Little shop

The Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park has its summer musical, Little Shop of Horrors.

I am sure you have seen the film, maybe even the musical. Apparently I am the only person not to have.

So, it’s good fun, to a point. Lots of green everywhere, a bit of dancing, some good singing. lots of nice costumes and a really great band, as ever.

Doing away, kind of, with the plant has been described as innovative, but actually seems to negate most of the fun of plot, especially as the performer replacing it is poor and you can’t understand what he is singing.

The songs are fairly unmemorable, and, rather like Rocky Horror, it doesn’t amount to much in the end. This is no commentary on modern day life. There’s no subtlety here. Apparently some of the cast are B list stars. None I had heard of except Forbes Masson, who seems busy these days.

You may be able to get tickets, and you may enjoy it.

Chuckle along

People die all the time, of course. Sometimes someone famous dies, and the press and tv do an obit. In these days of social media, anyone can comment about what the person contributed to the world, good or bad. After a day or so, unless it is someone hugely famous, it gets forgotten, kind of.

So, it was announced yesterday that someone who appeared on tv and stage under the name Barry Chuckle died. Not his real name, of course, but we will call him Mr Chuckle.

You may well not have heard of him, but he and his brother had a very long running children’s tv show and were very popular. They weren’t really my era, and I have never watched them, so have nothing to comment on.

Except, the comments from, well, everyone, rich and famous, or just ordinary. It continues today. It has been headline news.

Why? Because Mr Chuckle had entertained them when they were young, in a genuinely funny, perhaps rather silly act that had no malice, perhaps some cartoony violence, something that people remembered fondly. Those who knew him said he was genuinely a nice person, and I am sure he was. It seems to come out of the screen.

Rather like John Noakes, who died a while back, or Oliver Postgate, these people shape our characters when we are young.

I hope that Mr C understood the love from his fans. I am sure his brother and family do.