Birdsong and Phoenix Collective Gig

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What a great week!

This is just a catch up on this week really to fill you in as I feel bad about not updating as much.

On Monday I caught up with a friend I used to go to school with. We went for lunch and saw the new transformers film which was great,even though the film wasn’t really my type of thing.

Tuesday I went to Brighton and met up with one of my online friends,Emily. We had a wander around town and ended up getting a bit carried away talking to a sales assistant in Cath Kidston about Mcfly. We also went dream house shopping. Only wish I was moving to London now so I could buy all the gorgeous stuff I saw.

We also had fun on the penny slots and won a mini minion on the hook a duck game at the seafront. Most people know I like minions so I was happy. Hence the minion selfie with Emily.

I was orginally supposed to go to Eastbourne on Wednesday to watch Birdsong again but ended up going on Saturday instead. Kind of glad I went then as I think going both Saturday and Wednesday would have been a bit much,no matter how much I enjoyed it.

Thursday,Friday and Saturday morning were spent working on more drawings and getting the last few bits together for the gifts I planned on giving the cast.  Which turned out great,despite the rush that morning. I ended up writing the cards on the train going up.

I feel very lucky to be able to have gotten the chance to see the amazing cast in action twice. It was amazing the first time,but even better the second time,probably because it was their penultimate performance and they were coming to the end of the run. I noticed a few subtle changes from when I saw it on Winchester but it still worked perfectly.

After the performance me and mum made our way round to stage door,gift bag in hand to wait for the cast to come out.

I wasn’t sure they would but I hoped they would as I got a tweet from one of the actors letting me know they would be out at some point in between shows. To my luck around half 5 they did.

Elizabeth came out first followed by the rest of the cast-Selma,Jonny,Carolin,Sam and George. Each took the time to stop and chat and sign and take photos,which was great as I was the only one there. Having been a bit of an avid fan of both the play and the actors I was a bit nervous about how they would react,especially as I’d done drawings of them. They were all absolutely lovely and I can’t thank them enough.

The encounter with the cast went a bit like this.

Me(to Elizabeth) hi can I get you to sign my programme?
Elizabeth: ofcourse- did you enjoy it?
Me: yeah,it’s actually my second time seeing it.
Elizabeth: thankyou for all your support.
Me: you’re welcome. Can I get a photo?
E: yeah,sure. Shall we get someone else to take it? *selma takes my phone and takes the photo*
*After selma had taken the photo I ask her if she can sign my programme. She finds the page and signs.
Me(to Selma) can I give you these? *hands over the gifts.
Selma: thankyou so much. Guys we have presents.
Sam: If you put them inside we’ll open them later.
Me:(to Selma) can I get a photo?
Selma: ofcourse.
Jonny: opens his arms for a hug. Hey how are you?
Me: I’m good thankyou,how’re you? *Jonny take a photo of me and Sam and then we swap.
Sam: *after taking our photo together rubs my shoulder. Aww bless you.
I then go over to where Carolin and George are standing.
Me(to George) I like your flower.
George:thankyou,it’s Macmillan I think.
Me(to carolin) can you sign my programme.
Carolin: ofcourse.
Me:(to George) I don’t know how you can get out of character so quickly.
George: you get used to it after a while.
Me(to Carolin) can I get a photo?
Carolin *nods* we take a really nice selfie.
Me: can I get you to sign my program too George?
George: I have to warn you my handwriting is terrible.
George signs the program and we take a photo.

We say our goodbyes and I go back to where mums waiting.

Mum: where’s the lid for the pen?
Me: oh
Just as I’m about to go back to get my lid from George I hear him mutter damn under his breathe and he calls my name and hands me the lid back.

We then said more goodbyes and George and Carolin walked down the street. Me and mum followed behind to go to the station and selma cut in front of us to catch up with them.

Me and mum made our way to the station to go home. Whilst I was waiting I checked my twitter to find that George had favourited my tweet from this morning. A few hours later I checked again and I had received these lovely tweets and a follow from Sam.

I can’t thank the cast enough for putting on such a great show night after night. I feel very lucky to have been able to have seen the show twice and met such talented actors. I wish them all the luck for their next projects and they’ve each made a fan in me.

Thankyou guys.

Sunday was the day of The Phoenix Collective gig. The band the orginally cast of Once formed together as they liked performing together so much.

I got on the train and 10.25 and by 11am my Sunday had been made. I checked my twitter and I had a tweet from the birdsong tour tagging me in a photo of Simon Lloyd with the picture I drew of him. The caption ‘Bear with his fabulous portrait by @pontinemily. Needless to say I was happy and couldn’t stop smiling. Even more so when Simon replied with ‘a very proud looking bear indeed’

This is why those guys are a awesome!

I arrived in London and met Tim feeling really happy and excited. I relayed the conversations of the Saturday with him to which he smiled and spoke in the right places which I’m very grateful for. It seemed all I did was talk yesterday.

After KFC we made our way to Highgate where the gig was. The Bogaloo is a small pub with tables and stalls with a space for people to play at the front.

When we got there it was pretty empty. We grabbed a seat and got the drinks in whilst we watched The Phoenix Collective sound check and waited for the other acts to arrive.

Declan Bennett arrived and said hello to everyone including waving at me whilst he was talking to some women at the table next to us and asked if I was ok.

I’ve been a fan of his since seeing him as Guy in Once and his music has since been on repeat, so being on the same room and listening to his set meant a great deal.

The support acts were great. Nick Edward Harris made playing the guitar effortless, whilst Scarlett Starlings looked they had great fun having a dance to their set.

Forty Elephant Gang were just epic sounding like a cross between Mumford and Sons and The Beatles when they first started out as the Quarrymen. They got the biggest cheer and psyched everyone up for Declan’s set.

After a ten minute break,Declan came on stage to a huge applause and played song from his album Record Breakup including Everything More,Love Wins,Freer and The Longer I Leave It. I couldn’t help but sing along with him. He’s amazing and to see him live was awesome!

The Phoneix Collective closed the gig with some Irish folk songs and transported me back to Dublin for the last hour. Everyone’s feet were tapping and everyone was singing along. In that moment we all became one sharing our love of music. Nothing beats that feeling!

After a great rendition of Chandlers Wife from Once, much to the audience pleasure which went on for a good five minutes because the audience kept singing the same part over and ever again the gig came to an end.

It made a change for a Sunday. Great company accompanied by great music. Definitely one of the best Sundays.

After the gig I waited to see if I could talk to Declan afterwards which I managed to do.

He turned round and saw me and the conversation went like this.

Declan: oh hey,how are you? *opens arms for a hug*
Me: *hugs him*
Dec: did you enjoy it? It was fun wasn’t it?
Me: it was great. Can I just say thankyou. Record break up has been on repeat since I saw you in once back in January and I love it.
Dec: ah bless you thankyou that’s lovely.
Me: can I get a quick photo?
Dec: ofcourse.
Me: sets up my phone to take a selfie.
Dec: oh wow are we actually doing this? Are we actually taking a selfie?
Me: takes the selfie* thankyou so much.
Dec: aw you’re welcome.
Me: when are you back in Eastenders?
Dec: the end of the month.
Me: I loved your tattoo by the way.
Dec: oh the one on my neck?
Me: yeah. That’s mine *shows him my tattoo.
Dec: ah come what may. That’s lovely. *walks over to Tim and shakes his hand. Alright mate,Declan.
Dec: so are you guys heading off now?
Me: yeah.
Dec:ah thankyou so much for coming. I’m glad you had a good time.
Me: thankyou. *opens arms for another hug*
Dec: *hugs me back* See you soon.

Needless to say I came out of the venue smiling like a loon and talking non stop again.

What a great way to end an awesome weekend.

Thanks to everyone who made this last week great.

I love you all.

What have you all been up to?

Lots of love

E ❤️

Ps: I woke up this morning to the final tally of the money Birdsong raised for Help for Heroes. So proud and happy that I got to see it twice. Help for heroes is a great charity and one that I was raised to support so congratulations to these talented guys. Can’t wait for next tour.

❤️❤️❤️

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