February 23rd, 2011

Mini me

RIP His Brigness

Just woke up to the sad news that Nicholas Courtney has died.

For those who don't know, he played the Brigadier in Doctor Who. But he was so much more than just an actor playing a part. For one thing, thanks to having appeared alongside all bar one of the Doctors in the original series, Mr. Courtney had an iconic status; a status compounded by appearances in Big Finish audios alongside Colin Baker and Paul McGann (playing their respective Doctors) and David Tennant (playing Colonel Brimmicombe-Wood), and then capped off by appearing in The Sarah Jane Adventures.

For another, as Toby Hadoke pointed out in "Running With Corridors", he's played a host of other roles on stage and screen in his career as an actor.

Thirdly, he was quite simply an all-round nice chap. I don't think anyone who met him ever had a bad word to say about him. I certainly don't. He was a lovely, charming man, with a mischievous sparkle in his eye, a wicked sense of humour, and a great champion of us fans.

On a personal note, Sarah and I first met at a signing Nicholas was doing at the now defunct Tenth Planet shop in Barking. We gave serious thought to inviting him to our wedding. In the event we didn't, as he was appearing at a convention that weekend. No doubt if he *had* decided our wedding was the better gig, he'd have been the life and soul of the party.

The world, and Doctor Who fandom, is a poorer place this morning with the loss of such a lovely man. Goodbye, Mr Courtney. You'll be greatly missed.

"Chap with the wings there? Five rounds rapid."

Coupling - Stuck in the Giggle Loop

Further to this morning's post...

"Water! As I live and breathe, water!" Nicholas Courtney at Panopticon 2003. On the occasion when he announced that he'd recorded a commentary for The Daemons. That would make a really nice tribute DVD, BBC...
Coupling - Stuck in the Giggle Loop

My tweets

Coupling - Stuck in the Giggle Loop

So, last night.

Thanks to a member of one of the Merlin comms on LJ, I went to the Royal Court - technically to the Jerwood Theatre Upstairs (which I keep wanting to call the Jedward Theatre Upstairs. So cruel) - to see "Our Private Life", a play by Colombian author Pedro Miguel Rozo which featured Colin Morgan in the cast. Don't consider this a review as such. Roughly speaking, I thought it was well done, well acted, enjoyed Colin (of course) and also some of the other actors (especially Adrian Schiller), and generally speaking although it was covering a rather painful subject it did so in a very humourous way. Also, after the play there was a short Q&A with members of the creative team and cast (sadly not including Colin), which provided a very interesting insight into the process that went into translating and adapting the play for this production (in its original production, directed by the writer, the seven characters were played by a cast of five, alternating their roles throughout. Sounds difficult!!!).

The Royal Court is a fascinating venue - two threatres for the price of one (the Jerwood Downstairs was presenting "The Heretic", starring James Fleet and Juliet Stevenson amongst others), as well as a café/bar downstairs. I don't know what the Downstairs theatre is like, but the Upstairs is really lovely and intimate (although I could have done without the three flights of stairs to get there, which fair wore me out...) - it put me in mind of the Bush; I suspect it seats more, and it's got proper seating (which the Bush didn't last time I was there, although I know it's been refurbished a bit since then and may well have changed beyond recognition). I went for the first available seat I could find on entering, which meant I was on the front row. Nice. I'm sort of tempted to maybe start going to the Upstairs at least on a regular basis - after all, the tickets are a mere £20:00! For that matter, I might start going to the Bush again regularly.

But on Saturdays rather than weekdays, as getting there after work was a bit of an effort, and I'm now pretty shattered after not enough sleep.