Tuesday, April 15, 2008

World without borders

So I was listening to Martha Wainwright on the Conversation Hour on 774 ABC radio yesterday and she started talking about an online TV show that Peter Townsend (The Who) has called In the Attic (www.intheattic.btpodshow.com). Apparently it’s just two cameras set up in his lounge room so his girlfriend can have her own show. Love it! I like people who use their obscene amounts of money to do things a little more out of the box. I think if I had Townsend type moula I’d do a Wayne’s World kind of scenario with a TV chat show going on in the basement. ‘Course I’d have to get the basement first.

I think you can get podcasts from Pete and Rachel, his partner. I’ll have to check it out. Always looking for something new to listen to while I’m walking. I know a lot of people like high energy music so it keeps them speeding along but I just love listening to ideas and stories as I trundle. Recently I listened to author Ian Rankin (he of Inspector Rebus fame) lead a journo on a descriptive walking tour through the streets of his Edinburgh. I mean, it was amazing. Here I was doing five laps around the local footy oval whilst, flowing between my ears, were wonderful descriptions of the Scottish Museum and the CafĂ© Royal. Rankin is in love with his city and, in fact, on his website you can dip into a map of Rebus’ Edinburgh and find out more about the places written about in the novels. See, to me that sounds like fun. To others … probably sounds sad.
Two other people on the Conversation Hour were Michael Hohnen and Geoffrey Gurrumul. Hohnen was with the Killjoys. Now he’s really into indigenous music and, seriously, the number he did with this guy, Gurrumul, has to be heard to be believed. Gurrumul’s got the voice of an angel and it is incredible to hear Aboriginal language coming out of the radio. It’s not exactly something we hear a lot of. Hope these guys really have some success. Gurrumul is so shy he does not even talk. Hohnen has to speak on his behalf. But when he sings – joisos – am going off to order his CD now!

I am delighted to say I received an email from Howard Sherman from the American Theatre Wing. Tres delightful! He let me know that, beyond the podcasts, they’re also doing video podcasts of the TV show, ‘Working in the Theatre’. He says it’s “more a thematic panel approach than the one-on-one (or two-on-one) format of Downstage Center” which is the program I listen to. I’ll be checking it out with interest. Howard also gave me some theatre leads for Austin when I am there in October; will have to pass on to Mrs P while she’s living there. What a great world we live in!

Talking about this world … how about the Oprah/Eckhart tolle ‘web event’ that’s been going on? Luck would have it that I have been listening to Tolle’s book, A New Earth, in the car. Don’t switch off if you think this is too new age. It’s too early for me to pass judgment but his voice alone, which is kind of whacky, is enough to calm me down in the traffic. I’m just at the point where he’s on about body awareness and the effect that being aware of the life-force flowing through your limbs can have on your consciousness. Anyone who’s studied yoga would be completely au fai with this. Regardless, the amazing thing, media wise, is the fact that Oprah and he are hosting classes based on the book. I saw her on telly on a March episode (b/c we’re way behind) saying 90,000 people had already signed up at that point to be part of the classes. If you dare you can look at - www.oprah.com/obc_classic/webcast/archive/archive_watchnow.jsp - not that Ms Winfrey needs my help in the publicity stakes. I am the kind of freak that will take a peek at one of these ‘airings’ just to see what the hell it’s all about. Anything that can attract this much attention demands my attention. I use the same argument when telling people they should keep across really bad tabloid television, radio and news – even if it is like having teeth pulled out by a blind grizzly bear with pliers. To me it’s simple madness to remain ignorant about what the masses are consuming information wise. The masses are running your world.

Anyway – ranting now. Very unattractive.

Dinner tonight is at Seamstress - www.seamstress.com.au - a newish apparently hip Cantonese place in Lonsdale Street. I happen to know it’s getting written up in Time Magazine, along with my old fave, Cicciolina but that’s not why I’m going. I work for a bloody craft magazine. The restaurant’s called Seamstress. Get it?

Look forward to trying it out.

Photos: Rebus inspired Edinburgh and Howard Sherman (on the right I believe)

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