Well yet again I kick off by apologising for the lack of January part 2 and the lateness...severe lateness...of the February GORR. I plead the fact that it has been ludicrously busy and also we’ve been trying to confirm lots of stuff for the remainder of the year and it is all beginning to take shape and I’ll fill you in as much as I can in this GORR Epistle!
Starting with what’s left of February and what’s still to come, there are still three days more left of filming for the wonderful film on the life of Vivaldi that I have been doing for the PERSPECTIVES series on ITV. It has been a joy to be a part of the great team producing this televisual feast and I can truly say that the story of his life and The 4 Seasons in particular is nothing short of eye-opening.
I’ve also started work on the BBC documentary which tells the life and history of the tour bus...well as much as can be told before the watershed anyway! It’s great fun from start to finish and very well put together and sees me out and about in my wonderful old 1984 Dodge Ram which I bought and used on the YES UNION tour and also a couple of ERE tours in the UK. Wonderfully nostalgic. Both the above programmes are looking like they will be broadcast in April.
Just going back a fraction, the concert with the Orion Orchestra, The English Chamber Choir, Katerina Mina and Charbel was simply wonderful. A tremendous atmosphere and I loved every minute of it. It would be wonderful to be able to repeat it and indeed there is already talk of it becoming an annual event as a fundraiser for this wonderful orchestra. I also had a fabulous lunch meeting with Jan Cassidy who manages the orchestra and numerous ideas for joint projects were discussed and I am positive that many of them will actually reach fruition.
There are still a load of one man shows coming up over the next few months and they are all listed here on the site. On the 22nd I fly to the Czech Republic to perform 2 shows there. Mainly piano but there will be a couple of keyboards there as well I am told so that should be fun.
Looking quite a way ahead, but giving good warning to all who may be interested, it does seem almost certain now that Journey to the Centre of the Earth in all it’s glory will be performed at MAGMA in Tenerife on the 17th December with the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra. We intend to make this a “biggie” and there is hope that it may be filmed as well as so many people have asked why the UK tour of Journey was not filmed.
Also looking ahead to April, I will be playing in the stunningly beautiful Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza. Check it out. It has to be the most beautiful and unique theatre in the world. This will be a very special night for sure.
On Saturday May 9th it’s once again the wonderful birthday celebration at the Bloomsbury Theatre for Viv Stanshall. Just a wonderful night and if you’ve not been to one, then you’ve really missed out. Highly recommended!
On the 6th June there will be a concert with myself and the English Chamber Choir at the Granary which will include some new music that I am putting together specifically for this concert, and whilst on the subject of the Granary we are looking to spend quite a few days there recording a rather unusual album with myself and special guests, different ones for many of the tracks. Old material and new and a real mixture. I’ve been working on the idea for over a year and finally have the cast list together that I have been looking for so more new on that over the coming months.
Arthur on Ice for 2016 is slowly gathering momentum and at the moment we’re only half a million quid short of the necessary capital needed to underwrite the project, so we’re nearly there!
Universal are continuing with their releases of the wonderfully remastered A&M catalogue and the reports coming back are just fabulous so I have a big thank you to say to Steve Hammonds and the team for all the hard work they’ve put in and also a very special mention to our own Wayne Smith whose input to Universal has been priceless.
Esoteric continue to release a lot of catalogue CDs having remastered them and in most case have redesigned the sleeves and liner notes, many indeed have been done by Oliver Wakeman, so it’s been kept in the family!
This year is racing by so quickly and already there are plans for trips to Japan in the summer as well as Scandinavia for the end of the year plus all sorts of recording and filming projects so we’re already starting to look at 2016 which seems ridiculous but all exciting stuff.
Now onto the most important area....my weight loss. Not as quick as I’d hoped but half a stone has gone and I’m hoping that another half a stone will have gone by the end of the month. The difficulty seems to be that the disappearing weight never seems to go from the areas you want it to!!...I think it must be a weight thing!
That’s it for now........enjoy the rest of the month and I promise the March GORR will be on time!!!