This dropped into my inbox yesterday and it looks quite interesting. Barclays Live has launched a dance competition and will be stopping off at various regions around the UK. On September 4th they’re coming to Piccadilly Gardens.
The competition is open to anyone who thinks they’ve got what it takes to become Britain’s next dancing superstar, be it as an individual, duo, group or troupe. Here’s what you have to do. Email Barclays Live at firstname.lastname@example.org with either a link to a YouTube video of you / your dance troupe or send the video as an attachment. You should also include your name, phone number and postcode. The closing date for entries is August 29th.
The top ten entries will be put through to live auditions, which will take place on Saturday 4 September on a stage at Piccadilly Gardens. These contestants will perform in front of a celebrity panel of judges including Strictly Come Dancing’s Brendan Cole, as well as an audience made up of Manchester’s great and good.
The top five acts will then be subject to a public vote to decide the winner via the Barclays Live website.
To give you an idea of what happens on the day, take a look at this video shot on July 31st in Leicester Square.
The winner will come away with £1,000, plus VIP tickets to see Brendan Cole in action.
The Barclays Live auditions will form part of a day-long programme of events, including a dance master class by Brendan Cole and performances by a variety of fantastic dance acts.
Note: Children under the age or 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Today is Black Thursday. It’s the day that the A-Level results are announced in schools and colleges in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The evening news will be full of smiling students clutching transcripts and somewhere in the commentary will be the words ‘targets’ and ‘dumbing down’.
The day I received my A-Level results I thought my life was over. My results were disappointing and I went home in tears. On the way back, somewhere between Higher Lane in Whitefield and the Depths of Despair, my friend came to find me. He’d left early with his own disappointing transcript but came back again to make sure I was okay.
We sat for a while in my mother’s living room wondering what on earth to do next. When he’d gone I phoned the university I was planning to go to, explained the situation and waited for the administrator to dig out my destiny. When she returned she said just one word. I’ll never forget it as long as I live. “Rejected.” All of my back up universities rejected me too.
I moved on. Of course I did. I got some work experience, filled in another UCAS form, went to university and got my degree. I’ve worked in publishing and in education and now run my own company. My friend moved on too. He also went to university, got his degree and has a great job in finance. But I’ll never forget that day. It was a shock. It knocked my confidence and left a little scar.
If you’re getting your results today, good luck.
And to my Black Thursday friend, thank you for coming back that day. I guess we got there in the end.
On Saturday night we went to bed with the central heating on. Last night it was back to the fan. And today I spent the last couple of hours of work in the back garden, amongst the bedding plants and blackberries.
Autumn is coming. I caught its scent in the grass today and glimpsed its shadow when I woke up. It was fleeting. But it’s coming.
I’ve mentioned before that the mind is a strange place. Take last night. I was sat at home with my husband and we were talking about work. (We weren’t physically at work and so of course we were talking about it.) All of a sudden and out of nowhere a song came into my head. ‘Stop the pigeon, stop the pigeon . . . . ‘ One minute we were talking about iPhone apps and the next, Stop the Flippin’ Pigeon.
I couldn’t even remember where it came from; just the wretched song. We Googled it immediately and there they were – Dastardly and Mutley. All the way from my childhood.
Of course after throwing me a few pleasant memories my mind felt it had to compensate. In the early hours of the morning I dreamed I was being digested by a large snake. Swings and roundabouts.
You can’t quite nail it down but there’s something there. Some ‘thing’. It’s the thing that wakes you in the middle of night, twists and turns your dreams, puts butterflies in your stomach, keeps you staring at your to-do list without completing the tasks.
Holly Golightly called it the Mean Reds. I think she was onto something there.
If I could go back in time I’d go back to this day. The garden was full of yellow flowers. And rhubarb too. The rhubarb went wild that year. We made a den under the slide and stayed there all afternoon. Picnicked on cream crackers and malt bread.
It’s day six of August Break and it looks like it’s going great guns. At the last count 405 people have subscribed and 1,171 pics have been uploaded to the Flickr pool.
For me it’s opened up lots of new possibilities. The photographs have made me look at things in a new way. I look harder at things now. I look up at buildings that I’ve walked past every day for the last few years. I’ve found old signage, crests in stonework, old cobble stones breaking through worn tarmac and disused entrances from a bygone Levenshulme. I also discovered this site when looking into Levenshulme’s past.
The process of taking photos is very much like the process of writing. Only the photo you create is more immediate, unless you do lots of work in processing and editing. For the most part writing occurs later, when you’ve had chance to think and recollect. But either way what you’re left with is the same. An image, rendered in different ways.
Somehow I managed to miss the first one but the Levenshulme Craft Fair is back on 14th August at Levenshulme Library.
Eight local designer makers (four in the morning and four in the afternoon) will be selling their wares and providing craft demos. The library will pick out relevant books that demonstrate each of the craft techniques on display.
Products for sale will include jewellery, cards, paintings, marmalade, soap, bags and clothes.
What: Levenshulme Craft Fair When: August 14th from 10 ’til 1 and 2 ’til 4 Where: Levenshulme Library, Cromwell Grove, Levenshulme, Manchester, M19 3QE More Info:Levenshulme Craft Fair Facebook Page
This is a house in Whitby. I love it there. The winding streets of fishermen’s cottages, the harbour in the evening, the long walk down the beach to Sandsend, the faded glamour of the Metropole. The sea.