi's and Elaine Collins' The Tom (mdSumnrv
10 Show which is back at the Tron this week? It‘s a send-up’of
4 The List 13 - 26 May iris?“
American TV evangelism done as an actual ‘l‘V' broadcast show using the audience as the TV audience. Very topical. very funny. (‘an‘t imagine why somebody didn‘t think ofit before. really. Except ofcourse somebody did. ln December 1983 Wildcat recorded a show for ('hannel 4 called Bless My Soul which featured a send tip of American TV evangelism show done as an actual 'l‘\" broadcast. it was written by David Maclcnnan (yes. him again) Dave Anderson and Sean llardie w ho also produced it (he was one of the duo that gave us Noll/1e Nine u'( fur/v News a while back) and it was duly transmitted in March 1984. starring. among others. one Peter ('apaldi Oddly enough there is no credit in the current 'l‘ron show for anyone other than Peter (’apaldi and lilaine(‘ollins. ‘(‘onccivcd. written and performed by. . .’ it says. Pete says it'scompletely different and he's been interested in the subject tor ages. 'l‘he only similarity. he said. was that it was a send-up of American 'l'\’ cy angelism done as an actual ’I‘V broadcast. But isn‘t that lust the same as. . . oh. never mind.
THE YELLOW CARD
Who’d be a theatre critic'.’ .loycc
McMillan is Scotland's scourge of the first nights regularly firing her cogent and feisty prose off to the (iuardian. She is quick to sniffout humbug and sloppy work from people who ought to be able to do better and not afraid to tell the world about it in graphic terms. And since there‘s a lot of it about and people don‘t like being found out she is. it has to be said. pretty unpopular with the theatre world. Nowhere more so than the lair ofthe Wildcats. ller notice for The (‘eln’c Story enraged Wildcat’s director David Macl.ennan so much that w hen she went back to the Pavilion 'l‘heatre to interview him for the l3l3("s Kaleidoscope programme he advanced upon her in a manner that can only be described as hostile. instructed her to get out of the theatre. and informed her that he was consulting his lawyers with a view to taking legal proceedings against her. No writs have yet been received but you have the opportunity to see battle renewed on Scottish 'l‘elevision's .lIuy/evr (8'8 programme this Friday night when they join the queue of people trying to sort out whether popular culture can be art as well. A seat in the stalls sounds like a must.
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