July 2006: Hello everyone,
welcome to a, so far, glorious
extend a thousand apologies for
such a late missive. A lot of
which can be attributed to the
recent passing of my beloved dad.
I'm sure those of you who have
experienced the same situation
will understand perfectly the
tide of emotions one feels. Added
to that the huge practicalities
involved. The paperwork! Help! My
sister, Jeannie, has been an
absolute star in that department,
whilst I've been involved in
clearing wardrobes, etc;
organising relatives, and
generally helping to run a smooth
dad has had his official
"send off", things will
no doubt gel into their usual
like to thank everyone for being
so kind and supportive during
this time. It is so much
left me a marvellous legacy of
positiveness. His stock phrase
was "get on with
it...", so I'm doing just
think it's catch-up time now!
Where to start! I guess it's as
far back as panto in Rhyl. I had
a really luvly season there, made
all the more enjoyable because I
stayed in a marvellous place -
The Pier Hotel, run by two great
guys; Richard and Wayne. They
really looked after us, as most
of the cast were there.
the early morning performances,
breakfast was sometimes as late
as Midday. What luxury is that!
The whole aspect of the Pier was
a joy, especially the social
side! Let's just say there was
many a jovial early morning
had a lot of fun, and a cast who
all joined in with each other. A
highlight was a girl and guys
night, where the genders were
swapped. Can't tell you how gorge
some of the fellers looked. It's
amazing what a bit of imagination
and a few bits of lippy can do!
The guys all agreed, tho, that
high heels were not good for the
everyone involved in that luvly
had I arrived back home, the next
I embarked on another theatrical
foray into Shakespeare. It was
pretty weird to be a Panto Queen
on Saturday and a nurse on
Monday! But the variety of work
that is showbiz makes it such a
was given the script of Romeo
& Juliet several weeks
before. I had to read it on a
daily basis to familiarise myself
with the dialogue. I came to
realise that Shakespeare's
language is quite decipherable
once you get the gist of it. Like
any script really. It's just that
his is more thorough and
beautifully written - more
flowery than the Botanical
fabulous experience, tho. Once
I'd really got to grips with the
play I enjoyed every moment. It
was a joy to see the audience
enjoying themselves, especially
the younger students giggling
nervously at the double entendre!
quite a few sex Gods in the cast,
who certainly gave the girls
something amounting to
again, we had a great camaraderie
between us. Nearly every week it
was someone's birthday, and each
one was celebrated. In fact,
Jane, our Company Manager,
carried with her boxes of
compulsory party poppers and
play as long as Romeo &
Juliet you really need a
release, especially after a
matinee day. So it was great to
have parties and visit clubs,
etc. My ethos has always been
"work hard, play hard"
as you feel you've earned your
I tell you
what, tho', the concentration
required for 'Speare is
phenomenal, especially because
the dialogue is so well-known, so
if you get your thou's and thee's
in the wrong place, the rhythm
goes, along with the text.
that, I would definitely do the
"Bard" again. Thanx to
luvly Jenny King, the Producer,
for the chance to do it.
with loads of mates after and had
a great night watching Footloose.
Fab energy. Was out of my seat in
a flash. As was everyone else.
Luvly to be so well entertained.
went to the 'Annual Quiz' at the
Grovesnor House for the cancer
charity "Children with
Lukemia", always hosted by
the fabulous Jeremy Beadle.
Caught up with showbiz pals from Corrie,
Eastenders and The Bill.
A great night. I won an enormous
bottle of champagne for dancing.
A cross between Noddy Holder and
great time at Langham Hilton. A
very camp tea dance, organised by
my pal Gloria (Hunniford) to
raise funds for the Caron Keating
Foundation. Caron, as you may
know, died from breast cancer, so
it was a fitting fundraiser, as
well as fun. Cliff Richard sang a
song, acapella, dedicated to
Caron. Superb! Every note was
perfect. He even took off his
belt and signed it for an auction
item. Unfortunately, everything
else stayed on. He's such a good
Biggins made a great job of the
auction, and everyone entered
into the spirits - not the
alcohol type, as there was only
tea from the Orient.
treated to a stunning dance
cabaret, provided by the
professional participants of Strictly
Come Dancing. And we got to
dance with them. Make no mistake
- they were fit!! How fab to be
samba'd to death!
wearing a tiara that promptly
left my head after a particularly
energetic move, whereupon I trod
on it. Well, it's now become a
necklace, as I squashed it flat!
great to see people I've worked,
premiered, and partied with...
Robert Powell, Victor Spinetti,
Lionel Blair, Guitar legend Bert
Weedon, Paul and Debbie Daniels,
Zoe Lucker, and members of the
public who had bought tickets to
have a chat with everyone, and to
contribute to a great cause.
particularly good to have a luvly
chat with Michael Barrymore. He
looked great. He is undoubtedly a
fab talent, and whatever his past
troubles, it was good to see him
friend, Mario and I ventured to a
pub in Islington - well, more a
hi-tech bar, actually. There I
was in my long, sequinned frock,
squashed tiara, feather boa,
silver shoes and a sparkling
handbag. Unfortunately I got
mistaken for that night's drag
hungry for entertainment, I went
to Malaga - not that evening, a
week later. Two friends own an
apartment in a luvly place in
Calahonda. Fabulous. An old type,
Spanish dwelling, still with
original fittings and a superb
balcony view of the luvly
be doing A Place In The Sun!
was ten minutes away. Met loads
of ex-pats. All luvly. And just
one or two "Dodgy
Daves", with broad noses!
night was had at 'Bunny's', a
drag cabaret club. Just my type
of stuff. I luv a bot of camp!
Never! Of course, most of the
audience was British, so we all
had a good old knees up.
foraging around in the local
supermarkets. Everything seems so
much better than our stuff. It's
just pshychological, really.
Although I couldn't get enough of
Spanish tomatoes. I'm mad about
tomatoes in general. I'm coming
back as one so I can spend my
whole life in a greenhouse.
before I went to Malaga, or
Malager as I call it, I appeared
on Loose Women. I just luv
that show. They look after you
extremely well, sending cars,
which often these days is a
bonus. Pity, really. Most
programmes have a
"limited" budget these
days, which usually means
"not much money in it, but
you'll get lunch!".
is very tightly run. Staff know
exactly what they're doing and
most importantly, it's fun and
informative. I just hate working
on, what I consider, sub-standard
stuff. Anyway, that was all good.
extremely good production of a
new muscial entitled Enchanted.
Written, acted and produced
entirely by ex-students of
Guildford School of Acting. I
must salute their endeavours. I
was royally entertained. The
performances were excellent,
script very good, if too long,
but first-timers very often are,
I wish them all well.
great, but hectic, time appearing
on the Prince's Trust 30th
Anniversary. So many mates
were there, plus people I've seen
but don't really know. So, it was
a nice adventure. A difficult
thing to organise. Live stuff
really does have to stick to the
itinerary. Especially on ITV,
with the advertising input.
seen so many walky-talkies!
great catch-up with my mate Les
Dennis. Great to chat with Ronnie
Corbett. I had my heels on, so he
appeared to look like an
inhabitant of Lilliput! He's
enjoying a real rennaisance at
the moment. It's great. What
marvellous work he did with
Ross and I had some banter about
who was wearing the loudest
outfit. I think it was a draw.
downside to functions like the
Trust is that one is always asked
to repair to the bar for
conviviality". Nothing wrong
with that, but actors luvingly
refer to this as "hostility
in the crush bar", so
called, as the clamour for drinks
is 20-deep and the canapes
usually consist of pastry-based
ingredients. So every time you
have a chat. you choke on the
puff! Not conducive to witty
Duncan, ex-Blue band was there.
Ant and Dec hosting. So many
people you would all know.
few days later, a very nice
acknowledgment from HRS Charles,
thanking us for our
participation. You know, I've
always liked him, especially when
Hi-De-Hi! was at its peak
and he came to the Blue Peter
studio to do something with
plastic, and as he passed our
dressing rooms he gracefully
Obviously, totally wrong, but he
said it with spirit!
Am doing a
programme called Destination
Lunch with Judith Chalmers
and Peter Purves. Luv them. Due
to be broadcast on Sky TV. It's a
new lunchtime chat show, hence
the title, and will go out live
on Sky, Monday 7th August.
Will be in
Nottingham, week-commencing 28th
August, for another stint of Vagina
Monologues. Just luv that
time you read this, I will have
done the Press Launch for panto.
Mansfield Palace Theatre, being
wicked again. It's a luvly
theatre. I've played it before
and was lucky enough to see my
mate, Ray Meagher, there two
years ago doing his King Rat.
offered a really good play - one
performer and 18 characters! A
challenge, eh? We're looking to
do it after panto, so I'll keep
Regents Park Theatre to see my
luvly mate, Joshua Dallas, in The
Boyfriend. Hoping for a good
night, as the show, although
quite trite and cute, offers good
characters and tunes. What I call
"a bit of trivia" but
sending you home with a feel-good
glow. And nothing wrong with
decided my New Year Resolution
starts now, ie; my efforts to
keep you informed on a more
regular basis will be implemented
forthwith. Thanx John, who sent
an email to nudge me in that
to all of you who are loyal and
supportive, older and newer,
especially, too, to Davie who
manages and indeed, controls my
site and is very valued,
especially by professionals who
wish to engage in on-going
developments. Thanx Davie,
I so appreciate what you do.
thanx, too, to Rob Cope, who's
input is invaluable.
caught up now - look forward to
luv to you all - and don't burn!