The Universal Machine

So hungry it hurts.  So hungry that actually I’m not sure I can eat.  It’s a hard thing to describe – that moment you pass through hunger and out the other side and the notion of food is actually strangely repellant.  Must eat.  Can’t quite work out how.


The reason for the hunger is that today marks nearly the end of two weeks of technical rehearsals.  Musicals musicals musicals – you know, I’m not sure I can remember what it was like not lighting musicals.  I feel sure that there was a time when I didn’t dream in quavers, or wake at three a.m. in a cold sweat over the cue partition that I clearly missed but would make everything better.  I close my eyes and all I see are coloured lights moving over the back of my retina, or channel data shrugging along a dubious dimmer curve.

Let’s see if I can drag my brain towards what I’m trying to say.

The show I’ve been lighting this week is called the Universal Machine.

It’s a musical about the life of Alan Turing at the New Diorama Theatre.


When I read the first draft it was with with trepidation… and finished with delight.  Because – and here’s the odd thing – it works.

It more than works.  And through the mild delirium, I’m really, really proud of the show, and of every single person who’s worked on it.  One of those few pieces where I found myself, despite being thoroughly saturated in the script, forgetting to catch my breath.  Not often I get to say that; happy to say it now.

Photo by Richard Davenport.

One Comment:

  1. Now, I’m very much a country boy at heart, I love living in a place where a twenty minute walk can have me out in the countryside, a half hour bike ride can have me in a nearby village, drinking an outstanding pint in the pub, but there are times when living in a major city like London has its advantages, and this is one of them.
    Having easy access to so many theatres, museums, galleries, and music venues, means that it’s a doddle to get tickets and tube or bus into the centre to catch a show on a whim.
    I, on the other hand, look forward to a 200 mile round-trip, with parking or train fare on top of the ticket price, along with the necessity to take time off work in order to see a show.
    It’s not something I get to do very often, it makes for an expensive day out.
    Shame, I would have enjoyed seeing this production.

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