Thursday, 20 September 2012

London: Let It Be The Musical

Pub lunch and a few bevies
Late start this morning because washing had to be done. By the time we got underway, travelled to Leicester Square and found the place where we had to redeem our three day London Pass and Travel tickets, we were fed up. One of those days I guess, when everything seems to go wrong.

It was half past twelve by the time we found the office, after walking up and down the Charing Cross Road for an hour. The office we were looking for was not only unmarked by number or sign but was also down a set of stairs inside another building. With the desk in sight, I was chipped by the security guard for standing on the wrong side of an organising barrier ... when we were the only people in the room!

Of course, it was at that point that I realised I had left the voucher we needed as a trade for our London Pass etc back in our flat. There was no negotiation ... we were stuffed for the day!

Really wanted to scream loudly. Didn't but felt I had earned the right through my own stupidity!

Sue, always the problem solver, did the only possible thing she could to repair the damage: found a pub and ordered lunch.

An hour later, things looked better, so after lunch we wandered towards Piccadilly Circus and plethora of entertainment there. At the Princess Wales Theatre, we found London's most recent West End musical, "Let It Be" ... the life and times of the Beatles. Whilst waiting for show time, we walked down to Covent Garden and the markets there. We found a couple of T-shirts we liked but markets the world over are just markets: cheap jewelry, T-shirts and shysters.

"Let It Be" was an interesting show. Without doubt the best tribute band I have seen, accurately recreated the Beatles music over four sets of approximately two years each, showing the transformation in dress and musical style over the 7 years they were in public life as a band. Before the show and at interval, trivia questions and answers were displayed on big screens which doubled as TV sets showing a "broadcast" of what we were seeing on stage. The music was sharp and the vocal and instrumentation was true to the original, although there were extra licks in "George's" guitar.

Look, they got the audience on their feet and listening to the music was fabulous, but it left me empty. For starters, there was no spoken narrative. Their story was told only through the music and the costume changes and key elements were completely ignored such as Brian Epstein, Yoko Ono, The Yogi, drugs, the rivalry between Paul and John. As a result, I felt I had paid too much to watch a tribute band - all be it a very good one - excellent lighting and staging but little else. This wasn't a musical and it was marginally theatre but as I said, the music was splendid.

We walked down to Piccadilly Circus after the show and checked out the famous Eros Statue at its centre and the meeting place for lovers since the 1960's. It was covered by yobbos this afternoon. Red buses and London cabs jammed the place and above the huge video screens lit the place with garish ads. Big crowd considering it was Thursday afternoon.

Tube home, again without incident and the threat of a visit to the local which evaporated as Sue's health deteriorated in the early evening.

Then there was the matter of the missing voucher, which I sought out immediately we got home, so I could place it in my backpack for tomorrow. More panic as I couldn't find it anywhere until I discovered in the safety of my money belt ... the same money belt which had been living under my left arm pit this morning as I stood cursing my memory at the London Pass counter.

Feck it!

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