The Riverside Rooms

At about 11am I enter the ipod’s slip stream and zoom through the cold
grey bluster of London into  the warm buzz
of The Riverside Rooms where   the artist’s
in residence hang out at  Southbank
Centre.  A smiling Shlomo is present  with the Southbank family . And as ever The
studious but humorus Cape Farewell  family.   There’s
a swirl  of smiles and hellos.  Check their links out to see how amazing they

Tonight Cape farewell have a Late
at the Tate
Session.  They are taking
over The Tate Modern which is fifteen minutes further down the Thames.   KT
Tunstall, Shlomo, Marcus Brigstock and many more will be giving talks and
performances tonight.   I would have been too had I not been at The
Lyric tonight.  After Late at The Tate  there’s a post show at The Arts Club in Piccadilly.

It’s good to see Shlo. He’s getting a concert together at The Southbank Centre  for
March 28th with kathak dancer and fellow artist in residence Gauri Sharma.   It’s
going to be special taking  beatbox and
Kathak into new and undiscovered pastures.  

But  I’m here to meet with
my projects manager and Jo Wheeler of  Above The Title so I walk over to
The Royal Festival Hall cafeteria. We are making a  BBC Radio documentary called Child of The State.
It’s our first meeting in what’ll be a an intimate documentary where I reclaim
memory. Gill Lloyd my projects manager at Artsadmin
is a warm presence.  Gill is also exec
producer of my play.  Jo the producer of
The Radio Documentary  is polite cordial and
gives the impression of someone who wants to get the job done which is perfect. 

Originally this documentary was being  made by her colleague who  left Above The Title.   So here
we are at last face to face. We talk for two hours.  It is exhausting.   But I  deserve my childhood memories as much as
anyone else. And though they’ve been taken away from me, I shall find them. A
child of The State  deserves them as much
as anyone else. The meeting ends and hands are shook. In a professional
capacity I trust Jo Wheeler and I couldn’t do this documentary with someone whom
I didn’t trust.  It was an important

After a little administrative work back in The Riverside
Rooms darkness folds over the city outside and  I catch the workhorse  district line to the West London  stable of Hammersmith Lyric Theatre.  I’m in the dressing room and the audience
pours in, Naf the stage manager knocks on my dressing room door to tell me it’s
that time again. I tell her that I don’t want to do it tonight which is what I
tell her every night. In minutes I am on stage for one hour weaving a tale,
sweating crying and laughing inside. It’s an appreciative and live audience. At
10.30pm   I drop onto the train home to East London,  tentative and anonymous  just how I like it.


2 thoughts on “The Riverside Rooms

  1. slightly off topic but…
    I saw your poetry short on 4 last night. I was reading the paper with the TV still on when it started and it totally gripped me. I didn't know it was going to be on so it totally caught me unaware and I had a thoroughly unexpected and thoroughly fulfilling art experience. It made my Monday.
    Christopher Bryan

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