More Batteries Required

Some of my more long-suffering friends will be familiar with No Batteries Required. It started off as a joke in a pub.

Wouldn’t it be funny if a bankrupt chicken farmer kidnapped a celebrity chef? No, tell you what, it would be funnier if the chef had gone to school with the Prime Minister and he got kidnapped as well. And he could be at the farm to

No celebrity chefs were harmed in the production of this play.
No celebrity chefs were harmed in the production of this play.

give his old school chum a government job.

So it got wrote, got recorded, go edited and I sent the script off to Eastern Angles. I’d seen one of their productions done on Bentwaters airbase, near my house and I liked the play and the way they fixed on local stories and used local resources to tell them. The play was about an airman, one of the Americans who used to fly out of Bentwaters until it shut 20 years ago, and in parallel it was about the people who used to live here, in the next village over the other side of the base.

It got finished in May last year. We recorded it just before Christmas. I sent the script to Eastern Angles in January. I edited the recording in March.

I didn’t hear any more until this Thursday. Then I got an email.

I like the dialogue and the sheer bravura of the piece.


What does that even mean?

There are some words and phrases I’ve never bothered to find out exactly what they mean until very recently. Obviously it rarely stopped me from using them. Cartesian dualism, for example. Quantitative easing, which must never be

Ladeezangennelmen, swingin' this town tonight, it's Al Dente! Let's have a big hand!
Ladeezangennelmen, swingin’ this town tonight, it’s Al Dente!

confused with the kind of thing the Weimar Republic did, just creating money out of nowhere. Bravura was another one of those words. Like al dente, who I’d always presumed had a dance band in Philadelphia.

So apparently, according to an online dictionary because I’ve been too busy to get out of bed doing this re-write all day (well no, obviously I got out of bed to go to the bathroom and make some kedgeree and end up with faux chainsmoker Writers Fingers but in fact it’s just where I cleared up some spilt turmeric without a cloth, ¬†oh and to get some wine, obviously) bravura means some really nice things according to the Oxford dictionary.

Great technical skill and brilliance shown in a performance or activity.

A display of great daring, except that wouldn’t wholly make sense in context.

Which was nice, as the saying goes, because that was an email from Eastern Angles, asking for a look at a proper stage version of the play that came in on Thursday. Needless to say I’d said there was a proper stage version ready. Needless to say, there wasn’t. So I had to get my finger out this weekend. Even if it was a curious shade of yellow.

Wish me luck.


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