The Independent London Newspaper

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The Xtra Diary - Simulations of Church Street Library

Detail from the publicity for Church Street library

Published: 3 June 2010

ABOVE: Detail from the publicity for Church Street library

EVERYONE knows that film and television are vulnerable to the lure of big brands.

OK, so nobody has ever asked Peggy for a pint of Stella in the Queen Vic, but James Bond is pretty much a human advertising hoarding and ask any girl about Sex and the City and Jimmy Choo is never far from their lips.

Diary would take a wager that one of the last places you would expect to see label promotion was in  the architect’s impressions of your new local authority library.

We were wrong.

A long film cliché double-take confirmed that there, smack bang in the middle of the Church Street library simulations, is a pencil-drawn shape reading a real Terry Pratchett novel.

We asked the city council about this and they said they had no idea how it came to be there.

It’s a real trial for theatre lovers as rain stops play

THE show must go on is a favourite bromide of the acting profession, but it seems there are some circumstances where all the stoicism in the world isn’t enough.

On Tuesday evening, with some apprehension given the inclement skies, Diary walked down to the Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park, ahead of a performance of Arthur Miller’s opus, The Crucible.

Despite the heavens opening, the audience – huddled under cagoules, home-made rain defences and waterproof trousers – waited patiently to see if the actors would brave the storm.

The dry ice came and went but no actors appeared. Almost half an hour passed, before a Tannoy announcement told us the show had been cancelled. Never has waiting to get your money back been such a “Will they? Won’t they?” game, but fair play to the theatre.

Other less scrupulous operations would no doubt push ahead with the wet and miserable performance to spare their coffers.

The bedroom, New York to Edgware Road

IF an Englishman’s home is his castle, then a teenager’s bedroom must be something like his maximum security safe house – Alcatraz with acne.
A new exhibition at the Subway Gallery explores the different ways teens experiment with decorating their walls – an age when Blu-Tack takes precedence over picture hooks.

Installations by the New York photographer Bob Gruen consist of rooms full of posters of rock gods The Clash and the Sex Pistols, as well as other memorabilia.

The show has come to these shores following a successful six months at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.
Teenage Bedroom runs at the Subway Gallery, Kiosk 1, Pedestrian Subway, Edgware Road/ Harrow Road, W2, until June 26.
www.subwaygallery.com

Election drama carries on

MOST of us had to pinch ourselves during the election.
Can this really be happening, we asked, as Nick Robinson marched around the virtual House of Commons explaining configurations and hung parliaments.

For those suffering withdrawal symptoms, now we are left with Clegg and Cameron looking nothing like the Cain and Abel brotherhood some were hoping for…
A new theatre production called No Expense Spared, looking back at the expenses scandal and the run-up to the general election, has opened at the Jermyn Street Theatre.

Described as a “posh Carry On”, the script has been tweaked to take in the post-electoral coalition landscape.
Just metres from Whitehall, be warned, too loud a laugh, and you could be met by a glare from a government minister in the next seat.
No Expense Spared is at the Jermyn Street Theatre until June 26.

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