Guys and Dolls

We’re in the eerie calm after the storm now that the week-long run of Guys and Dolls is over.  Jemima was playing Miss Adelaide, her first time in a principal role, and boy what a great role it was for her!  It completely suited her effervescent personality, and the songs were in a good range for her to sing.  The few weeks leading up to the show were hectic, mind, with me taxi-ing her back and forth.  But I remember the mantra I taught myself when the babes were young – make the most of every phase, and don’t dwell on the less pleasant aspects.  Because they grow up all too soon, and those happy moments will soon only be memories.

Matty and Jemima as Nathan and Adelaide

A letter from Adelaide's mother

So we’re making the most of our car time together.  We listen to a bit of Classic FM, to improve her listening skills which she needs to do for her Music GCSE, and we talk about the future.

Adelaide's Lament

She did her Grade 6 ballet in the same week as the show, and I was talking to her ballet teacher while she was in the exam room.  Previously she had encouraged me to persuade Jem not to go to London next year to dance college, but to stay and go to Belfast Met instead.  But when we were discussing her knock-em dead performance, we both agreed that we might reconsider.  I know like any mother, I will support her to the hilt in whatever is the best option for her future, but boy I’ll miss her when she’s gone.


take back your mink

Sadly, we’ve just discovered that she’s too young to go for Lloyd Webber’s next search, which is for Dorothy.  Basically they can’t interrupt compulsory education.  Shame, cos she’d be the right type for that role, but there’ll be other chances.  She was quite sanguine about this, and is being very industrious about preparing for her GCSEs next year.  She’s also busy filling in application forms for the main dance schools that she’s keen on – Laine, Arts Ed, and Bird.  So no doubt we’ll be over to London a few times in the New Year!

New computer

new PC


Behold my new computer!  My previous one, although only 4 years old, constantly gave problems with interenet access>  We’d gone to PC World origionally to get a new wireless card, but the prices of computers fall so rapidly, with a corresponding increase in power, that it made more sense just to buy a new machine.  This little HP baby came complete with a printer/ copier and scanner all in one.  It’s got Windows 7, which I’m still finding my way around, and I also get Word and Excel 2007.


So far so fab!  The updated software is very intuitive – for instance when I stick the SD card from the camcorder into it, it instantly recognises the clips and imports them into Windows Live Movie Maker.  From there, editing is a doddle, and it’s a push button choice of “Upload to Youtube” or “Make a DVD”.


Same with photos on my phone, which in the past have given me great problems.  Now, the computer recognises the pictures and imports them itself, without any need for software from the phone.



Jem has inherited my old one, minus the internet access, but with Word, Excel, Powerpoint and iTunes it’s got lots of features that she needs for homeworks and music.


Now all I need is anme for it – any suggestions?

Just Dance

Jemima was lucky enough recently to get through the first stage of auditions for Just Dance, a reality show to be shown on Sky 1 next year.  We flew to Edinburgh for the next round, unsure of what the format was going to be.  Turned out she had to perform in front of a live audience, complete with bright lights and scurrying camera crew, and be interviewed back stage.  The panel certainly had gravitas in the dancing world – Adam Garcia, Kimberly Pussycat Doll, and Ashley “Diversity” Banjo.  And they were being extremely strict – in the 5 or 6 hours we were there I saw them approve one dancer.  And no, it wasn’t our J.  She’d danced her little heart out – all winsome smiles and graceful limbs.  Her face lit up when Ashley asked her about the music, written for her by her boyfriend.  And all the judges’ comments were constructive and believable.  I was bursting with pride (yes again!) at her ability to cope unprepared with this tough ordeal, and to keep her chin up and keep smiling during the feedback.

Apologies for teh watermark on the video – having just upgraded my ‘puter to one using Windows 7, I’m rather disappointed that Movie Maker still doesn’t import mp4 or wav files, and so in order to capture Matty’s stunning music I had to use a free trial download.