Last night, I went as a guest of my friend Mister Joe Black to Eat Your Heart Out, a so-called anti-burlesque theatre show. Joe was performing (which was the reason I was there) but the first person on the stage was Masumi Tipsy Saito, a dancer and performance artist from Japan. Acting the part of a hinged doll, complete with facial expressions and wooden movements, her balance and flexibility were inspiring and it was an excellent start to what I would say was an… interesting evening’s entertainment.
Joe’s performances, as always, had me riveted. He’s such a talented individual, making me laugh and melt at the same time (I adore him), that I can see his career going from strength to strength as he becomes better known. He’s still young so he has plenty of time in front of him to become one of the most important vaudeville performers of the twenty-first century. If you get a chance to go and see him on stage, do take it. It’s quite an experience.
Masumi was also on more than once and it was her second piece which really struck me. Playing the part of an anguished child – what the angst was about is not explained, nor is it necessary to know – she was dressed in a baggy T-shirt, wandering down the aisle to the stage munching on an apple and holding a teddy bear. Once at the front, the power coming from the stage was undeniable. Her screams would tear apart the soul of anyone with a beating heart. There was heartbreak, hurt, loneliness and tears, all of which came straight from the gut. I just had to tell her how amazing she was (the last person I did that to was Joe – a little under a year ago – which illustrates how rarely I’m so taken with someone). Performance artists like Masumi Saito and Joe Black do not come along very often. One could say, not often enough. But if too many people did what they do, it would be less of a novelty and their stars would not shine so brightly if everyone was glittering in the same way. So I am quite glad that it is the way it is. It keeps those of us on the fringe happy.
Joe came back with me and slept on the sofa, but not before we’d had some food, talked a lot and finally realised how late it was just before 3 am. It was a nice winding down time. This morning, it was chilled, too. Coffee (from Red Roaster – where else?), breakfast (at lunchtime) and both putting on make-up at the same time before he went to the train station to catch a bus (it’s Sunday and there are always problems on Sundays, especially when the roof collapses one station down the line).
So now the flat is quiet and I will spend the afternoon writing.