Virginia Barton

6 May 2014: The play’s the thing


6 May 2014


keep-calm-and-happy-first-anniversaryIt’s a year to the day since the Beloved Snail crawled onto the web. Not with all guns blazing but with dogged intention, and a good kick of encouragement from Mr Webmaster. This unseen presence ensures all is seemly and grammatical; and without him, and yes it is a “he”, no Commonplaces would have happened. I thank him sincerely, and wish him to know that to celebrate the Snail’s debut, a visit to the theatre is planned.


As a schoolgirl my role as one of Several Monks was overshadowed by Vanessa Redgrave’s St Joan. The following year she played Mole in Wind in the Willows, to my Third Carol Singer. So it continued throughout our school years until she went on to F and F and I didn’t.


I was reminded of her because I’m going to see Pygmalion this week, a role she has surely played. As friends of a sort, we never kept up, although there’s a good pic of us in BH’s Book-room: Vanessa as Captain (of course) with me as Vice Captain of the lacrosse team!


The snappy title of this CP struck me as ambivalent so I looked up the precise quote and happened upon a website worthy of bookmarking: If you have time to spare (or waste), this treasure trove will lead you from one quote to another, each more teasing than the last.

I found “the play’s the thing” and, a few clicks later, stumbled across the Canary Dance, complete with an example, accompanied by Lully’s music, on YouTube! I bet you can’t execute the steps — neither could I — but having a go was almost as good exercise as lacrosse, and considerably less dangerous.


It would be grand if you partner me into a second year of CP’s!






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