Check out a great new blog that’s been started for 42 Worcester ~ it would be good to know what you think of it and to have your suggestions for improvements and features.
This is an interactive session I ran at Hillcrest for a bit of fun at the ‘Round the Campfire’ Gothic Horror Halloween event in 2011. First the audience was split into three groups, and I gave each group a creature name and asked them to demonstrate the noises that the creatures make:
Owl: Twit twoo
Bat: Creak and flap wings
I asked them each time the animal name was heard to do their thing – and we tried it: owl (pause), pig (pause), bat (pause) (where it says pause, I paused to let them practise, and they did!) Then I started to read the story:
There once was a lad who lived in Wood Cottage, which was surrounded by a wood in an area called Crow’s Nest.
He was a swineherd, he tended pigs (pause), there were several being fattened for market and they were getting big; their tempers got no better with age and though he feared them, they feared him more, he kicked them and poked them with a stick if they got too close. The owls (pause) and bats (pause) watched and waited. The pigs (pause) fixed him with piercing evil eyes that shone red in the moonlight and charged him when he went to the pen, even with his stick he was getting shoved and butted more and more often. He was stoic, he had his stick, they had to be fed and today he’d been told to feed them in the night; they must be ready for market soon.
In the black of night, he lay under thin grey blankets, shivering with cold and listening to owls (pause), bats (pause) and the pigs (pause) who never seemed to stop snorting and squealing bad-temperedly. He’d heard tales of pigs (pause) disposing of bodies; unresolved murders covered by snuffling, squealing, snorting pigs (pause). (Aside) They’ll eat anything y’know – some will remember the Kempsey case where it was alleged he feed the wife to the pigs.
The bats (pause) fluttered and squeaked, the owls (pause) hooted, it was time for the night feed.
This night the pigs (pause) were louder and scarier than ever, the bats (pause) flapped, the owls (pause) hooted and the lad trembled. He gathered his courage and his stick and went to slop pigswill into the troughs.
And the owls (pause) flew down at him, the bats (pause) creaked their wings about him until he fell down and dropped his stick. The pigs (pause)… ate him.
Polly Robinson © 2012
Thursday 12 April 18:30 for a 19:00 start – Ludi Cereales – the second open mic evening around the campfire with Vigornia, Parole Parlate (spoken word) and 42 our local Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy writers’ club – join us for chili and dunking bread – bring your own drinks! – performances from writers – prize for best fancy dress on the theme – you’re welcome to read your own work [between 5-10 minutes], just let us know and it’s yours if there are spaces left! Just £7.50 each – proceeds to Worcestershire Breast Unit Campaign – wear boots or sensible shoes and don’t forget to bring a torch!
42 Worcester – Open Mic Night (Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy) celebrated its first birthday in style Wednesday 28 March 2012 at The Lunar Bar above The Swan with Two Nicks, Worcester. The theme of Nosferatu, a classic 1922 German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok, was introduced by Andrew Owens and the monster mash birthday bash was off!
Worcestershire Film Festival’s Simon Munn ran a compilation of great Nosferatu shots interspersed with quotations from the film, which added to the atmosphere of the evening. Simon told of the legacy of Nosferatu and how a bootleg copy of the film secured Nosferatu’s place as a cult film. Murnau made many other films but nothing that matched Nosferatu, which, Simon said, is a ‘near lost masterpiece’.
Andrew was pleased to announce that the 42 website has been launched today, designed by Angela James www.42openmicnight.co.uk and said ’42 started 25 March 2011 and is a tribute to everyone who has ever performed and contributed to the event. This evening is dedicated to Damon Lord with condolences to Damon and his family; Damon was to have performed tonight but could not attend due to bereavement’.
Glenn and Angela James, the co-founders of 42, are suffering with flu, Glenn sent apologies, ‘So sorry not to be present, our best wishes for everyone to enjoy the evening’.
Geoff Robinson read two pieces from Glenn James, the first started off with a dramatic ‘ATTEND!’ followed by an explanation of Nosferatu, which included the lines ‘We are the descendants of those bards in the firelight, we are the story-makers and the weavers of nightmare’. This was followed by Founding Fathers Glenn’s story set in an auditorium with two thirds of the audience undead and a cool comment on the number of broken mirrors.
Gothic Diva Suz Winspear was the very first performer at 42, tonight Suz read Sapphires about a relationship with ‘the only one I have ever loved’ a man with white hair ‘almost luminous in the moonlight’. This piece could almost have been called ‘Confessions of a Vampire’, a great story that kept to the theme of the evening.
Ian Ward followed Suz. Ian is a regular performer at 42 and said his inspiration comes not from Dracula or Nosferatu but rather from Buffy the Vampire and True Blood. Ian read five separate pieces; one described humans as ‘domesticated blood donors’, another referred to ‘tough conversations’, and one told that vampires have feelings too, in which the line ‘the swish of her silks and satins’ stood out.
The break gave everyone the opportunity to chat, some had seen ads at the University of Worcester and Glenda and Jim had seen the article in the Worcester Standard, it was great to see new people present alongside the regulars.
Andrew Owens opened the second set with his story about being a vampire and not being able to bask in the sunlight or enjoy a sunrise – all about a lost soul who resents the living.
Michael R. Brush read his short story involving a werewolf and Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes and Moriarty ‘the inhabitants of a Scottish keep’, followed by the third part of four from his serial – we’re all looking forward to the final part of this great sci-fi story in April at Ludi Cereales, the celebration of Spring ‘around the campfire’ event at Hillcrest, Worcester.
William Shatspeare is a renowned poet who performs at The Sunday Express in Digbeth and The Hollybush, a great set from William incorporating Richard III and Buddy Holly, even a poem called Lunar Sea Blues, very fitting for an event in The Lunar Bar. We loved the short poem about an androgynous, rum-drinking Haitian Spirit and a Mermaid linking fates and creating quakes.
John Taylor performed two poems tonight. A Life Vampyric ending with the lines ‘The moral of this tale? With maidenhood a dying trend / Occasionally a bloody steak is sometimes your best friend’ and The Plains of Lhee. Great to hear John’s work, we’re more used to him introducing other performers at 42.
Raine Evans was next up with his story My Killing Lifestyle Part 1 – Raine said he had intended to read Part 2 – there was empathy in the room when Raine explained that the Xbox was responsible for him not managing to complete it!
Andrew Owens’s short story Haunting Remorse told of a son who died, a wife who died, and the haunting remorse that followed. Finally, Polly Robinson got back to the theme of Nosferatu with her poem He Drinks Blood.
John finished the evening with a reminder that Ludi Cereales, a celebration of Spring around the campfire with 42, Parole Parlate and Worcester Vigornia Rotary, takes place at Geoff and Polly’s place in April and thanked everyone for their contributions tonight. Our regular contributors from USA could not be included on this occasion as time simply ran out. Next time!
Polly Robinson © 2012
From the organisers of 42 – an invitation to join in the fun at their first birthday bash
Join us for a Monster Mash at our Birthday Bash, as 42 turns one this month. It has been a fantastic year & it seems fitting that we get to celebrate the 1st anniversary of 42 at the same time as the 90th anniversary of the premiere of “Nosferatu,” by F. W. Murnau. What a great theme for our Birthday bash!
PERFORMERS: To be confirmed
INFO ON 42 OPEN MIC NIGHT:
‘42’ is Worcester’s first & only Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy Open Mic Night for all those who love the genres & everything in between. Let your voice be heard!
Calling all writers, poets, musicians, performance artists, actors and comedians, if you have an interest in these areas we want you to get involved!
‘42’ takes its name from Douglas Adams’ great answer to Life, the Universe and Everything. We thought that was pretty all encompassing and a really snappy name which people would embrace. This is THE genre fans open mic night, and we want them to get in touch and make their voice heard!
INFO FOR PERFORMERS:
There are a few provisos which we must outline at the outset, such as the fact that although we embrace darker works we don’t encourage superfluous gore or scenes of lingering torture for the sake of celebrating cruelty. We do not encourage the humiliation, or attack of anyone due to their ethnic origin, religious beliefs, or the fact that their great grandfather six times removed was kidnapped by aliens. Although a degree of swearing could be part of an artist’s dramatic flow in a given horror story, we ask you to keep any such sequences within a reasonable dramatic format which will sound plausible!
So please respect these guidelines and we will welcome your contribution warmly.
Each performer will be allotted a 10-15 minutes span for their set, and we ask contributors to respect this timeframe! Please get in touch well in advance of the advertised evening if you wish to take part and have specific requirements for sound, etc.
We are always looking for new writers and performers to get involved in the event, so if you would like to become involved we would be chuffed to bits to hear from you! So get in touch!
Gothic Horror Halloween took place 31 October 2011 at Hillcrest in Worcester around a campfire. The writers group ’42′ joined with Vigornia Rotary to provide an open mic evening – scarily 42 people attended! Funds raised for The Worcestershire Breast Unit Campaign totalled £280.00 – many thanks to all who came along. This was the first of, hopefully, many events so watch out for more! Definite plans for Halloween 2012. Performers included John Taylor, Richard Bruce Clay, Ian Ward, Suz Winspear, Johnny Thunder, Geoff Robinson, Polly Robinson, Andrew Owens, Fergus McGonigal, Darren Farley