Singers such as Christine Cairns and Donald Maxwell will leature. as will pianists James Clapperton and David Horne. and llautist Anne Evans. ‘The situation lortreelance musicians in Scotland is notterribly good‘ says Spence. ‘mainly small scale music clubs and arts guilds. so most olthese people. including Paul Galbraith. are linding work outside Scotland. Christine Cairns. tor instance. is singing with Andre Previn and the Los Angeles Philharmonic. yet nobody in Scotland really appreciates her.’ Galbraith now plansto move back to Scotland. but apart trom his Dueen‘s Hall recital. it‘s uncertain what lies ahead. ‘He's gained recognition all overthe world. yet he's not really known in Scotland'. says Spence. ‘lt‘s ridiculous really.‘
PS Even without the help at The List. it seems thatall the seats tor that other—as our Editors put it—high brow plucker. Julian
Bream. who plays atthe RSAMD on Thursday17. were sold outweeks ago. It‘s always worth trying lora cancellation. Ring the RSAMD Box Office—041 332 5057. '
Paul Galbraith. Dueen‘s Hall. Edinburgh—Saturday
14 at 7.45pm. See Classical listings.
ll crossing Lou Grantwith Grange Hill sounds like a winning iormula lora children‘s TV series. then Steven Mollat‘s “Press Gang‘ lor Central TV has all the makings ot a hit. The
concept is simple it unlikely -a local newspaper
decides to start a junior
editionto be run by
teenagerslromlocal schools.0nein particularis accusedolmakingthe
paper‘a dumping ground‘
; torits problem pupils.butit I isolcoursethesewho
l l I
provide the most interest. Particularly attractive are kids on the make such as
~ American Spike Thomson.
(Dexter Fletcherol Caravaggio and The Raggedy Rawney). andthe JuniorGazette‘s ad director. Colin (Paul Reynolds). whose curriculum vitae includes selling blank report cards and instant 'howto pass your exams' kits. Butthese and others are more than kept in order by the starol the show. a single-minded Holly Hunter style editor called Lynda Day. admirably played with a
straightlace bynewcomer JuliaSawalha.
Mollat is quickto point outthat he saw Broadcast News only alter he had already writtenten episodes. ‘I was very lucky with Julia. I had been sounding olta Iotabout getting Lynda right because you have to be able to believe that thisleckless bunch at kids will come and work. She is like a cross between a tyrant and a little girl lost— she can be quite monstrous attimes.‘ A tormerteacherwho still
lives in Paisley he saysthe other children are less problematiclhan they could have been. ‘They‘re very nice ‘disruptive‘ children. butthen you get verytew who are really disruptive in schools. You only get one or two psychos.‘ All the same. Press Gang will notbe alraid to switch lrom its at times ratherweakcomedy to tackle realistic problems such as glue-snitling and teenage suicide in later episodes.
The real secret olthe series may be thatMottat once tookthe trouble ot linding out whatteenagers actually watched. ‘I lound even the eleven year-olds were watching notjust things like Grange Hill. but Hill Street Blues. St Elsewhere or Cheers- quite sophisticated programmes.‘ As a result he had discovered the joys ol tryingto manipulate upto live plot-lines within a twenty-live minute episode and has generally created a series which certainly doesn‘t patronise children. and might even appeal to viewers in their lateteens. provided they got overthe psychological hurdle oI tuning in at4.45pm (lirst episode MondayJanuary 16).
Attwenty-seven and up till now a ‘struggling author' Moltatwas giventhe opportunity to create Press Gang by hislather. Bill Mollat. a headmasterwho had the idea in thelirst place. Alter initial doubts. Sandra Hastie at Richmond Films who had sold the idea to Central. allowed Steven a chance and was pleasantly surprised at the standard at his work. Since then Mollat has written a second series and is working on a children‘s soap abouta residential school made up at children whose parents are overseas or who are special cases in some way. Down to earth and clearly still surprised by his sought alter status he says olthe new series: ‘I don‘t know how it will compare really. I'll just write it the only way I can.‘ (Stephanie Billen)
Tim RanSO—Iﬁ and Jane Horrocks in The Dressmaker
JIM O’BRIEN Forhislirsttheatrical leature. a screen version at Beryl Bainbridges's The Dressmaker scripted by our own John McGrath. director Jim O‘Brienlound himselt working on a much smaller scale than he had become usedto. lorhe cametothis intimate WWII dramalrom television blockbusters like Jewel In The Crown and The Monocled Mutineer. Starring Joan Plowright and Billie Whitelaw. thelilm. which opened lastyear's Edinburgh International Film Festival. looks atthe eltectthe arrival at American Gl‘s over here has on the wartime experience ota closely-knitalllemale household in Liverpool. in particularthe developing romantic liaison between theteenage Rita (newcomerJane Horrocks) and soldier boyTim Ransom.
Whilelilmslike Hope And Glory orYanks already seemto have troddenthe same ground. D‘Brien is swiltto pointoutthe inadequacies olsuch easy comparisons. “Durtilm concentrates on howthe Americans shook upthe conservative attitudes that in many areas were current in Britain atthetime.The girl Rita isa product ol Victorian values. she‘s not equipped tor tile. and the warcreatesa new kind oi moralitythatnone olthe lamily are quite ableto cope with. It‘s those kinds ol aspects to it that marks
,e LN¢ "\T
to pick up on. ‘They were
very perceptive in their reading olthe lilm.’ O'Brien reports. ‘because they said that ilwe hadn't been able to get Joan Plowright lorthe part ol the stern matriarch. then MargaretThatcher could have played the role
% justas well!‘ (Trevor Johnston)
It is a surprise to hear stand-up comedian Gerry Sadowitz claim to be good at something. He thinks his
recent concert video was
‘shite‘ and his cartoons
barely worthy ol comment.
‘I don't make any money Irom them. ljust do themlor my own amusement.‘ Magic is dillerent. ‘l'm tentimes
betteratthatthanlam at comedy.‘
Coaxing enthusiasm out
ol Gerry is like asking him to
clean up his act. ltdoesn't
lastlong.‘Mymagicis specilicallyaimedata , smallgroup otpeople.l‘d
love to do some at that on
the stage but anyone past
the lirst row wouldn‘tbe able to see it.‘ So what isto
stop him doing a little
smooth-talking. sultry moving about between the tables? ‘My problem isthe original close-up magic relies on getting dressed up
3 in a tuxedo and being very. j very nice. I‘ve got to be
wouldn't like me to get close tothem. . .'
the lilm out lrorn otherslhat
have ostensibly covered the same subject matter.‘ Thetension between a reactionary and a more progressive attitude towards sexuality is at course a theme otalarming contemporary currency. as audiences at Czechoslovakia's Kavlovy Vary lestival were not slow
4 A scene trom Steven
, Moltat‘s new series. Press
5 Gang ‘ Press Gang begins on 16
! January. See Media b Listings.
Gerry Sadowitz doesn't smell but he is beginning to sound as ilhethinks he
does. He certainly stinks as
universities are concerned. 2 ‘That'sthelatest
g developmentityouwantto know. ldidagig atGlasgow
university in lront ol about
a 800 people and six didn‘t
like it. Unlortunatelythose six were on a committee
andthey madetheir leelingslelt. lwas goingto do one at Manchester and it
was cancelled atthe last minute because they said I‘d been banned trom all universities in Britain.’ Distressingly. the objectors
weren't even Thatcherites. 'Those six people had exactly the same political views as mine. It itwas six lascists I could understand that. but they'd missed the irony olthe wholething.‘ His reaction is not toturn into Ben Elton. but to ‘gothe otherway‘. ‘I get disillusioned. lcan‘twin whatever I say.‘
London's Time Out evidently agrees with him. axing his column alter several ‘disgusted ol Tunbridge Wells‘ letters. ‘I wasjust getting into my stride. One idea I had wasa cartoon strip but they didn‘t ‘ wantto dothat. Butlwon't slag them all because I
respectthem lorgiving me i the chanceinthelirst 3 place.‘
Those who have seen his ‘ actmightlinditunusuallor Sadowitz not to be slagging anyone oil. but his oft-stage personality is anything but arrogant. Last yearhetold The List that he would probably be an ottice clerk by now. He is not. buthe leels he is ‘just hanging on bythe skin at myteeth' in careerterms. To discourage any tans. he says his shows in Glasgow will be ‘exactly the same‘ as his shows last year and a hopeless waste olmoney. ‘Tell the readers not to come and see me. They could buy two packets ollags lorthat. and they‘d last longerthan the show.’
It is about now thatGerry tells me he has nothing to say. except perhaps to deline his comedian‘s 3 philosophy— a matterwhich took up some 900 words in
The Independent recently.
‘All I was dying to say was
that anything in comedy is
all right and it you don't like it tuck ott.‘ And it the PanAm jokes don‘t do the trick. he says he won't be on stage much himsell. ‘Tellthem it‘ll last about 10 minutes.
Gerry Sadowitztoursto Glsagow. Edinburgh and Cumbernauld. See Theatre Listings.
" ; " *7 HlL‘l.l.\l l.‘ 26in