Monthly Archives: November 2013

Britten’s Got Talent – watch out for it!

Britten's Got Talent

Britten’s Got Talent

“There are times when I feel like I have no talent…no talent at all”

I was fortunate enough to attend a ‘rehearsed read through’ of Britten’s Got Talent at Framlingham College on Sunday. I was very keen to see this; local writer Robin Brooks, who has had numerous plays on Radio 4, has written a satirical comedy based on Benjamin Britten’s life in Aldeburgh. I wasn’t sure what the play would be like, but was delighted to find the type of techniques that would work well on radio incorporated into the play; mixing timelines from Britten’s working life to the modern-day with ease. The piece is gently humorous, part innuendo and part cleverly playing with today’s attitudes to homosexuality as much as with views that may have existed in Britten’s own time.


The actors took their roles very well, Keith Hill was gloriously angst ridden and Jonathan Hansler played more characters than I have hot dinners in a week; showing an amazing ability to change from lover to mother, from elderly judge to boy. I was very impressed by Sam Bell who plays a young boy, so effective and very well done. I am looking forward to seeing the production at the New Wolsey Studio in Ipswich from 20th November the full version with music by Matthew Sheeran should be a delight. Well done to Fiona McAlpine and team for a very enjoyable evening.

ps added value to going on 22nd or 23rd matinees they’ll have cake!

Many thanks to Fiona for the photos from a later rehearsal.



Glow in the Dark ‘Shrooms and Exploding Cucumbers

Glow in the dark mushrooms

Glow in the dark mushrooms

Sometimes on holiday you come across little surprises – this time it was life, growing and fighting back.  On a trip to a beautiful olive grove and market garden in Puglia I spotted these fungi growing in the base of an olive tree. I asked if they were edible and was told very firmly NO!  I wish I’d had the where with all with me to do the identification, if I had I would have snuck back once it got dark to take another look. I’m pretty sure the little beauties are Omphalotus olearius aka Clitocybe olearia aka Jack O’lantern; apparently they glow in the dark from the gills when the spores are mature, all very hobgoblin.

Exploding Cucumbers

Exploding Cucumbers

The second treat was the exploding cucumber – equally inedible but if you are not wise in advance you can think you are being shot at by an air pistol the seeds fly at 60 mph!

Looking like an innocent unopened poppy flower the seed pods squirt seeds at you as they fall to the floor.



Watch the second half of this video to see just what goes on.

On return home it was clear that nature had been doing wonderful things in the UK too…

Road Closed

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