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Belters and bohemians: Opera Locos @Sadlers_wells

At the start of the Opera Locos performance, the announcement says that they really are singing. You could be forgiven for wondering that, given the amplification turns up the backing track and the voices so loud that you can't always tell what's real. But this is a mostly harmless and slightly eccentric blend of opera classics fused with the occasional pop classic. However, recognising the pop tunes would help if you were over a certain age. The most recent of them dates back twenty years. It's currently playing at the Peacock Theatre .  Five performers play out a variety of archetype opera characters. There's the worn-out tenor (Jesús Álvarez), the macho baritone (Enrique Sánchez-Ramos), the eccentric counter-tenor (Michaël Kone), the dreamy soprano (María Rey-Joly) and the wild mezzo-soprano (Mayca Teba). Since my singing days, I haven't recognised these types of performers. However, once, I recall a conductor saying he wanted no mezzo-sopranos singing with the s

Movies: There Will Be Blood

there-will-be-blood, originally uploaded by Daniela Tropical.

Just before I saw There Will Be Blood last Thursday, I had a conversation with a friend about him doing the right thing and dumping some guy he had been dating by telling him after dinner. He didn't take it too well, and my friend was a bit upset that he had "done the right thing" and it still didn't work out too well. I figured whether you say it with dinner or say it with a brick through the window it is still the same news. I suggested it would have been better just to cut him off and ignore him. Well that suggestion didn't go down to well. But it was a relief after watching this film to see that there were far bigger ass holes out there... Such as the character played by Daniel Day Lewis. It is nice to see such a cynical, jaded set of characters on one screen. None of the characters are doing anything unless there is something in it for them.

While that may not seem like the best way to spend three hours, and it does have long slow stretches and loads of worthy acting, watching this film was enough to realise that this movie was light years ahead of the usual crap at the cinema. And how can you resist a film with lines like (to paraphrase), "Are you the afterbirth that slid out with the rest of your mother's filth?" Now that's one to try and slip into casual conversation...

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