We started 2016 with a practically sold out show in the Stables in Milton Keynes; I’d say that’s a pretty good start of the year!
Our van broke down recently and it couldn’t be repaired in time for this show, so we had to use my car this weekend. I still drive a Dutch car and while Paul has driven European cars before, he wasn’t 100% comfortable to drive it, so I knew I would have to drive a big part of the journey myself. Not ideal before having to dance a whole show, but sometimes there’s no other option, really…
We have been to the Stables before (just before Christmas 2014), so we had less surprises about the shape of the stage and the whole setup than last year, which made a big difference in terms of stress on the day to me.
Those who read my blogs on a regular basis remember the recent struggles we have had with my microphone. It has been fixed before our last show in December (about which I only now realise I haven’t written a blog!), but still started popping during that show. We sent the mic away for repair, but on Friday morning it still hadn’t arrived. I did arrive later that day, but by then it was too late to test it.
We did bring a spare headset microphone. It didn’t fit quite as well as my own, so I used several pieces of tape to fix it to my cheek and prayed it would last (knowing that if it didn’t, my mic would move upwards and point to my eye instead of to my mouth). Unfortunately, I could feel the tape getting loose in the second song already… In my first costume change I told the guys to extend the intro of Babooshka because my mic was coming off. Kate's microphone back in 1979 was made out of a coat hanger, which was quite easy to bend and fit, but the ones that are currently made do not bend so easily. I forced the iron wired back of the headset into a weird shape to make the sides fit better and forced the front part to point down instead of up (and prayed I wouldn’t break it in the process).
Other than this minor microphone incident, we had a great show! Our break has been good for us; we all seemed refreshed and the show had a really nice flow. The audience were lovely; all enjoying the show, some miming the lyrics, with a standing ovation at the end! There were many returning visitors, as well as a lot of new faces; both really good for us!
There’s always something that makes a show unique from the others. Something that goes wrong or something that happens in the audience (like the girl and the yo-yo). I didn’t slip or fall, and there were no other weird incidents. But in terms of ‘I was there when…’ the people in The Stables can say that they were there the one night I started Cloudbusting skipping instead of yo-yoing…
When we left Milton Keynes it was snowing. It looked very pretty, but we were aware of the fact that we had to drive home instead of making a snow man. I started driving to at least get us onto the motorway, where Paul could take over. But it kept snowing on and off, so we figured it would probably be safer for me to keep driving, instead of Paul. It seemed to take forever to get home, but we all made it safe and sound to Liverpool. Where there was no snow. Only floods.
A headset microphone, so my story makes more sense