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After saving the planet on the radio this past week ‘Torchwood’ returns to our screens and moves to BBC 1. This time around there’s just one five-part adventure and ’Children of the Earth’ will be shown over five successive nights. An ordinary day becomes a world of terror, as every single child in the world stops. The bad news for the planet is that they’re not downing tools to watch ’High School Musical 43—It’s Worked Before So Let’s Do It Again.’ It’s far more serious I’m afraid as a message is sent to all the Governments of Earth declaring ’We Are Coming.’ Could there be an inter-galactic police force checking yet more politicians expenses perhaps?

Five Days to Save the Earth (Again) Russell T. Davies Talks about the Biggest Week in Torchwood History

As a trap closes around Captain Jack, sins of the past are returning, as long-forgotten events from 1965 threaten to r e v e a l a n a wf u l t r u t h . Torchwood are forced underground, as the government takes swift and brutal action. With members of the team being hunted down, Britain risks becoming a rogue state, with the mysterious and powerful 456 drawing ever closer. Captain Jack (John Barrowman), Gwen (Eve Myles) and Ianto (Gareth David-Lloyd) are helpless, as events escalate until humankind faces the end of civilisation itself. As ever Russell T. Davies is at the helm of ‘Torchwood’ and has written this five-part story. Here he talks about what we can expect from this new series.

world, I hope, the way we sit in the West and watch footage of atrocities in different countries and imagine it's all so far away, and so impossible here - which is a nice, comfy lie we tell ourselves.

one room, to thrash out the storyline and create the characters, and that's my favourite way of working. We also had the producer and director inside the Writer's Room, right from the very start, which is a very unusual way of working in this country, but with huge results - it meant we were all focused, we all knew the tone and the ambition of the piece and we all aimed in the same direction."

That was the heart of it. I wanted to tell a story in which civilisation snaps, in which we turn on ourselves, in which nothing is safe. Plenty of people live like that on this planet. In this story, it's Britain's turn!" The children of Earth are key to this

Torchwood are forced underground, as the government takes swift and brutal action.

How did you come up with Torchwood - Children Of Earth feels storyline. Do you think using children the concept for this new very epic. Did you enjoy writing the is scarier than the actual alien? one storyline over five episodes? series? "They just touch a nerve. A threat to our "It was a story I'd had in mind "I loved it, because it was a huge children gets a primal reaction out of all for ages - I'm just glad the BBC challenge. Lots of thrillers are written by of us. But beyond that, I think we can be gave me a canvas big enough just one writer, but we had three, across scared of our kids, too. That they can to tell the tale! But underneath five episodes - which meant a lot of seem unknowable, unreachable - that's the sci-fi and the aliens there's emailing and late-night phone calls! But why a gang of young hoodies can seem something very relevant to the we really worked as a team, all locked in more unnerving than an adult gang of


thugs." Do people need to know the back story to Torchwood to be able to enjoy this new series? "No, not at all - there are fleeting references to the past but, from the moment it starts, we're telling a brandnew story. It's been deliberately written so that no-one will be lost - and, at the same time, the faithful viewer will discover so much more about the members of the Torchwood team! There are plenty of rewards for the long-term fan!"

something bigger, a threat with real intelligence, a race with different protocols and standards. Some of my favourite material comes from episode three, where we have to see the government engage in genuine diplomatic relations with an alien species. You watch those scenes thinking: 'That's what it would really be like!'"

The relationship between Captain Jack and Ianto has developed. Was that something you'd be planning for a while? "Not planning, as such, it just grew naturally out of the scripts and performances from John and Gareth. And it's such a rich area the sheer will-they-or-won't-they tension of two men getting closer.

There are some fantastic guest stars in this series. What do you But, again, you can come to think they add to the series? Torchwood as a new viewer and follow their relationship from the "Just pure class! It's a joy, an absolute start - you won't get lost! And it's joy, to work with actors of this calibre. honestly a pleasure to write for two The 456 is Torchwood's most fierce Writing's easy, compared to the task of such fine actors - they make the threat to date. How do you think the standing there, saying this stuff, in a whole process a delight."

team deal with the situation? "This whole story tears Torchwood down and then watches them rebuild, but always questioning them, asking what sort of heroes they are, how far will they go? And what's the difference between a freedom fighter and a terrorist? At the same time, we get to know Jack, Gwen and Ianto more intimately than we ever have before - exploring their families, their history, their hopes and loves and their failings, too. As the alien threat gets bigger, so Torchwood's humanity is exposed, and threatened, and celebrated, too. And their lives are on the line - none of them are safe!"

whacking great close-up! "But we've got great new talent like Cush Jumbo, as Lois - the innocent secretary who discovers state secrets on her computer - and wonderful stars such as Peter Capaldi, who makes his character of John Frobisher so detailed and so nuanced, and so heartbreaking in the end. Add to that Susan Brown, as Bridget Spears keep an eye on her, she's a slow burner - and Nicholas Farrell as the most clever and manipulative Prime Minister you could imagine.

And then there's Liz May Brice as a truly ruthless assassin! We've also got Paul Copley as Clem, a character holding so many secrets from the past - Paul's simply astonishing to work with. And then the greatest enigma of Tell us more about the 456. the whole series is Lucy Cohu, playing Alice, who's no less than Captain "The size of this story, and the scale of Jack's daughter... What a mix! It's the it - spread across more than 40 years best cast I could have imagined!" of history - means that we needed

You recreate scen es of devastation in the middle of Cardiff Bay. Did you watch the filming of that? "Oh, I stay away from filming, it terrifies me - far too much like hard work! But I did pop down to the Bay to see some of the devastation - and, as ever, a lot of it is plain old camera trickery! By choosing the right angles, and by adding beautiful FX shots, we were able to make the damage look a lot worse than it is. You can go down to Cardiff Bay today, and it isn't even scratched!" The series can be seen from Monday July 6th at 9pm on BBC1. More on the next page as John Barrowman tells us about this latest series of ‘Torchwood.’


Time to Meet the Family as yet more secrets about Captain Jack are revealed John Barrowman talks about the new series of Torchwood

Ianto's relationship and Gwen and Rhys's – but you're also going to see the similarities. "The characters have evolved in ways because we're learning new things about them. It makes it really interesting for us to play as actors, and for the audience every episode will bring a new revelation." The new show format is also something John thinks will prove entertaining to the audience. "I think the one storyline works perfectly for this series – it's epic, it is pacy." The series will also reveal that one of the Torchwood team is hiding a dark secret – a potential catalyst for even more action-packed drama. "One of the team is hiding a secret that will be a revelation to a lot of people – not only to the viewers watching but to the team itself. It will be very uncomfortable for the characters. And people watching it will question why they did it. Will they be able to understand why they did it? "But, as in all things with science fiction, as a series, we can touch on subjects that are not touched upon in a number of other dramas."

As the future of the human race hangs in the balance, Torchwood faces death and destruction and battles to protect the human race. After the potentially apocalyptic encounter, will Torchwood and the human race ever be the same again? "Anybody who loves science fiction or a good drama will fall in love with Torchwood," says John. "It's actionpacked, it's sexy, it's exciting, it's an emotional roller-coaster and you just want to sit back and get ready for the ride of your life."

character Captain Jack Harkness, says: "It's changed in the respect that in series one we were crawling, series two we were walking and now series three we're running. "We know what Torchwood is and we know what it's about – it's full of drama and action. "This storyline is one of the darker Torchwood storylines. Every time you turn a corner you don't know what's going to happen. And when you watch episode one you're going to want to see two, and when you've seen two you'll want to see three. You're just going to want more and more and more.

Torchwood are a team of people who are fighting for the best interest of humanity; they are no strangers to the daily threat alien forces pose to the safety of the Earth. But, this time, they must fight with every ounce of instinct "You'll learn a lot about the and energy they have to survive. characters in ways that you've never known them before. If you Of the new format to this year's series, like relationships then you're going John Barrowman, who plays lead to see the difference in Jack and

The new threat faced by the team takes on a sinister theme using the children of Earth as a conduit. "Anything that involves children doing stuff they are not supposed to be doing is creepy," says John. "I let my parents watch episode one and two with me, and watched their reaction. Normally they would get up during a show and have a drink or go to the bathroom, but they didn't move. My mum and dad – who are my biggest critics – were glued to the screen. "We finished watching it and the following morning my dad turned to me and said: 'When are we watching three?' If they don't like something I do then they will say it. They absolutely loved this." More about the show from Eve Myles in our next update on Wednesday July 8th


Welcome to

CONTENTS 2-4 Torchwood 5 Letter From The Editor 6 Michael Jackson 7 Stonewall/Gay Life in Welcome to a brand new magazine for the LGBT community but one with a bit of a difference. I’ve edited a fair few LGBT Iraq magazines in the past and they’ve always been hard copy monthly (if we got the bills paid) publications. That’s an ok format 8 Breast Cancer/Gay of course but it has many drawbacks. Icons If I put a magazine out on July 1st and the next isn’t due until August 1st it’s just so frustrating. If I get a story I want to publish 9 Waiting in the Wings I’ve got a whole month to wait but that’s not the case with ‘Scene Life.’ This is a rolling magazine so there’s no issue two going t 10 Edinburgh Fringe be published. As the news comes in this publication will be updated and of course as news become out of date it’ll be deleted 11 Kylie Minogue and added to the archive we’ll build up. So if you’re a support group, social group, venue or business, just contact us with some 12 Pride in Brighton and news and it’ll be online as soon as possible not the following month. Hove The magazine is based in the south of England but wherever you 13 The Brighton Sauna are in the UK if you want your information published then just send it to us at the contact details given below. 14 Bourne Free So what’s in this first update? Well, the Pride season is in full 15 -16 Support Scene swing with the Pride London Festival Fortnight already well underway and culminating with the Parade and Trafalgar Square 17-18 West End Way event on July 4th. That’s followed a week later with the increasingly popular Bourne Free event in Bournemouth and the 19 Judy Garland/Drill Pride in Brighton and Hove event at the start of August. We have plenty of coverage of these events and if you’re going to any of Hall them, then please feel free to send us some photos at the contact address below. 20-21 Hinge and We’ve got plenty of news from support groups, interviews with Bracket Russell T Davies, John Barrowman America Ferrera and George Logan from ‘Hinge and Bracket’ and even our very own soap 21 Larry Grayson opera. I hope you enjoy this new format, the next update will be on Wednesday July 8th. 22-23 Ugly Betty 23 Welcome To The SCENE LIFE Club 24 Avenue Q/Missing Editor: Steve Ashfield Deputy Editor: Tizi Vashti Blue Since Monday Writer: Steve Ashfield 25 The Club Photos: Pride London, Bourne Free, The Brighton 26 Dallas Sauna, Channel 4, To Contact Scene Life Email: scenelife@live.co.uk


The King of Pop is Dead But will he be allowed to Rest in Peace? I’d be a liar if I was to tell you that I was his biggest fan but I can appreciate the music of Michael Jackson enough to know we’ve lost a tremendous talent. In terms of all-round performers, not just the ability to sing and dance to the highest level imaginable but to be a composer as well, there are few who can claim to be better than him. Ironically a week before his untimely death, I saw a video of his Greatest Hits in the local charity shop for just 20p. I didn’t buy it but as I followed the story of his death on Sky News I wish I had purchased that video. As the night went on and the unconfirmed reports gradually became shocking reality I began to wonder and to fear about what would happen next. Michael Jackson may be dead and in a better place but his name most certainly won’t fade away but what does the future have in store? Any article about Michael Jackson has to be split between his incredible talent and his extraordinary lifestyle. His musical legacy will last forever and as I watched an all-time Top 40 compilation on TMF (even putting up with David Gest as its presenter) I realised there wasn’t a song played that I didn’t like. It’s his lifestyle and the way in which he died that will dominate the headlines. You can’t libel the dead you know so the press will have a field day from now on. It was just after midnight on Kerrang Radio, who I doubt cover Michael Jackson a great deal on their station, that I heard the first ridiculous claims that Jackson might have faked his death. A couple of hours later one of his best friends, Uri Geller, described Jackson as “strange” and “weird” and then revealed that Jackson had all that plastic surgery so he didn’t look like his father. Geller began that revelation by saying “I shouldn’t really be telling you this.” No Uri, you shouldn’t but the floodgates are open now. With showings of grief and constant praise the order of the day, even someone who had previously made allegations against Jackson swept those feelings under the carpet. Terry George is on record as claiming that during one of the phone calls he had with Jackson while a teenager, the singer said he was fondling himself and asked him to do the same. Yet when interviewed on Sky News George mentioned the phone calls but forgot those allegations. He made sure that a plug for his memorial site www.gonetoosoon.org got included even though the interview had come to a close. George wrote a memorial for Jackson but again didn’t mention why his name had been linked to Jackson in the past. Of course in the days that followed his death, fans immediately began to download and buy his music. Strange really because if you’re such a fan of his music wouldn’t you already have it in your collection? The biggest threat to the legacy of Michael Jackson is of course the many allegations of child molestation that of course culminated in his being found Not Guilty in court. The payment to Jordi Chandler to prevent previous court action has never been fully explained. I expected that to be fully examined in the months and years to come. Amidst the thousands of heart-felt tributes to Michael Jackson on the web, the vitriol soon began. On Facebook I read one poster being delighted that the “nonce” was dead and that many families would be relieved he was dead. More comments were directed towards the Chandler payment and the reasons they felt it was made. Michael Jackson was the King of Pop but his musical legacy could yet be destroyed if revelations about his private life and behaviour towards children prove damaging enough. The King of Pop is dead but I doubt he’ll rest in peace.


Remembering the Day that would change all our lives 40 years ago the Stonewall riots took place and a special documentary was broadcast on BBC Radio 2 on June 30th (10.30pm) to remember this landmark event. If you missed this excellent documentary, just go to www.bbc.co.uk/radio2/documentaries to hear it. Back in June 1969 a police raid on the Stonewall Inn in New York resulted in a series of violent demonstrations which kick-started the international gay liberation movement. Presented by Tom Robinson, ’Stonewall: The Riots That Triggered The Gay Revolution visits the Stonewall Inn as it is now to re-imagine the riots, and examines the legacy of this historic week of disturbances. The one-hour documentary contains interviews with rioters, journalists and policeman who were there and explores what really happened and asks why, after decades of similar raids across the United States, it was Stonewall that exploded the most violently. It was a time when despite the fact homosexuality had been partially legalised in the UK two years previously, being gay in the States was still a nightmare. Homosexuality was still illegal in all but one state of this supposedly free country. Banks would refuse gay customers while entrapment and blackmail was rife. Sooner or later the community had to fight back.

Peter Tatchell talks about how the riots spurred him on to become an activist with the GLF in London. And, just three years after the riots, in 1972, US law changed to the effect that homosexuality was no longer considered a mental illness. Stonewall: The Riots That Triggered The Gay Revolution pays a visit to the newly-refurbished Stonewall Inn to ask whether revellers feel like they have reached full acceptance. While the events of 1969 helped move gay rights forward, many still struggle to discuss their sexuality openly. The programme asks if there are still lessons to be learnt from that fateful night four decades ago. As the debate on same sex marriage continues to divide US politics, how far will the battle continue? .

Gay Life Was Much Easier Under Saddam Hussein, Harrowing Radio 5 Live Documentary Finds The ability of gay people in Iraq to live relatively freely has been severely curtailed following the toppling of Saddam Hussein, a documentary on BBC Radio 5 Live has found.

In ‘Gay Life After Saddam’, Aasmah Mir finds out how life for the country's gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered community (LGBT) has got much worse since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003. Human rights campaigners claim hundreds of LGBT people have been killed or tortured while others have fled the country fearing for their safety since The programme finds out what impact the riots had on Saddam was toppled from power six years ago. Meanwhile, gay people around the world and asks, 40 years on, in the UK, gay Iraqis seeking asylum are struggling to what we still have to learn from the events of that fateful persuade authorities to let them stay. summer week in New York. Lewis Carnie, Head of Programmes, Radio 2 and 6 Music, said: "I'm proud that Through some harrowing testimonies, Aasmah hears from Stonewall is the first BBC in-depth documentary into the campaigners and those who've been persecuted to see how Stonewall Riots and delivers a remarkable look back at life has actually changed for gay Iraqis. Producer Ashley one of the most revolutionary moments in modern Byrne says: "The programme includes an interview with a history." gay Iraqi who was kidnapped and raped before fleeing the country, we hear from a young man who fled to Paris after Using archive material and new interviews with those being tortured and we get exclusive access to a so-called who were there, Stonewall: The Riots That Triggered 'safe house' harbouring vulnerable LGBT Iraqis on the The Gay Revolution provides a snapshot of the riots in outskirts of Baghdad." full swing. Many believe that the gay rights movement began the night after the Stonewall Riots yet, prior to the Ashley adds: "Some of the evidence is very difficult to riots, there was a growing resistance amongst the gay comprehend especially a form of torture involving glue and community. Previously unheard archive interviews with diarrhoea-inducing drugs." late activists Craig Rodwell and Barbara Gittings reveal the transformation of the gay power movement. Presenter Aasmah Mir also meets a London-based Iraqi whose life is under threat for the work he's doing to help gay In 1969, New York was in the middle of an election people in his homeland. Ali Hilli (a pseudonym) claims he campaign and the Mayor, John Lindsay, was calling for has had two fatwas issued against him from extremists in a clean-up of the city's bars. With ties to organised the Middle East. Co-Producer Gail Champion says: "What crime, the Stonewall Inn was an easy target. But things becomes clear throughout is that not one person, one group soon turned ugly, as customers spilled out from the or another is responsible for this persecution. It seems like Stonewall Inn onto the street, a crowd of thousands it's chaos in Iraq with the authorities struggling to keep gathered, forcing the police to retreat back into the bar, control. "What surprised me more than anything was how pursued by petrol bombs. What followed was three much life was easier for LGBT people under Saddam nights of pitched battles between the gay community Hussein." and riot police in the streets of Greenwich Village. The Gay Liberation Front formed just a month after the riots The programme can be heard on BBC Radio 5 Live on and soon became an international force. Sunday July 5th at 7pm.


The Ongoing Battle against Breast Cancer Breast Cancer claims the lives of more women in the UK than any other disease. 1 in 9 women will contract it at some point in their lives. 12,000 women die from it each year. On July 6th and 7th Sky1 and Sky1 HD are showing the documentary ’My Breasts Could Kill Me.’

It’s not just women who are affected by breast cancer of course and Dawn meets a 32 year old man who has had to come to terms with having a "woman's" disease and the stigma's attached to this including attaining the nickname 'Johnny One Boob'.

Presented by Dawn Porter, the documentary sees her embark on a journey that’s both personal and emotional. Over the two programmes Dawn exposes the nature of breast cancer and the treatments, stigmas and genetics connected to the illness. The latter is of great personal significance to her as both her mother and greatgrandmother died from breast cancer. During the programmes Dawn discovers that family history gives her a 40% chance of developing breast cancer but the tests reveal that could be higher, perhaps even as high as 80%. Such results may therefore give Dawn an unenviable decision: whether to remove her breasts in order to prevent cancer developing in the first place.

‘My Breasts Could Kill Me’ is an informative and hopefully life-saving, My Breasts Could Kill Me is an eye opening, heart-wrenching and uplifting investigation into an all-too-common killer. My Breasts Could Kill Me will air on Sky1 and Sky1 HD on Monday 6th and Tuesday 7th July at 10pm.

Over three months, Dawn meets women (and men) who suffer from breast cancer, as well as undergoing tests herself - a mammogram, an MRI scan, and a genetic test to ascertain if she has the precursors to the illness. The thought of finding out if she is genetically predisposed to breast cancer is a terrifying thought, and presents Dawn with the genuine prospect of having a pre-emptive, voluntary mastectomy. Dawn Porter; "Breast cancer doesn't only affect middle aged women. It affects young women like Kris, Liz and Becky and young fit men like Jon. I want to raise awareness of the disease and change people's perceptions. I've wanted to make this film ever since I started working in TV. I feel like it's the most personal journey I've been on, and despite the often distressing moments for myself and contributors during filming I have never felt such satisfaction with a project. It has been an inspiring and exciting series. I hope it will educate, inform and offer a different perspective on breast cancer." Throughout filming Dawn was referred to Europe's first purpose-built breast cancer prevention centre (The Nightingale and Genesis Prevention Centre in Manchester), where she was assessed by one of the country's leading experts on the genetic causes of breast cancer, Professor Gareth Evans. Along the way Dawn meets many inspiring people whose lives have been changed forever because of their relationship with breast cancer. These include a mother and daughter who both had elective mastectomy’s and were the first and youngest to have this type of surgery in the UK. Dawn also meets a 23 year old who was continually told she did not have cancer only to be told she had, and it had metastasised in her spine. She is now encouraging young women to "Coppafeel" at festivals across the UK and check themselves.

Gay Icons Exhibition opens at the National Portrait Gallery in London From July 2nd to October 18th you can see ‘Gay Icons’ at the National Portrait Gallery. There are works selected by Lord Waheed Ali, Sir Elton John, Sir Ian McKellen, Sandi Toksvig, Chris Smith, Billie Jean King, Sarah Waters and Alan Hollinghurst. ‘Gay Icons’ explores gay social and cultural history through the unique personal insights of these high– profile gay figures, who have selected their historical and modern i c o n s . Portraits inc lu de Francis Bacon, Joe Dallesandro (right), D a v i d Hockney, Harvey Milk, Quentin Crisp, Joe O r t o n , D a p h n e DuMaurier, W a l t Whitman, k.d. lang, Will Young, The Village People, Ellen DeGeneres, Kenneth Williams and Lily Savage. There are sixty photographic portraits including works by Andy Warhol, Linda McCartney, Fergus Greer and Cecil Beaton. Entry is £5/£4.50/£4 and free for Gallery Supporters.


Waiting In The Wings Theatre News I was listening to the new Alan Carr show on Radio 2 a couple of weeks ago and they were discussing guests who never seem to leave. Unsurprisingly Alan Bennett didn’t call the show but he perhaps had every right to. One day he discovered that Miss Mary Shepherd had taken refuge with her van in his garden. Miss Shepherd was allowed to stay there for three months but somehow the cantankerous, obnoxious, manipulative wonderful women ended up living there for 15 years. ‘The Lady in the Van’ written by the great Alan Bennett brings this story to the stage and is being performed by Southampton University Players at the Nuffield Theatre in Southampton from July 7th-11th. Tickets are £12 (£10 concessions) and the play starts at 7.30pm each evening. You can book tickets on 02380 671 771 and at www.nuffieldtheatre.co.uk To Bournemouth now and the legendary Neil Sedaka can be seen on July 6th with ‘Abba Mania’ on the 10th Other musical highlights in July are 'Masters of the Musical' on July 5th, the return of the legendary singer-songwriter Neil Sedaka on July 6th at the Windsor Hall plus Abba Mania on the 10th at the Pavilion. Spotlight - Now That's What I Call Showtunes is on from July 16th to 18th and the musical 'Chicago' can be seen at the Pavilion from July 11th to August 28th. Jimmy Carr can be seen in his latest show 'Joke Technician' on July 10th and 11th and more tickets have just been released Everyone loves dinosaurs don't they, though if they ever met one they'd probably run a mile, or more likely a few yards before being eaten. That's not going to happen though at 'Dinosaur Encounter' that an be seen from July 11th to August 28th. Tickets are on sale now from the Ticketline on 0844 576 3000, online at www.bic.co.uk or in person from the Pavilion Theatre or BIC Box Office. Minicom 01202 454804. For more information go to www.bic.co.uk The musical ‘Oklahoma!’ can be seen at the Chichester Festival Theatre until August 29th. Joyous and bursting with vitality, the landmark American musical tells the captivating story of Oklahoma farm girl Laurey, forced to choose between Curly, the happy-go-lucky cowboy she loves and Jud, the mysterious loner she fears. The score includes the classic songs The Surrey With The Fringe On Top, People Will Say We’re In Love, Oh What A Beautiful Mornin’ and Oklahoma ! The cast includes Leila Benn Harris as Laurey, Natalie Casey plays Ado Annie and Louise Plowright is Aunt Eller. More information at www.cft.org.uk, ticket prices range from £10 to £36 and are available at the website and on 01243 781312.


Nuns Coward Dr Johnson And A Madonna Impersonator

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2009 is almost with us and if you do fancy travelling up to Scotland for the event then there’s plenty of shows that will be of great interest to our community. I have to admit I have a soft spot for David Benson’s work and even included an interview with him in one of my wrestling magazines after a surprising meeting with him at a show in London. Anyway, he’s going to be a busy guy in August as he has not one but two shows in Edinburgh this year.

From August 621 (not the 12th) it’s ‘David Benson Sings Noël Coward’ at the Assembly Rooms. David is no stranger to performing as Coward having played him in the series ‘Goodnight Sweetheart’ that you can catch on ITV3.

It could only be The Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Having toured with the show this year he now heads for Edinburgh and the production features such well-known songs as ‘Mad Dogs and Englishmen’, ‘Mrs Worthington; and my favourite ‘London Pride.’ The show runs from 3.20pm to 4.30pm, more information about this show and others mentioned on this page at www.festivalhighlights.com Benson also performs his brand new show ‘Doctor Whom? My Search For Samuel Johnson’ from August 22-31 (not the 26th). He takes a look at the life and work of Doctor Samuel Johnson, many of you will know about his dictionary and other work, while most will just remember Robbie Coltrane playing him in ‘Blackadder III.’ The show has just been previewed at Johnson’s House in Gough Square, London, the British Library and Johnson’s alma mater, Pembroke College in Oxford. David Benson decided to write the show after seeing Stewart Lee’s 2007 fringe play ‘Johnson and Boswell: Late But Live’ and now premieres his ‘rough guide’ to Samuel Johnson. We all love musicals don’t we but could you improvise 24 new musicals? ‘Showstopper!’ The Improvised Musical is at the Musical Theatre at George Square from August 7-30 (not the 18th and 24th). The show made its debut last year and a brand new musical is created at every performance. It’s kind of like that 60 Minute Makeover show except here a writer has an hour to create a hit show to impress his producer so has to resort to getting ideas from the audience. An hour later you’ve got a new musical, mind you over the years there’s been a few shows I’ve seen that probably were written in an hour, ‘Notre Dame de Paris’ springs to mind. Perhaps I shouldn’t write comments like that before rather scarily the show invites comedy and theatre critics to join them on stage. There are special guest matinees on August 17th and 24th and in the past guests have included Matt Lucas, Mark Ravenhill and Mike McShane. ‘Nun The Wiser’ can be seen at the Gilded Balloon Tevoit from August 5th-31st (not the 12th or 19th) and has been written and performed by Triona Adams. It tells the story of a showbiz agent who decides to change her life and become a nun which is exactly what Triona did when she was 26. Triona found herself living a life with 13 strongminded women all at least twice her age and living a way of life designed over a century ago. The Bodega Brothers (aka Rob Castell and Tom Sadler) can be seen in ‘Afternoon Delight’ at the Pleasance Courtyard from August 5th-31st (not the 12th or 19th) and features song covering everything from cub-scouts to terrorists. There’s also a song that finally explains perhaps why the dinosaurs became extinct entitled ‘Dinosaurs were Gay.’ ‘Almost Like A Virgin’ is written and performed by Evelyne Brink and can be seen at the Pleasance Dome from August 5th to 31st (not the 12th or 19th). Evelyne is the UK’s premiere Madonna impersonator and reveals her extraordinary life mimicking Madge (Madonna herself is just back from Malawi where she’s been covering a Duffy song using lyrics such as “I’m begging you for Mercy.”). The show takes a glimpse at her experiences on the road and into the world of impersonation and tribute.


How Kylie Minogue made that Incredible Return It’s a sad fact that serious illness has no timetable whatsoever and can happen at the most inconvenient of times, not that there’s ever a time you want to be diagnosed with breast cancer. For Kylie Minogue her life was running perfectly with her ‘Showgirl’ tour going down a storm. Then in May 2005 Kylie was diagnosed with breast cancer and had to cancel the Australian leg of her tour, it had to be her own country didn’t it? 18 months later Kylie made her triumphant return and the DVD ‘White Diamond’ tells the story of her comeback. Only one man could persuade Kylie to make a film that takes a look behind the scenes. William Baker isn’t just her stylist and creative director but her best friend and “gay husband.” Kylie tells him how she’s canned such a film five times previously and might can this one if it doesn’t go well. ‘White Diamond’ follows Kylie from August 2006 to March 2007. We see her in London in rehearsals for her ‘Homecoming’ concert in Australia. Don’t expect though to see Kylie discussing her treatment in depth, some things really are too personal, this is more the story of her resuming a career that means everything to her. Kylie describes the documentary as "a good way to thank the fans for their support and to see where all their good wishes went". Baker's "access all areas" footage reveals Kylie in the dressing room both before and after her spectacular arena shows, meeting fans and working on designing a leopard print catsuit for the tour with Dolce & Gabbana. The highs and lows of Kylie's world are perfectly captured, from the pleasures of relaxing and having fun on a secluded beach during a break in her schedule, performing live on stage with her sister Dannii and with U2's Bono (during a rousing rendition of "Kids"), and celebrating New Year's Eve with thousands of fans at Wembley Arena, to the pain of having to abandon a concert mid-show and suffering a post-show collapse due to a respiratory tract infection. If you’re a Kylie fan then you just have to see this. It’s released by Fremantle Home Entertainment on July 27th and costs £12.99 We have five copies of ‘White Diamond’ to give away. Just answer this simple question and send the answer to scenelife@live.co.uk by midday on July 18th. Which male singer sings ‘Kids’ with Kylie on the DVD? Is it A) Robbie Williams B) Peter Andre or C) Bono

THE POP BLU-RAY OF THE YEAR! WATCH KYLIE IN FULL HI-DEFINITION GLORY! KylieX2008 sees Kylie back in the UK last August for her concerts at the O2 Arena in London Costing a breathtaking £10 million to stage, the KylieX2008 tour is the biggest and most expensive show that Kylie has produced to date, with performance tickets selling out to 120,000 eager fans within two hours of their release. Ever the byword for style, Kylie commissioned her head-to-toe couture worn throughout the performance from Jean Paul Gaultier. Now you have the chance to see the concert when it’s released by Fremantle Home Entertainment on Blu-Ray on July 27th costing £19.99 and shot in Hi-Definition. Fans new and old will thrill to a sensational 28-song playlist (including some surprising cover versions) that spans such heart-warming classics like ‘I Should be So Lucky', ‘Step Back in Time' and ‘Shocked' through to songs from her even more successful recent career like the golden-hotpants fun of ‘Spinning Around', ‘On a Night Like This', the Grammy award-winning ‘Come Into My World' and the aptly-titled ‘Can't Get You Out of My Head', which a lot of deliriously happy fans worldwide would agree with! Through intimate and revealing special features on the Blu-ray fans will also be able to get closer to the star. The exclusive documentary ‘12 Hours' takes the fan on a journey backstage on a Kylie tour from her waking in the morning to the final encore at the end of the show. Plus fans of the incredible look of the KylieX2008 tour can explore the striking visual elegance of the show through stage back-drop projections, costume designs and stage visualisations.


It’s Nearly time to Celebrate Pride By The Sea Pride in Brighton and Hove continues to be a spectacular success and the Park event, taking place on August 1st is still completely free. Time to take a look at what’s lined up this year and news of those all-important fundraisers that ensure this event stays free. The 2009 Pride Beside the Seaside Carnival Parade starts at Madeira Drive at 11m on August 1st. To register a walking tableaux, or float contact the Pride office on 01273 775939. The theme of this year’s event is Pride’s Around The World. The Summer Pride Festival takes place between July 25th and August 2nd with the Parade and free Park event taking place on the 1st. The 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots in New York was celebrated by Pride in Brighton and Hove and Brighton Ourstory on June 27th. The event will include speeches from those in the Gay Liberation Front, a video of the Stonewall events and an exhibition. It all starts at 6pm. Pride in Brighton and Hove trustee Kath Browne, who has helped organize the event said: "40 years ago drag queens and butch dykes were celebrating Judy Garland's life in New York's Stonewall bar when the New York Police decided to mount a raid. Enraged the patrons resisted the police and rioted in the street for days. Those riots marked a key moment in LGBT visibility and had international effects. The first Pride marches commemorating the Stonewall riots marked the start of the dykes on bikes and international commemorating marches across the globe - a tradition kept alive and well by Pride in Brighton and Hove." The 7th Annual Companion Dog Show takes place at Hove Rugby Club on Sunday July 5th. The event is being held in association with the Coastway Veterinary Group and helps raise much-needed funds for Pride in Brighton and Hove with more than 500 entries regularly being received. Judith Manson, Pride's Fundraising and Communications Manager said: "The Companion Dog Show is a fun event that opens the Pride in Brighton & Hove summer activities and has established itself as a firm favourite among dog lovers in the city and beyond. We are seeking donations of prizes for the winners on the day and sponsorship, naturally all donors and sponsors to this popular event in the Pride calendar will be acknowledged prominently." For more information about donations and sponsorship opportunities at the show please contact the Pride Office on 01273 775939. The event needs between 150 and 200 volunteers, mostly for the events on August 1st. If you’re interested in helping out, there’s an application form you can fill in at www.brightonpride.org, you can email office@brightonpride.org or call 01273 775 939. Pride has launched its own Charity Raffle with tickets costing just £1 and all proceeds going to Pride. Top prizes include a holiday for two to the French Alps donated by www.morzinemomentum.com, an afternoon of Pampering for two at Champneys in Brighton, a pair of Prada sunglasses donated by David Clulow opticians in Brighton and a case of Pink Barefoot Bubbly White Zindafel Wine donated by www.barefootwine.com The raffle was launched during Winter Pride and the draw takes place at noon on October 26th, more info on the Pride website. There’s a chance to perform on the cabaret stage at Pride (plus £100 and a trophy) by winning the Pride’s Got Talent competition. Heats are being held at the Queen’s Arms and entry forms are available by emailing andyqueensarms@yahoo.co.uk or by calling 01273 696 873. Heats are being held on Wednesdays with the final heat taking place on July 22nd with the Grand Final on July 29th with guest judges. The following night at the venue Betty Swollocks hosts a Pride Cabaret Evening with at least six performers appearing and starting at 9pm. On the 31st of July the Queen’s Arms holds Pride Camp Attack and Karaoke. On August 1st it’s the Pride Party on the Street in George Street from 7pm with an outside bar and music. That’s followed by another Street Party in George Street the following day from noon. Pride is due to end on the 2nd but on the 3rd there’s an End of Pride Party at the Queen’s Arms with cabaret from Miss Jason and Maisie Trollette at 9.30pm and a raffle in aid of Pride. More information in subsequent updates of ‘Scene Life’ and at www.brightonpride.org


Something for everyone including the community spirit at The Brighton Sauna The Brighton Sauna, formerly the Brighton Oasis and Refresh Club, will be open again from Monday 6th July 2009, under totally new ownership, totally Gay owned and run, and will be much bigger and better than ever before. The past three months have seen the venue go through a massive refurb and it’s now ready for its big re-opening. There’s some great facilities at the Brighton Sauna with something for everybody. These include a 20man sauna, a 15-man Steam Room, an 8-man Jacuzzi and a 15-seat Cinema. There’s not just 21 private cabins but five of them are of luxury standard with your very own adult TV and private locker. These cost an extra £1 an hour. There’s five Glory Hole Cabins, a Watersports Room, Sling Room and an 18-seat lounge to relax in with two TV’s. If it’s dark rooms you like then there are two at the Brighton Sauna plus a massage room with a qualified masseur available, five Adult Movie TV’s, free towels are supplied and there are nine showers, one of which is a cold one. There’s a special dining area and hot food, drinks and snacks are available all day and there’s free tea and coffee available plus a sweet machine. If you want to keep in touch with the outside world there’s three computers with free internet and don’t worry about the possibility your mobile might end up with a flat battery if you stay too long because there’s a mobile phone charging station at the venue. The new owners are fully aware that in the past the venue used to have a great “community spirit”, especially when owned by Brian and Arthur, and are keen to bring that atmosphere back. It’s their desire to “make this a venue that is firmly integrated into the Brighton community, not just a money making venture.” Since the announcement that the venue will be re-opening the owners have seen over 1300 people register in just six weeks. Standard Entry to the sauna is £12 and £9 for concessions (DSS/Students – Proof required). A ‘Brighton Early’ ticket is available for £9 if you enter the sauna by 1pm and it’s also that price if you just want to be there for the final hour, Sunday through Thursday. A weekend pass is just £18 and that covers you for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That sounds great if you’re planning to come to Brighton for the Pride weekend in August. The new owners have many years experience of running a successful sauna and have set themselves some very simple goals. No fancy names, no complicated entry fees, no attitude, no unfriendly staff, no mess or dirt and no excuses about things that don’t work (it’s a shame actually they’re not running the country). Their aim is to simply be THE Brighton Sauna, the biggest and best in town. They’re always prepared to listen to what their customers want and if there is anything they don’t like they’ll do their best to put it right. On July 5th they’re holding a Family and Friend day with female visitors welcome. No one has to strip down to a towel only, although no shoes and socks will be allowed. There’ll be free tea and coffee available and possibly a few glasses of bubbly. Then on July 6th when the sauna finally opens it’s strictly men only and nobody wearing clothes, i.e. no trades people, council officials or salespeople. For more information go to www.thebrightonsauna.com. There’ll be a review of the sauna in the update scheduled to take place on July 10th.


Soho Street Festival to go ahead

Bourne Free just keeps getting Larger and Larger The ever popular Bourne Free event takes place from July 10th to 12th and this year it's time to get the facepaint on as there's a circus theme. So plenty of clowning around is expected over the three days. There's a number of changes to the event this year as most of the action takes place in The Triangle. The change is down to the popularity of the event meaning it's just getting too large for the Lower Gardens. Lawrence Roots, executive committee member explained "Every year Bourne Free gets bigger and better and 2009 will be no exception". He adds, "the event has reached a stage where, due to rapidly growing popularity, we can make some very exciting changes".

Some good and bad news from London concerning this years Soho Pride event. The bad news (always best to get that out of the way first isn't it?) is that the organizers of Soho Pride have called off the event this year due to a lack of funding and the disruption caused by the Crossrail development.

The launch night is on Friday July 10th with a Jazz concert in The Triangle starting at 7pm. Last years concert proved to be a big hit so what better way to start the weekend? The Opening Ceremony will take place and there's a spectacular tribute Time for the good news and Qsoft performance planned plus a Consulting Ltd who own Gaydar and bar tent and a hog roast. GaydarRadio have announced that in conjunction with The Edge Bar they'll The big day arrives on July be running a Soho street festival on 11th and the Pride Parade begins at 1pm starting in September 13th. Meyrick Park and with the Trevor Martin, marketing director at circus theme organizers are Gaydar said; "There's an annual hoping that there'll be of clowns circuit of Pride events around the h u n d r e d s world that we support every year. competing in their fancy dress London is Gaydar's home, but we'd competition. The Parade travels all round town and Big Top entertainment all miss out if an annual Soho will include a Ringmaster, a team of stilt walkers and jugglers plus street community event didn't take place. dancers 'Dance Pumped' and Bournemouth Community band 'Samba W e ' r e c o m m i t t e d t o f u r t h e r Panashe.' By the time the Parade starts the Street Party in the Triangle will investment in what Gay Londoners' have already been going for two hours. You'll need plenty of stamina as the are expecting and waiting for. Every party runs from 11am to 11pm. The main stage will include singers, drag single person taking to the streets of acts and fitting in with this years theme there'll also be some circus acts. Soho Live '09 will be able to celebrate There's also a bar tent, plenty of food stalls and stalls. their own sense of pride" There's still going to be plenty of entertainment in the Lower Gardens though Andy Jones, owner of The Edge Bar as on Sunday July 12th there's a Family Funday starting at 1pm with music, said; "There's no place like home, games, children's face painting and entertainers. Entry to the Launch Night, and Soho has it all! Dining with Pride Parade and Family Funday is free but to attend the Street Party you celebrities, staying out 'til the early need a Bourne Free Wristband. These are going to be available until the hours, taking in art exhibitions, week before the event and cost £7 from www.bournefree.co.uk. After that walking the Compton Street catwalk they'll cost £10, all proceeds go to Bourne Free which is a registered charity. and picking up a few purchases on the way or simply relaxing in Soho Fundraising events include Bourne Free Karaoke Idol that’s been taking Square. Ruby slippers not required, place at The Branksome with the final held at their Garden Party event on it's all on our doorstep and we'll be June 27th. Body Positive Dorset will be taking part in the Pride Parade and bringing it together for one amazing are looking for anyone who can walk on stilts, juggle or perform any other circus related activity whilst walking on the parade. Help is also needed to day carry the Body Positive Banner. They've also booked a stall for the Street Party. For more information go to www.bournefree.co.uk


"Even though the medical treatment of HIV has greatly improved the life expectancy for people who are infected, HIV is still a very serious and incurable medical condition," said Matthew Hodson. "Everything that we can do to support men to stay HIV negative is valuable, both for the individuals Gay Men Fighting AIDS (GMFA) have produced a new concerned and for the wider gay community. By booklet to help gay men who have tested HIV negative to stay reading this book and trying out some of the exercises you're making a commitment to keep your HIV negative negative HIV status forever." You pluck up the courage to go for an HIV test. The result comes back and it is good news - you're HIV negative; you 'Tested Negative' was written by GMFA staff and haven't been infected with HIV. You might think that that's the volunteers, working with clinic staff in sexual health happy ending, but for many gay men it isn't. A number of services throughout London, including St Mary's, recent studies have shown that the majority of gay men who Bart's, Royal Free and Chelsea and Westminster. are diagnosed with HIV have had a previous negative test result and then became infected with HIV later.

Tested negative? Stay that way!

New Walk-in Service for Gay Men opens in Soho

"It's a sad story, but a familiar one," said Matthew Hodson of GMFA. "I think that lots of men when they test negative think that they will always have safer sex from then on, but then find that it's not always easy. Getting a negative test result can give you the opportunity to think about your behaviour, why A new world-class HIV and Sexual Health clinic has you felt you needed to test in the first place and what you can opened in Soho with a free walk-in service for gay do stay safer in future, but without support a negative test can men. actually increase the chances of sexual risk taking." The multi-award winning Victoria Clinic for HIV and To help gay men who test negative to stay negative, GMFA Sexual Health located at the South Westminster have just produced a new booklet called 'Tested Negative?' Centre for Health, and Sorted gay men’s service This booklet provides both information and exercises that help based at the Soho Centre for Health and Care, have men to take control of the sex that they have, and avoid the now moved to new, larger state-of-the-art premises sex that is more risky than they want. in Dean Street, Soho W1D 6AQ. The new clinic, called ‘56 Dean Street’, was opened last month by The booklet is now available to gay men in some gay bars Lord Darzi, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State and is being distributed by health trainers on the scene and at the Department of Health, and will offer a free through GUM testing services in London . It can also be walk-in one-hour HIV testing and hepatitis B downloaded free of charge from GMFA's website at vaccination service for gay men. www.gmfa.org.uk/staynegative. 56 Dean Street is the result of over 2-years of Partly due to improvements in treatment for HIV, the uptake of planning and research by Chelsea and Westminster HIV testing has increased dramatically in recent years. In Hospital NHS Foundation Trust that involved close 2003, just over 30,000 HIV tests were offered to gay men in consultation and collaboration with gay men and the the UK . By 2006, more than 41,000 HIV tests were being latest advances in patient care in HIV and sexual offered and the proportion of men getting tested had also health. “We’re delighted to open a clinic that will be increased. In London , 80% of tests offered are now being highly efficient to run, accessible to gay men and that accepted by gay men. delivers a world-class service to patients at a time when rates of sexually transmitted infections are Studies over the years found that men who tested negative increasing”, said Dr Alan McOwan, Service Director repeatedly were more likely to have unprotected sex[ In a for Sexual Health at Chelsea and Westminster recent study, researchers for the Health Protection Agency Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. “At any time during found that negative HIV tests could contribute to a belief that opening hours, gay men can walk-in, have a HIV test some risky behaviours were actually safe enough and so lead and get their results in one hour”, Dr McOwan to continued or increased risk behaviour. They also found that continued. a negative HIV test "imbued men with a sense of immunity from HIV" More than 66,000 patients used the Trust’s sexual health services in 2007/08 and the Trust provides The 'Tested Negative' booklet includes information on HIV treatment for almost 5,500 people living with HIV. tests, HIV risk and what to do if it all goes wrong, as well as They’ve moved to Dean Street due to a lack of exercises that can help men to make the changes they need space at the Victoria Clinic and rapidly increasing to keep themselves safe. The booklet is designed so that rates of sexually transmitted infection and HIV man readers can pick and choose the information and exercises it’s vitally important for sexual health services to be that they need. as accessible as possible.


The new centre will provide two evening clinics a week and will also be open on Saturdays, making it one of only two NHS sexual health centres in London to offer Saturday opening (the other being Chelsea and Westminster’s West London Centre for Sexual Health). Opening hours are 12-7pm on Monday and Thursday, 9am-4pm on Tuesday and Friday, 12-4pm on Wednesday and 11am-4pm on Saturday. The clinic is closed on Sundays.

The Great London Same-Sex Hand Holding Relay

A Day In Hand is looking to make the first ever same-sex hand holding relay team, as part of the 2012 London Games Open Weekend and For more information go to ww.56deanstreet.nhs.uk 2012 Cultural Olympiad.

THT reach semi-finals of the National Lottery Awards

That's due to take place at the perhaps appropriately named Queen's Park on July 25th. The plan is to train a relay of same-sex hand holders that will cross the capital, hands unbroken. The goal of the project is for one same-sex hold (created by different couples) to make it continuously from North West to South East London, The National Lottery has announced that HIV and and in the public eye. sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) has reached the semi-finals of the National Lottery The team will comprise of numerous same-sex pairs. At each Awards. The awards are an annual search to find stage of the relay a different pair will hold hands between two the UK's favourite Lottery-funded projects and selected locations. The distance might be anything from 10 me‘Young Leaders’ – THT’s sex and relationships tres to 1000 metres, depending on the pair. A Day In Hand will education (SRE) project for young people has been follow each pair along the route through the capital. At certain locations, same-sex pairs will pass on the hand holding chalshortlisted in the ‘Best Health Project’ category. lenge to another pair. To take part you can be single, and it Young leaders is a grant giving scheme which gives doesn't matter if you're gay or straight. The organizers are lookyoung people aged 13–19 the opportunity to set up ing for anybody who would be prepared to hold someone's their own SRE projects in seven regions across hand of the same-sex for anything between 1min and 1 hour. England. As well as increasing their knowledge of sexual health, Young Leaders aims to help young people develop the skills to make informed and healthy decisions around sex and relationships. Since it launched in 2007, Young Leaders has awarded over £88,000 to 110 different projects nationally, reaching well over 16,000 young people. Jenn (18) from London said "The project has not only educated us sex and relationship wise, but empowered us with the skills and knowledge to educate others as well. Its impact on us as young people in a more sexualised culture has been invaluable. It sounds like a cliché but it's genuinely changed my life. Please support such an amazing project by voting for us!" Voting continues until midday on July 10th and can be cast online or by calling 0844 686 1553. Once the voting closes, three projects with the most votes will go through to a final round of public voting, which takes place from 3-14 August. The winners and runners-up will be announced during a special gala BBC1 television show, later in the summer. The winner of cash prize, to information on youknowyou.

A Day In Hand founder, David Watkins says, "Even in London in 2009, same-sex hand holding is a rare event. With the eyes of the world on us in 2012, we want to make sure that London is regarded as a city where same Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, & Trans people can live their lives openly, without fear. We have 3 years to put same-sex couples visibly on the landscape of London 's street. That means holding hands, out in the open, where we can, to change mindsets and encourage equality of respect. One same-sex couple holding hands publicly can challenge attitudes and stereotypes and is worth a thousand pride parades." A Day in Hand heralds a revolutionary way of making the world a more livable place: a revolution in which anybody, on any day, can be a part of. The campaign was launched on May 17th and is now featured in over 20 countries around the world. Same-sex hand holding is a silent revolution because nothing needs to be said, no war of words, no impassioned speeches. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans people can challenge homophobia and transphobia by visibly becoming part of the public landscape in so many cities of the world. How? By holding hands we challenge stereotypes and show we love and commit like everyone else.

For more information go to http://www.adayinhand.com, each category will receive a £2,000 http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=44558452324 and be spent on their project. For more http://twitter.com/adayinhand Young Leaders visit: www.tht.org.uk/ For more information about the Open weekend visit http:// www.london2012.com/get-involved/open-weekend


WEST END WAY 755 0016. For more www.priscillathemusical.com

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From Destiny’s Child to Chicago Michelle Williams is the latest star name to join the West End cast of ‘Chicago’. The former Destiny’s Child star will take over the role of Roxie Hart at the Cambridge Theatre from July 13th. Williams has previously appeared in ‘Aida’ and ‘The Color Purple.’ Michele joins Jerry Springer who’s just started in the show playing the role of Billy Flynn. The role of Roxie Mullholland who ends The musical version of hit is currently being played by Aoife th her spell in the show on July 11 . movie 'Priscilla Queen of the Desert' is proving to be one of the most popular Due to its ongoing success, ‘Chicago’ has extended its shows in the West End. booking period by a further six months until 30 October Such is the success of the 2010 and has been running in the West End since show that 250,000 new November 1997 and is the longest running Broadway tickets have recently been musical in the West End ever. released and bookings are already being taken until Tickets for the show are priced from £25.00 - £59.00 and are available from the Cambridge Theatre Box February 2010. Office on 0844 412 4652. Performance times at the The hit show stars Jason Cambridge Theatre are Mondays to Thursdays at Donovan (who plays Tick), 8.00pm, with Friday performances at 5.00pm and Tony Sheldon (as Bernadette), Oliver Thornton and Clive 8.30pm and Saturday performances at 3.00pm and Carter. The principal cast are joined by Zoë Birkett, Kate 8.00pm. The show is booking until October 30th of next Gillespie and Emma Lindars as the three Divas, Wezley year, more information at www.chicagothemusical.co.uk Sebastian as Miss Understanding, Amy Field as Marion, Daniele Coombe as Shirley, Tristan Temple as Jimmy, Kanako Nakano as Cynthia, Steven Cleverley as Young Bernadette and John Brannoch as Frank. The popularity of ‘Mamma Mia’ seems to be neverending and a new cast has just started performing the Priscilla Queen Of the Desert The Musical is a hearthit musical at the Prince of Wales Theatre in London. warming, uplifting adventure of three friends who hop aboard a battered old bus (nicknamed Priscilla) searching Sally Ann Triplett now plays the part of Donna Sheridan, for love and friendship and end up finding more than they Niamh Perry (who was seen in ‘I’d Do Anything’) takes could ever have dreamed. With a dazzling array of over as Sophie Sheridan, Christopher Hollis plays Bill outrageous costumes and featuring a score of dance-floor Austin Norman Bowman is Sam Carmichael and Katy classics, this new musical is a sensational journey to the Secombe is Rosie. At certain performances Donna will heart of fabulous. be played by Melissa Jacques.

Priscilla becomes massive hit in the West End

New Cast for Mamma Mia

The show made its world premiere in Sydney in October 2006 and has subsequently wowed audiences and critics alike in Melbourne and New Zealand to become the most successful Australian musical of all time. Plans are afoot for a North American production to open in Toronto and on Broadway in Autumn 2010 and another in Germany in Spring 2011.

The show recently celebrated 10 years in the West End and has had the highest ever weekly gross taken in the history of the Prince of Wales Theatre several times. “Mamma Mia’ is now booking until 27 March 2010. Ticket prices range from £19.50 to £58 and are available at www.mamma-mia.com or through the Box Office on 0844 482 5115 or SEE on 0844 412 2962. Performances times are Mondays-Thursdays at 7.30pm, 'Priscilla Queen of the Desert: The Musical' can be seen at with Friday performances at 5.00pm and 8.30pm and the Palace Theatre. Performances are Monday to Saturday performances at 3.00pm and 7.30pm. More Saturday at 7.30pm with matinees at 2.30pm on information at: www.mamma-mia.com Thursdays and Saturdays. Tickets can be booked on 0844


There’s Nun better than Sister Act

Director Phil Willmott has shaped a new production specifically for London audiences. "This isn't a tacky strip show; it's a sexy and often sophisticated piece of musical theatre. I'm looking forward to unleashing its potential in the West End"

The stage version of the hit movie ‘Sister Act’ has recently Naked Boys Singing has become a world-wide opened at the London Palladium starring 24-year old US phenomenon with productions in new York, San actress Patina Miller. Francisco, Los Angeles, Ft. Lauderdale, Houston, Portland, Provincetown, Philadelphia, Boston, It took a year to cast the role of ‘Deloris Van Cartier’ made Vancouver, New Orleans, Washington D.C., Sao Paulo, famous by Whoopi Goldberg who’s Rome, Sydney, Oslo and Cape Town! Talking about the casting of Patina, Whoopi Goldberg said “ It wasn't easy, but we did it. And boy, can she sing (unlike some people we know – me!). And in order to match her, we went for the best and we got the brilliant… Sheila Hancock is our Mother Superior, a legend and not just in my mind. I think together they will reinvent ‘Sister Act; and bring it to a whole new level…can you tell I'm excited?”

The London cast includes Stephen Butler, Duncan Leighton, David Lucas, Adam Mendlesohn, Matthew Russell-Jones, Nathan Taylor and Joe Van Haeften.

Tickets are £17.50 (£15 concessions) and the show can be seen from Tuesday to Saturday at 9.30pm. You can also purchase combined tickets if you want to see 'F*cking Men' which is performed at 7.30pm costing £30 The new musical features a score by Alan Menkin, best (£25 concessions). They can be booked on 0845 017 known for Disney movies such as ‘The Little Mermaid’, 5584 or at www.seetickets.com ‘Beauty and The Beast’, ‘Aladdin’ and ‘Enchanted.’ Performance times for the show are 7.30pm Mondays to Saturdays, with 3.00pm matinees on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Tickets, priced from £17.50-£60.00 (£17.50£50.00 during previews), will be available from the London Palladium Box Office on 0844 412 2704 and online at www.sisteractthemusical.com. “Sister Act” is currently booking in London until 13 February 2010.

It’s seems everyone wants to see Naked Boys Singing!

F*cking Men in the West End at last! 'F*cking Men' is the longest running off-West End hit but it finally gets its transfer next month when it opens at the Arts Theatre on July 7th.

Currently being performed at the Kings Head in It's just been announced that the show will be moving to the Islington, Joe DiPietro's play is produced by Phil Wilmot Arts Theatre in the West End from July 7th. and is a portrait of ten men searching for love, sex and intimacy in modern day America. Inspired by This perfectly proportioned, 65 minute review features 7 Schnitzler's La Ronde this insightful drama looks at a good looking and talented male actors celebrating the succession of couples and strangers as they negotiate glories of the the before and after of lust, love and betrayal and the naked male pursuit of sex. body through a series of Some stories are poignant, some hilarious, but catchy, pithy collectively they provide a fascinating snap shot of the c a b a r e t modern-day male. A fearless dissection of numbers both homosexuality that will fascinate male and female funny and audiences of every persuasion. poignant. The long running New Y o r k production is equally popular with gay and straight audiences and its famous fans include Ricki Lake, Harvey Fierstein, Molly Ringwald, Deborah Gibson, Betty Buckley, Bernadette Peters.... and 55 members of the NYPD!

The show opens on July 7th and is currently booking until August 30th, Tickets cost £17 (£15 concessions) and combined tickets with 'Naked Boys Singing' (also produced by Phil Wilmott) cost £30 (£25 concessions). Tickets can be booked on 0845 017 5584 and at www.seetickets.com


It’s Time to Join The Judy Garland Club It's been announced by Gary Horrocks, former editor of the renowned 'Rainbow Review' that he'll now be running the famous Judy Garland Fan Club and that it'll take "on a new phase" under his tenure.

either identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) or have LGBT families. The 11-14 year old group is designed for children with LGBT families and during the week they'll work together as a group to make a short piece of theatre. At the end of the week they'll present that piece to family and friends. No audition is needed but you do need to be enthusiastic, willing to work hard and definitely up for some fun. Application forms are available by emailing dhyt@drillhall.co.uk or calling 020 7307 5060.

Gary has already lined up three volunteers to take on the management of the funds, copying typing for the new magazine and managing the membership database. Eleanor Lyon The 16-19 year-old group is open to everyone, regardless of race or sexuality, you just have to love performwill continue to work as US representative. ing During the two-week summer school, teenagers will have the chance to experience the behind-theA new magazine entiscenes atmosphere of a professional theatre. They will tled 'Judy Garland in perform theatre exercises, explore improvisation, text, Retrospect - The new movement and voice skills, and look at how different Rainbow Review' will types of people are represented in modern and be launched in July/ Shakespearian texts. At the end of the two weeks, August as part of the participants will have the chance to show off what they new Club portfolio. have learnt to their families and friends in The Drill It's hoped that two Hall theatre. glossy magazines of no more than 48/52 For the 16-19s' programme, The Drill Hall is holding pages will be pubgroup auditions at the beginning of July - please email lished yearly with an dhyt@drillhall.co.uk or call 020 7307 5060 for an appliinterim bulletin. The cation form. magazines will include articles from Julie Parker, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of the original Rainbow The Drill Hall, said: "We are proud to be one of CamReviews that began den's flagship venues. Through our education work, in 1963. Gary also plans to work with guest writers such as John Fricke, Susie we have produced an exceptional programme for schools and young people that addresses homophoBoyt and Steve Sanders. bia and its consequences. This has included Grace Two magazines have been completed by Gary and Lorna Barnes's adaptation of Jackie Kay's Trumpet, for Smith, the founder of the club, and once subscription reve- which Cathy Tyson won Best Actress in a Visiting Pronues have been received, they'll be able to move forward duction at the Manchester Evening News Awards. with publication. The magazines will feature photographs from Lorna's collection that the community has never seen. It's also planned to capture Lorna's memories on video and a special video capturing the history of the club for all members.

"We are particularly proud of FIT, written and directed by Rikki Beadle-Blair, which toured to schools and young people's organisations throughout London and the UK. We were overwhelmed by interest and will be touring this outstanding play again later this year.

The first issue will be a 40th anniversary special issue including parts of the 66 page memorial tribute published by Lorna "We are delighted that Barcy Cogdale is leading our soon after Judy's death. This will include her essay 'Judy - 11-14s' youth theatre. She does a fantastic job of directing The Drill Hall Darlings, our community-theatre With Love.' project. We know she will bring the same energy and Cheques for $35 can be sent to Eleanor New members will fun to this event, making it a week not to be missed! be offered a complementary back issue for as long as stocks "We are looking forward to working with Rikki again last. this summer and are sure that he will make our youthFor more information email ELYON56456@aol.com if you’re theatre programme an exciting, enjoyable and enerin the States and if in the UK and Europe email getic experience for everyone involved." gary.horrocks@gmail.com

The 11-14 year-old group runs from July 27-31 (10am to 4.30pm) and costs £50. The 16-19 year-old group takes place from July 27th to August 7th (10.30am to 5.30pm) and costs £80. Auditions are being held on Young people from London have the chance to experience July 5th and 12th. the thrill of treading the boards this summer. The Drill Hall is running two unique projects especially for young people who

Teen Drama At The Drill Hall


If you haven’t yet discovered the delights of Hinge and Bracket then you just have to get your hands on ‘Dear Ladies’. It’s the second series of their TV sitcom and is absolutely marvelous. The Dame and the Doctor are in sparkling form throughout as they make the transition from the radio and stage to the small screen as if they’ve been on television all their life. Whether it’s trying to sort out their finances, arranging for a visit from Italy or trying to win at bowls this DVD is non-stop laughter from start to finish. The DVD also includes an interview with George Logan (Dr. Evadne Hinge) as he recalls his time working with the late Patrick Fyffe (Dame Hilda Bracket) and filming the series.

Interview with George Logan How did your partnership with Patrick Fyffe begin?

Two Dear Ladies Who Never Failed to Entertain Scene Life interviews George Logan From Hinge and Bracket

We met in 1969 or '70 at a club in Pimlico, where I was the pianist and Patrick was the act booked to appear that week. We became friends and in 1972, Patrick suggested we form a double act, as he felt we worked well together and shared a similar sense of humour and taste in music. How were the characters of Hinge and Bracket created and how did they change over the years? Originally, the character who eventually became Dame Hilda was an ageing soprano, and my character was her male accompanist. Early in rehearsal, however, we had the idea that it might be funnier if both characters were ladies. The names we just made up - I remember in the early days a producer saying 'You'll have to change that name - no-one will ever remember a name like Hinge and Bracket'. Luckily, we chose to ignore his advice. You had a massive success at the Edinburgh Festival in 1974, what are your memories of that? I remember we had 3 or 4 people in the audience for our first performance! Luckily, after the newspaper reviews came out, this changed, and we were packed out for the remainder of our 3-week run. I also remember being thrilled to be earning £100 a week. Particularly as our digs were very cheap, since there were 5 of us sharing a room - the producer, the director, the lighting designer and Patrick and myself. What do you think it was about the characters that made them so appealing? I think they tapped into a very British sense of humour, following in the footsteps of the likes of Hermione Gingold, Joyce Grenfell, Margaret Rutherford and other wonderful ladies of the post-war years. They seemed to inhabit, too, a cosy Agatha Christie-like village ambience, and have a way of life that was fast disappearing in the 1970s. Not to forget, too, that their music added to their appeal - that slightly amateur-ish but enthusiastic performing style that evoked memories (for those of you who still have them, as Dame Hilda would have put it) of a very English, afternoon-tea-with-the-vicar period in our social history. After a successful radio show came 'Dear Ladies’ How did you feel about working on a TV sitcom? Very thrilled indeed. We had long wanted to put the ladies in their everyday lives on television. We had already done quite a lot of television, and made several programs for the BBC, but in a concert hall and recital setting. We felt it was time to explore their private lives in more detail, as we had already done on radio. Was it difficult adapting the characters to the TV series and how did Patrick and yourself find working in that kind of production? We didn't have to change the characters at all - it would have rather taken the point away if we had. But of course the mechanics of filming did mean that we had to adapt our performing style somewhat. Television is much more restrictive from the point of view of ad-libbing, and being tied down to camera angles was something that we had to get used to. Luckily we worked with a wonderful team at BBC Manchester, who were always happy to listen to our


ideas and suggestions, and adapt their style to suit us where possible. What was Brandreth?

it

like

working

with

Gyles

Gyles was great fun. We all worked on the scripts together, throwing in ideas and lines, working out possible plot lines and scenes which we thought would be funny. Then poor Gyles had to take all this stuff away and come up with six or eight scripts - I'm sure all who see the series will agree he did a remarkable job. Hinge and Bracket performed in many different areas of entertainment; tv, radio, concert performances, which did you prefer? I think there is no doubt that we both enjoyed performing in theatre to any other medium; perhaps because there we were in total control of what we did, and were completely free to ad-lib, change things on a whim, chat to the audience, go off at a tangent. Some of our best moments, I feel, grew out of this freedom to extemporise, which is not available to you in other areas of entertainment. What was it about Patick Fyffe that made the partnership work so well?

Shut That Door and watch Larry Grayson on ITV I have to admit that it’s been a long time since I laughed so much while watching this excellent three-DVD compilation of Larry Grayson at ITV. If it’s camp comedy that you’re looking for with more double entendres than you can shake a stick at, then this is totally recommended. When they coined the phrase ‘overnight success’ Larry Grayson was never going to be used as a prime example. Grayson was working in clubs up and down the country for decades before he received his big chance. During that time he began working under the name of Billy Breen, performing one half of his shows in drag and the other as himself. Often people who weren’t in the know didn’t cotton onto the fact that both acts were one and the same person. Perhaps it was the attitude of society to homosexuals that prevented him becoming a massive star. Just a few years after homosexuality was partially legalised, Larry was given his chance when he appeared on a Saturday night ITV show entitled ‘Saturday Night Variety.’ Ironically his first performance, which is shown as an extra on this DVD, saw him talking about ‘The Generation Game.’ He could never have guessed that a few years later he’d be replacing Bruce Forsyth as its presenter. His appearance on that show was a massive hit and he was booked for the rest of the series.

Where do I start?.... He was not only a brilliant comedian, truly one of the wittiest and funniest minds I have ever met, but of course, in addition, a superb musician, gifted with an astonishing voice, and an innate musicality which was entirely intrinsic and personal, since he had never had any formal musical training. We shared, too, I think, a complete understanding of the characters we were playing, and it was this that made them appear Grayson became one of the biggest names on British TV. Fans so real and believable. couldn’t get enough of his stories about friends such as Slack Alice, With the series now out on DVD do you Everard and the postman, Pop It In Pete. ‘The Larry Grayson think you'll win a new generation of Show’ ran for two series and are all here to be enjoyed. A simple format with a bit of stand-up, some sketches and a song at the end fans? that always seemed to go slightly wrong (just wait till you meet his I certainly hope so - humour has changed a backing group ‘The Takeaways’). Oh and you’ll be forever great deal since Hinge and Bracket first wondering how the ferrets owned by his pianist are getting on. appeared on the entertainment scene. I am The sketches are fantastic, we see Larry playing rugby, working in heartened by the reaction of some English a roadside café, on a building site and even refereeing a wrestling friends here in France - their children had never, match. It’s just a major surprise that you have to wait until the last as far as I know, heard of the ladies, but I episode of series two for the shuttlecock joke to take place. loaned them a couple of 'unofficial' copies of the TV episodes, and their 9-year old son was Also on the DVD are the one remaining episode of his chat show entranced, and now quotes Hinge and Bracket ‘Shut That Door’, a one-hour special looking back at classic movies, two half-hour programmes looking at his life and an lines to me from time to time. hilarious appearance on ‘Sunday Night at the London Palladium’ It would be nice to find that there is something with a very unwanted but hilarious guest at the end. This is a enduring about the work we did all those years fantastic collection of one of the funniest comedians I know, now all we need is the BBC to get their act into gear and release the ago. Generation Game. For more information go to www.networkdvd.co.uk


Ugly Betty is Back! The third series of 'Ugly Betty' has just started on Channel 4 and E4. As often seems to be the situation, Betty (America Ferrera) has to make a big decision about what to do with her life, and which man to do it with. The first episode of the new series featured Lindsay Lohan as Betty’s arch-rival, Kimmie, and other guests lined up for the show include Adele who appears as herself. So what else is lined up for the new series, time for America Ferrera to spill the beans. So America can you tell us a little bit about the evolution of your character this season? Well, we begin the season with a little bit of a blank slate. I mean, the writers took away the "love triangle" that Betty's been in for most of season two and they became really focused on the thing that she wanted, which was her work. She wanted to move to the city and kind of grow up a little and find a l i t t l e independence from her family and not let her social life get in the way of her career. What I think is really interesting about season three is the question of who Betty is - this has been challenged in certain situations and parallels have been drawn between Betty and Wilhelmina. Wilhelmina, who's supposed to be the most evil person on the show, and Betty, who's supposed to be the moral upstanding person on the show we start to see that the things that separate them are only their choices and that their wants are very similar - the things that they want out of life make them more alike than they are different. In one episode, Wilhelmina says to Betty, "You know, you'll see you're like me...you're a career girl." Wilhelmina chooses her career over love and her personal life. I think that that's a really interesting thing to bring out this season, that what defines us are our choices and that Betty isn't immune to that or to making mistakes. And I think she wants a lot out of her career and a lot out of her life and how much she's willing to sacrifice in her personal life for that career will become a big question for her.

On other Betty shows in the world, at some point, Betty has a 'look' change...are you looking forward to it? Do you think it's coming soon somewhere in the future? It's so interesting when it comes to our show because they haven't followed the original format of it. I know that in the Columbian version, the Mexican version, Betty becomes beautiful and marries her boss. I don't think that's ever what they pictured when they thought of this version of it, so I don't know where they're going with it. I do know that Betty is growing. She's growing in her career as she's growing emotionally and maturing and if you've been watching, you might notice that there is this slight change in her fashion and the way she dresses. I think that Betty's sense of style or lack of sense of style is such a fun thing about her character. And I don't ever think that we ever want to lose that individual touch. Patricia Field, who was there when we created the image for Betty in the pilot, is back on the show since we've moved back to film in New York and I think she's moving Betty's style on. You know that if she's been at a fashion magazine for two years and she knows how to talk on the phone with the fashion designers, even though she does it in her own way, she's going to pick up some things about the way people dress and she's going to do it on her own. If people want belts, okay, I'll find a belt, but it's going to be a butterfly belt that's this big and takes up half of my body. You know if I'm going to wear heels, I'll wear heels that have like a really big flower in the middle of it or whatever so, I think Patricia Field is having a really fun time with letting Betty's sense of style grow with how much she's growing on the inside. I don't know if it's ever going to get to the place of, you know, black Prada suits or contact lenses, I don't think that's her future, but I never know. What do you think when you see the style of Betty for the first time every episode? I love it. You know what I mean? The braces, the glasses, the wig and the clothing, you know, it's just crazy to look at. She's such a character, but that's the part I enjoy. That's what I love so much. I'm not an actor because I want to play myself. I'm an actor because I love digging into a rich character. I actually really love watching the clothes on every character on the show. I mean, the characters of Mark and Amanda can look as ridiculous as Betty does. They do it with more designer labels and higher fashion and it probably looks better, but sometimes, they're wearing some pretty ridiculous things too that look just fine and I think that the fashion is such a treat to watch when we're on the show because Pat Field is a visionary. She doesn't copy anyone. She creates her own trend. Whenever something she does has become a trend, she wants to move on she never wants to stay in the present, she's


always looking for the something new or some way to make Rhona? "I thought she was a nice girl. She's got things the next trend. She's an artist and we're so lucky to have buzzing around in her head which I don't understand, her. but I've only known her for a week. She seemed to be a nice girl, apart from having ideas in her head that she The show does make fun of the absurdities of the was going to not to anything. fashion industry. Do you get feedback from people who work in real magazines? Stan added " You realise stuff when another woman Yeah. And thankfully, it's all very positive and people really is in the house, doing things - or not doing things. I enjoy it and laugh at themselves. And a lot of the know she's a lesbian, but I think I got the man. She absurdities are based in wouldn't work. I suppose in a relationship like that, reality, so I get a lot of somebody's got to be the man and somebody's got to calls from people who be the woman." Unwritten law number three is that are assistants and say, there's always got to be a husband who loves his wife "You know, sometimes but rarely shows it but gradually learns the error or his it's worse." So I think that ways. Stan did gradually learn some lessons as Rhona it's good that the people demanded a few complements from him each day and in the fashion industry ended with a candle-lit dinner. and in the magazine industry are taking it with a sense of humour.

Welcome to The Club

Ugly Betty is on Channel In another life a few years ago as Editor of the local gay 4 on Wednesdays from magazine in Portsmouth I included a soap opera called 24th June at 10pm. ‘The Club’ Well, the characters have been left in limbo for a fair while now so it’s time to bring them back. So here’s what’s happened so far and we have a new edition on page 25 of ‘Scene Life’ with the next episode online on July 10th and every Friday after that. So what’s it all about then? This might shock you but it’s set in a gay club where everyone seems to have at least one skeleton in the cupboard, all of which will eventually come out if you see what I mean. Clive (32) has just joined the club as assistant manager which is a bit of a fall from grace for him as he used to be the As you read this article, Rhona Cameron is probably manager of a large club in London. That all came to a hungry or at least talking about food. It's more than likely scandalous end though and although he doesn’t know it because that's all Rhona seemed to talk about during her yet, Clive has his young boyfriend Jimmy (20) to 'Celebrity Wife Swap' with Liverpool comedian Stan blame. Clive only got this job because the manager Boardman. used to be his boyfriend a few years ago, not that Jimmy knows that. For some reason this series has a fascination with Scouse celebrities having previously paired up Freddie Starr with The Drag Hostess of the karaoke night is the far less Sam Fox and Pete Burns with Neil Ruddock. Perhaps wonderful than thinks Betty Bender (39), so called there's an unwritten law for the programme declaring you because it seems she’s always out on a bender. Betty simply need a Scouser and a member of the LGBT dreams of fame and glory (and an unlimited supply of community. Unwritten law number two is probably that one vodka) but is always being late for work (if he bothers to of the husbands has to be pretty much bone idle around the turn up that is) and his drinking has got a lot worse house expecting his wife to do everything for him and Stan since splitting up from her boyfriend. Betty has recently certainly fulfilled that role. Poor Rhona was expected to had an audition for a late-night quiz programme on a pick Stan up from the pub that was two miles away after cable channel only watched by people who have lost another drinking session with his mates. When those their remote and can’t change channel. mates came round to the house Rhona was in the kitchen Sarah is 21, works behind the bar and has every girl in making the smallest butter-free sandwiches in the world but the club chasing her. However she’s in love with Jude being such a housewife really wasn't going to work for but all is not going well. Jude is 39 and has been Rhona. Vacuuming the house and doing all the cleaning married since she was a teenager. Since joining the wasn't on her agenda. Meanwhile Stan's wife, Vivienne, club as a part-time bookkeeper she’s started a found herself with Rhona's partner, Suran. Vivienne relationship with Sarah but is finding it difficult to leave definitely wasn't a fan of lesbians and the possibility of them her husband. They’re about to celebrate their 20th being parents but that all changed as she gradually learnt wedding anniversary and after spending too much time more about how Suran and Rhona lived. concentrating on that, it’s driven Sarah into the arms of the Lisa, the 18-year old who’s been asking her out for Talking about the show Stan Boardman admitted that when the past few weeks. he first saw Rhona he didn't actually recognize her and "hadn't seen any of her work" and in fact thought "she was The story continues on page 25 one of them off Mel and Sue." So what did Stan think of

I Wonder What Rhona Wants For Dinner!


Avenue Q

Missing Since Monday

Have you ever found yourself worrying about the welfare of Sooty? I mean this poor bear can't speak (ok he's a bear but it's n e v e r s t o p p e d Sweep the dog chatting away) and he never gets off with Sue does he? Of course Sooty is just a puppet but then again so are Kate Monster and Princeton but I've never seen Sooty and Sue doing a 69.

I’m not sure what the exact figure is for people in the UK who have been reported missing but I bet it’s a total that would shock me. When someone does go missing it’s more than the person themselves who is affected. There’s the family and friends and even people who never knew the person concerned who become emotionally affected by the story.

There is quite simply no theatre experience like 'Avenue Q,' Initially it's strange because you see the puppets but also the actors operating them and they're singing too and no sign of any ventriloquism lessons here. After a short while though you just forget this and find yourself immersed in the usual stories told in puppet shows such as homosexuality, homelessness, an obsession with porn on the internet and getting it on with a monster. Yes there is quite simply no theatre experience like 'Avenue Q'. Princeton moves into the run-down block of flats run by Gary Coleman and instantly there's an attraction between him and Kate Monster who's gone a fair while without a boyfriend but then again what do you expect from a monster? Oops sorry I shouldn't write such comments as that because it may upset any monsters who are reading this magazine. Then again it just proves that as the song goes everyone's a little bit racist.

‘Missing Since Monday’ was presented at the Nuffield Theatre from June 11-13 by their Youth Theatre Group and certainly grabbed the attention of the audience right from the very start. Before a word was spoken on stage, members of the cast came into the audience showing a poster of a missing girl named Laura Barton and pleading for some kind of information, however large or small, that might solve the mystery of what had happened to her. Try not being interested in the subject matter after that As you may have guessed from the tile of this new musical (dark rather than light and fluffy), Laura has been missing since Monday and her family and friends are going through every emotion in the book. Bit by bit we find out what might have happened to Laura (who’s still missing a year after her disappearance) and the reasons why she may have left home or met an untimely end. Was it friction at home due to arguments with her stepbrother and step-sister? The argument with her boyfriend at the party? A dare that went wrong or has that teacher who doesn’t think twice about inviting under-age girls to pubs have something to do with her disappearance. At the Q&A session held afterwards the teacher seemed to be top of the list.

What was impressive about this performance was the way that you could recognise the emotions that the characters went through. The worried friends who leave messages on her mobile hoping they might be the one who triggers a response. Then there’s the inevitable rumours that start to spread, everything from her being a prostitute to being abducted by aliens. I Meanwhile Rod is trying his hardest to stay in the closet couldn’t help thinking of the Madeleine McCann case though reading a book on the history of musicals isn't going with all those tabloids that revelled in endless rumours, to help divert attention is it? He's madly in love with who most of which resulted in libel pay-outs to the family. he'd rather share a bed with than a messy flat. Pinky and Perky was never like this. The singing is just out of this This was the youth group’s first musical and although world especially from Julie Atherton who's just returned to the singing wasn’t always 100% they all tried their best. the show to play both Kate Monster (who dreams of This is definitely a production that should be shown running a school for monsters though I think I went to one again as it covers a subject that sadly always seems to myself years ago) and love rival Lucy the Slut. ‘Avenue Q’ be happening somewhere. Special praise must go to its can be seen at The Gielgud Theatre in London, for more composer/musical director, Harriet Oughton for such information go to www.avenueqthemusical.co.uk an excellent piece of work.

That's another great thing about this show, the songs are just brilliant as they deal with racism, homosexuality and of course the fact that the internet is all about porn. Will find love with Kate Monster or will the charms of Lucy the Slut be too much for him to resist?


THE CLUB A sleepy and rather exhausted Sarah turned over and somehow managed to croak “I love you”. She couldn’t say the final word though as it wasn’t her girlfriend Jude lying next to her. In fact, who was this rather cute, no very cute, naked blonde who was in her bed and now waking with a big smile all over her face? Sarah got out of bed and ran to the bathroom in an attempt to work out just what the hell was going on. Gradually as she stood under a hot shower the events of last night came flooding back to her. The row with Jude after she said that she wouldn’t be going to the office party because she had to sort out that infernal wedding anniversary do was the beginning of the problem. The good luck vodka binge with Betty Bender hadn’t helped much either come to think of it. Then she remembered how that girl who’d been staring at her in the club for weeks had finally plucked up the courage to speak to her and how they ended up going to the party together. It turned out her name was Lisa and that very same girl was now in her bed, no cancel that, she was walking into the shower and wasn’t going to be getting any clothes wet, perhaps breakfast could wait. A hungover Betty Bender finally got off the couch and began to get ready for an important day. Finally the chance to be on television had arrived, ok it was only ‘Quiz Time’ (it had taken them ages to come up with that title) on a channel with the disheartening nickname of ‘No Viewers TV’ but everyone has to start somewhere don’t they? Another empty bottle of vodka was on the table and that was on top of what had been drunk with Sarah the night before. Finally Betty arrived at the studios and somehow changed into a stunning golden dress (isn’t it amazing what you can get in charity shops these days?), the very same one worn at the karaoke final and all the stains were nearly off the bottom. This was Betty’s big chance, “move over Graham Norton because here I come” echoed through Betty’s mind. “Move over Paul O’Grady too and I don’t need a dog to get the oohs and aahs. My natural talent is all I need to make people laugh and not just when I sing out of tune after a few too many drinks.” Everyone called her Betty these days, it was so much more glamorous than Bert, it was as if his male side didn’t exist these days. All those years working as a stand-up comic in crappy little clubs got Bert nowhere, since starting the drag act at least there was some regular work coming in even though Betty absolutely hated it. Face it, would you like to hear the same out-oftune version of ’Paradise By the Dashboard Light’ every week for the past two years? Betty often wondered why it was that the worst singers had to choose the longest songs.

him. The very same guy that had dumped Betty two months ago! Hold your tongue Betty. Jude woke up soon after Sarah but next to the husband she didn’t love any more. Was it really twenty years since they got married? Back then she did love him but there was always something missing, something else that she wanted. There’d been the occasional fling with other women over the years but every time she returned to her husband and the job of looking after him and their two children. Jude knew full well though that she loved Sarah but could she really leave her husband for her? What if she did and then Sarah went off with one of those girls in the club who were always talking about her? What would she do then? Her husband, Dave, thought that this twentieth wedding anniversary celebration might put the spark back into their marriage. He knew something wasn’t right but just couldn’t work out what it was. That party at the club had been one hell of a night. The usual mixture of food, beer, arguments and sex. Oh and that photocopier would never be the same after what Betty had done to it, a diet was definitely needed for that old Queen. Clive had returned home at about 4am hoping the cleaners at the club wouldn’t be too offended by the huge job they’d have later that morning. His boyfriend Jimmy had refused to come to the party because it would have meant him missing ‘Big Brother.’ Well someone has to watch it. Part of Clive wished he was in the Big Brother house, he might need to find somewhere to hide if Jimmy ever found out he’d screwed his boss at the party but no one saw them thankfully. Sarah finally dragged herself away from Lisa, she had that catering job to do though she was hardly in the mood for it. Her head was in total confusion, she loved Jude but the relationship wasn’t going to go anywhere while she was married and would never leave her husband and two kids. As for Lisa, well she just couldn’t get her out of her head – it’d been hard enough getting her out of the shower, the bedroom and the kitchen. Why bother with Jude when she had a cute sex-crazed girl madly in love with her? But she loved Jude, oh boy what a mess. Sarah hoped that the make-up would hide the lovebites on her neck. She really didn’t want to do this job but the money would help pay off the credit card bill and pay for a present for Jude or Lisa. Finally it was time to start serving the guests at the reception, Sarah was serving the top table with some smoked salmon when she got the shock of her life. What the hell was Jude doing there?

The story continues on July 10th with yet more That was going to change though but then Betty met the shocking revelations. producer Billy Barnett who had his latest boyfriend with


Season 11 of Dallas Out this Month but Where’s Pam? We may have our own soap but the King of Soaps for me will always be ‘Dallas.’ Who could forget following the latest schemes of J.R., wondering how long it’d be before Cliff Barnes turned to the bottle again and wondered just how long Pam had to be asleep to dream an entire season of the show. The complete eleventh season is being released on DVD by Warner Home Video on July 20th. The series delivers more backstabbing entertainment led by an allstar cast including Larry Hagman, Patrick Duffy, Linda Gray, Priscilla Presley and Victoria Principle. Hang on to your Stetsons as one of TV’s longest running dramas gives us thirty more irresistible episodes of cheatin’, lyin’ and tomcattin’, as the eleventh season picks up the action. J.R. (Larry Hagman) may be down, but he’s never out. After Ewing Oil collapsed in disgrace in season 10 some folks would expect season 11 to feature a J.R. who’s learned his lesson. Not Dallas fans – they know that the only lesson J.R. ever learned was do unto others before they do unto you as he claws his way back up to the top. The series also includes more gripping drama as Bobby (Patrick Duffy) loses Pam (Victoria Principal) after the injuries sustained in her car crash, Cliff (Ken Kercheval) meets a broken-down wildcatter with dreams of gusher glory and Sue-Ellen (Linda Gray) discovers that revenge is sweet. If that isn’t enough a new crop of drop-dead gorgeous vamps with big schemes and bigger hair make life even more interesting for J.R.... and two murder cases grab headlines. The series also bids a farewell to Jenna Wade (Pricilla Presley) and Ray Krebbs (Steve Kanalay). We have a copy of the DVD up for grabs. To win the DVD simply answer this simple question. Answers have to be sent to our email address: scenelife@live.co.uk by July 16th. Who did Sue Ellen have an affair with, was it: A) B) C)

Rocky Dusty Woody

Coming soon to SCENE LIFE

Pride Pro Wrestling More revelations in THE CLUB Previews of the Pride events around the UK


Scene Life Update 1a