Building The Wall Inside Scoop

by Kayla Cohen

29 May 2018

Every play performed at Park Theatre has a backstage story. They usually begin with Artistic Director Jez Bond lying flat on his back, balancing his laptop on his knees. “It was a scroller...” he recalls reading Building The Wall for the first time - “scroller, as in the digital equivalent of a page-turner,” he qualifies. Jez reads 300 plays each year in the hope of finding something as thrilling as this. It was unfortunate, then, that Park Theatre had already spent its budget for the year and had absolutely no money to spare. No matter! A few conversations and new p…

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Ushering in a new theatre

by Andrew Wilson

15 May 2018

Celebratory cake served on May 5th 2013, the night of Park Theatre’s “soft opening.” (Photos courtesy Jacki Reason).What you ask long-time usher Jacki Reason what she remembers of the early days of Park Theatre, she mentions pulling plastic off the new seats – on opening night.Not the famous opening night of These Shining Lives, the drama that marked the theatre’s formal arrival on the London scene i…

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Building the box

by Andrew Wilson

8 May 2018

Building the Wall began its run on May 2. Over the past months, we checked in with key members of the team that have been putting the production together. Designer Sarah Beaton with her 1/25-scale model of the set of Building the Wall.…

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White Fang blows in on a gale - Hurricane Irma, in fact

by Jethro Compton

2 November 2017

Writer & Director of White Fang, Jethro Compton tells a dramatic true tale from the USA opening                Getting prepared - boats in the theatre's bunker It has been almost two months since Hurricane Irma surged ou…

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Behind the scenes: surviving the “McKellen Marathon”

by By Andrew Wilson

6 September 2017

Park Theatre had two objectives for Ian McKellen’s one-man show, Shakespeare, Tolkien, Others & You which ran for the first week of July.One was to raise £250,000.The other, according to Dorcas Morgan, the theatre’s Development Director, was to make sure McKellen survived the week – “Not just alive but in good spirits!”Of the…

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Blog from the Frog No. 1

by Dawn

30 December 2016

Welcome to the first blog in our Blog from the Frog series. The inhabitants of the Raising Martha frog farm are taking a frogs eye view on all things happening in rehearsals for the World Premiere of our latest hilarious comedy opening in Park200 12 Jan. Click here for more information and to book, and check back again in the New Year for more posts in our Blog from the Frog series.

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Denise, Denise, Denise

by Andrew Wilson

6 December 2016

With the world premiere of Deny, Deny, Deny in November, Denise Silvey has now produced four plays at Park Theatre – three new plays by Jonny Maitland and one re-discovered classic from the 1930s. Of the earlier productions, Dead Sheep has just completed a national tour, An Audience with Jimmy Savile went on to a sold-out run at the Edinburgh Festival, and J.B. Pr…

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Talking (and Signing) about Theatre and Disability

by Andrew Wilson

28 November 2016

It was a day of hope, frustration, and a lot of laughter – much more laughter than I expected to find in an event called "Reshaping our Future: Theatre and Disability."Co-hosted by Graeae Theatre Company, UK Disability History Month (UKDHM), and Park Theatre, the day's aim was to “bring together Artistic Directors, Producers, Managers, Casting Directors, Writers and Actors... to encourage the inclusion of disability in plays and explore best practice to help us work inclusively with the growing pool of disabled and deaf artists, to embrace a truly diverse an…

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History of Park Theatre in (approximately) 10 objects: #2. Seats from the old Palace Theatre Watford

by Andrew Wilson

25 September 2016

 Fancy connecting with over a century of British stage and television history? Channelling people connected with everything from pantomimes to House of Cards? Just walk up the main staircase to the landing below the Morris Space and sit down on one of numbered fold-down seats there.The seats are from the Watford Palace Theatre, which opened in December 1908 and is now a Grad…

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Snakes in Park 200 (!)

by Andrew Wilson

15 March 2016

Snakes have a gestation period of about three months.Don’t Sleep There Are Snakes, which opens in Park 200 on 23 March, has had a gestation period of eight years.It was November 2008. Dudley Hinton was listening to a Radio 4 interview with Dan Everett. A linguistics professor and former missionary, Everett is one of the few (about six) outsiders fluent in the langu

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History of Park Theatre in (approximately) 10 Objects: #1 Plaque from a disappeared Victorian theatre

by Andrew Wilson

Monday, 18 January, 2016

At the bottom of the lobby stairwell, in one of Park patrons’ favourite nooks for chatting and eating, can be found a piece of London’s theatrical history: a plaque bearing the traditional masks of Comedy and Tragedy.The plaque was part of the decorative plasterwork in the old Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith. (For a detaile

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The Knight From Nowhere/The Bells

by Andrew Shepherd

Tuesday, 15 December, 2015

Every time we come to play in Park Theatre we try to set a challenge for ourselves in Park 90. For Much Ado it was making it smell like Christmas and a 10 foot tree. For Hamlet it was a disappearing ghost. This year we are recreating the most famous melodrama in Victorian Theatre originally staged for around a capacity of 2000 in a studio space for 90...and it has not been without its challenges and detractors. We are in our final week mounti…

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Starstruck in Stokey: Park Gala 2015

by Andrew Wilson

Thursday, 12 November, 2015

All photos by Darren Bell except where indicated.Spotted in the crowd... “Omigod, isn’t that...?” gasps Rose, my fellow Park Friend, clutching my hand as she searches for the name. “Over there, by the door. In the velvet dinner jacket!”&ldqu…

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Bachs and Coxes: Musical history comes alive

by Andrew Wilson

Monday, 22 June, 2015

Magical things can happen in the Morris Space, on the top floor of Park Theatre. Last Thursday two generations of Coxes played two generations of Bachs when The Score, a new play by Oliver Cotton received its first reading by a full cast, with live keyboard accompaniment.Jez Bond and Brian CoxThe Score deals with a historical event: a visit in 174…

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A chat with Jonathan Maitland, author of Dead Sheep

by Andrew Wilson

Tuesday, 31 March, 2015

  It was Denis Healey, then-Chancellor of the Exchequer, who famously said in 1978 that being attacked by Geoffrey Howe in Parliament was “like being savaged by a dead sheep.” Jonathan Maitland has a rather more affectionate metaphor for describing Howe’s relationship with his wife, the formidabl…

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Full house!

by Andrew Wilson

Friday, 13 March, 2015

                    It’s a Friday evening, and Marketing Manager Patrick Kennedy – on duty in the Park’s improvised box office tucked behind the café bar –…

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Waat a week!

by Sophie Gill (Assistant Director)

Friday, 21 November, 2014

It's been an action packed week here in Nowen! On Monday, Claire from RC Annie (@rcannie) joined us to teach some of the cast how to fight safely on stage. She got them to pretend to be proud monkeys riding on fat pigs, apparently this helps to get into the correct fighting stance! It was fascinating to see the actors learning different types of stance, and tricks for falling over without hurting themselves. Thanks to a lot of hard work from the stage management team, this was also the first day we had most of the set and props in the rehearsal room - a great start to t…

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Welcome to Waa

by Tamar Saphra (Assistant Director)

Friday, 14 November, 2014

It’s ten days into our journey into the land of Waa, and expectedly there’s that ‘I can’t quite believe it's the end of the second week of rehearsals’ feeling resounding amongst the Jack and the Beanstalk cast and crew. To be honest, the sheer amount of different accents flying about in the room is enough to cause anyone to get a little disconnected from time and space, no matter what religion you are…(don’t worry – that’ll make more sense when you come and see the show).First week of rehearsals was …

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Intern

by Jessica Hodgson

Wednesday, 10 September, 2014

 Personally I’ve always loved theatre. Whether going to see shows with friends and family or participating in performances myself throughout my school years, it has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember, but I have never before had the opportunity to experience what makes it all work. Until now…Although my time so far as part of the Park Theatre family has been short, the small but extremely dedicated team has…

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HELLO FROM FRONT OF HOUSE

by Tom Kingdon

Friday, 6 December, 2013

Hello. So this is my first ever blog, I know next I will be telling you that I have never tweeted. So I am Tom the Front of House/Box Office Manager at Park Theatre. I am the one usally seen lurking on the balchony watching patrons into the theatres (its not as creepy as it sounds. Honest).It has been a busy couple of weeks for the Front of House team. We have had the plesure of having the Reduced Shakespeare Company in P200 and the company of Much Ado About Nothing in P90. Both shows are doing really well and have recived amazing feedback from the press and audiences.Next wee…

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SHAKESPEARE, INTERNS, DANCING AND PRE-CHRISTMAS FROLICKS

by Melli Bond

Friday, 29 November, 2013

This week we have 2 fantastic shows on and I recently did a podcast with the Reduced Shakespeare Company. I was incredibly proud to talk about our ethos as a company and how far we've come from getting this building to now being a living breathing theatre. I've been blessed with the opportunity of having an intern this week as part of a joint internship with the RSC and our very delightful intern Cheyenne has already proven to be a super help to me.  She lovingly makes sure I eat - which believe me sounds crazy but I do actually have to be told to eat food! It's that crazy …

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´IS IT FUNNY?´

by Jez Bond

Friday, 22 November, 2013

As the sun set on the Cartmel campsite, three words were shared by two men in a static caravan: "Is it funny?" It was September and the final writing session before a workshop of our script with professional actors. Over the past year my writing partner, Mark Cameron, and I had grabbed a week here, a weekend there and the odd evening (usually very odd) in order to complete the script for Park Theatre's first ever pantomime. We set the bar high, maintaining some of the traditional elements of panto whilst hugely challenging ourselves in other areas. We set ru…

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MY FIRST BLOG

by JJ Almond

Friday, 15 November, 2013

Well this is my first Blog, so I am JJ, I am the interim Executive Director. Our Trustees (Management Committee) are currently in the process of recruiting a permanent Executive Producer to replace this role. My role is to oversee the organisation with Jez, Melli and Dorcas. The main focus is the money and how we use it as well as the nuts and bolts of how all the departments work. Last night was the Press Night for The Door, following hot on the tails of Press Night for The Dead Wait - two fabulous shows that everyone should see! Press nights are always fun, w…

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PARK THEATRE BLOG

by Dorcas Morgan

Friday, 8 November, 2013

Hello. We’ve all agreed it’s time we brought back the Park Theatre blog so here it is. I’ve been reading back through the archive and it’s been great to follow the journey of Park Theatre from the early days of building speak about ‘structural steel’, ‘disproportionate collapse’ and’ the benefits of gas combi boilers’, right through to the excitement of announcing the opening season. Since then, it’s been a bit quiet on the blog front, but here we are, back in action, to bring you the backstage banter and front of house gossi…

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OUR GRAND OPENING SEASON ANNOUNCED

by Melli Bond

Wednesday, 20 March, 2013

Today's launch has stirred the team into a frenzy chills and excitement. After 3 and 1/2 years of hard work we are finally at the day we can announce our opening season. Yay! We are so proud too - we've been working really hard to make this happen. You will see our personality coming through in our choices of productions. It's all about passion, issues, intimacy, love  and a bunch of good old fashioned laughter to round it off. We've always said we want to make you laugh and make you cry - and hopefully you will all do that - this season an…

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“Helen of Troy wouldn’t have had a Brazilian” – A night with Park Theatre

by brackets digital

Monday, 31 December, 2012

…Or 'Key-Change as Comedy Licence'   A Guest Blog by Vicky Johnson Moving to Finsbury Park in the wet and windy days of October, the first thing I did to acclimatise was hit Google. Because like everyone under 40, I’m tech-dependent and Google is my friend. There wasn’t a lot happening in the area, so it seemed – a Bermuda Triangle of culture right in the middle of North London. And then, bang! Is that Ian McKellen? Promoting a theatre? …

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LOVE AND LIGHT FOR THE HOLIDAYS

by Melli Bond

Monday, 24 December, 2012

It's not yet down tools for key staff at Park Theatre. We still have a few hours before taking a much needed break. I wanted to say thank you to everyone who came to our wonderful DIckens evening on Dec 21st at The Crypt. We all had such a wonderful time and are so very grateful to the supporters who came out and those of you who have supported us in so many different ways. Our special guest Adam Long did a beautiful reading of A Christmas Carol - complete with a Tiny Tim song - it really made the evening so special.  With 2013 just around the corner we can really fee…

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MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM YOUR WRITER IN RESIDENCE

by brackets digital

Friday, 21 December, 2012

Just pausing long enough in my packing (I'm heading up north for a week) to sincerely wish all followers of this blog a wonderful festive season.  And to all attending the Dickens night tonight, have a magical evening - I'll be with you in (Christmas) spirit.  Have a restful break everyone, and I'll see you on the other side.

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THE LACK OF OFFICE PARTY

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 18 December, 2012

With our over addiction to work we have pretty much forgotten to hold our office party. Well of course we also don't really have a physical office yet - it's ever changing and anyway office is a state of mind in our world. Nevertheless I managed to get some of the team together this Tuesday evening for some much needed Mexican and Margaritas. We can't help ourselves but chat about work. We tried talk…

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SARAH'S CHRISTMAS GIFT GUIDE

by brackets digital

Friday, 14 December, 2012

I have a horror of stuff. I'm sure it's partly because I'm a naturally untidy person who hates clutter.  Not an easy combination - and the more stuff I have, the harder it gets.  I'm not keen on shops, conspicuous consumption makes me queasy, and I worry a bit about the planet.  That's why an article in the Guardian this week called "On the 12th day of Christmas ... your gift will just be junk" struck a chord. …

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THE BROCK RETURNS...

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 13 December, 2012

Some months ago the 'Brock' appeared onsite to aid demolition - but at the beginning of this week its power was unleashed again with even greater consequences. This time its task was to remove the thick reinfornced concrete slab floor between lower and upper ground levels. It took a matter of three days - albeit rather noisy ones - and finally after months of wondering what the true height in Park200 would feel like, we were given the opportunity to stand in the stalls-to-be and look up at the ceiling to experience it. It was truly a landmark and as we fast approach Christmas it sig…

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WINNERS AND LOSERS

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 12 December, 2012

As ABBA has been telling us repeatedly since 1980, the winner, when all is said and done, takes it all.  We can surmise that it doesn’t matter what is taken, provided there’s nothing left for the person who hasn’t won.  This can be a hard slice of cake to swallow, which is why Benny and Björn's consoling lyrics and open vowels are as important today as they were back when Thai-dye short sleeved shirts were the done thing to we…

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CHILD'S PLAY

by brackets digital

Friday, 7 December, 2012

It's that time of year again, and a lot of my time this week has been spent watching children perform in carol concerts and Christmas shows.  These performances vary in quality from the endearingly shambolic to the shockingly professional, but it seems there's always something that brings me up short.  This year I listened to primary school children reading their own accounts of the nativity, and was struck by the way the originality and subjectiveness of their take on a well-worn tale, combined with the unselfconscious freshness of their language, made me - a fairly ja…

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PUZZLED

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 6 December, 2012

No time to blog - hardly time to eat - just pushing through to get the season finalised - much harder than I thought - the giant jigsaw puzzle of it all! Now, hold on, I thought I had it but... where does this piece go?

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TWO WEEKS TIL DICKENS DEC 21ST

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 4 December, 2012

I know I mentioned this before in a blog but I'm just so darned excited about it! With only two weeks to go I encourage all you wine lovers and Dickens fans to make sure and book your tickets for our wonderful event! I would hate for people to miss out on the fun! It starts with a wine tasting with lush wine provided by Enologia and followed by dinner with a very special Dickens Family tradition. I can't wait! I'm trying to decide what dress to wear. Come either black tie or Dickensian - what will you choose? Or maybe do a mix of both - we are theatricals so really anything g…

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EVERY LITTLE HELPS

by brackets digital

Monday, 3 December, 2012

We’re still hugely focused on fundraising in the lead up to the opening of Park and beyond. As a charity there is, and always will be, fundraising to be done. It’s what will sustain our work and your enjoyment of what we deliver. Our newest strategy is charity collection containers. Many charities use them and that is because every little helps and if you see ‘us’ while you’re out and about at your local shops or cafes, it’s a little reminder of what will be and continue to be a world class theatre from 2013 - with your help. From…

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INTOXICATED

by brackets digital

Friday, 30 November, 2012

This week I received an email from Creative Director Melli describing how a Transmission workshop session on acting drunk had taken her back to when we first met in 2001.  Melli and I played two very different sisters in a US play called Independence and bonded irrevocably through our increasingly outrageous backstage warm-ups for a scene where Melli's delinquent character got her innocent older sibling inebriated. This was also the week when Melli and I finally got together for a social (yes, non-work!) evening …

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STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 29 November, 2012

The extension to our back of house staircase just went in today - what a result! Okay it's not quite as magnificent as the one in the picture (obviously that's the one leading to the actors' dressing rooms) but hey, it serves its purpose! For a few months now the upper office had been built but there was no way to access it. It's exciting to be able to get up there now: to measure up for a sofa, table, shelving etc. Our home away from home! I wo…

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THINGS ARE GOING WELL

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 28 November, 2012

Should we be worried?  We're optimists, positive thinkers, bad company at a quiet breakfast table.  The chances are we'll always tell you how well things are going even when the roof has collapsed and the façade has fallen off (neither of these things have happened).  But it's surely a worrying sign when even Gary, our esteemed construction manager, says things are going very well.   If you've been to the site in the last week then you might have felt the difference as well as seen it.  Park 200 is just about to disappear from si…

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HOLIDAY SEASON IS COMING....

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 27 November, 2012

That's right it's creeping up on us that festive time of year where we are celebrating traditions old and new. I hope some of you fantastic people out there would like to come and join us to celebrate a wonderful Dickens Family Tradition this holiday season. We are having a reading from A CHRISTMAS CAROL - in honour of the bicentenary of Charles Dickens' birth. It's going to be a wonderful evening and with the weather all cold and windy outside it makes it so much fun to be inside all warm with beautiful candles, divine wine and food glorious food! As a Park Theatre blog …

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NEW YORK HERE YOU COME

by brackets digital

Friday, 23 November, 2012

No playwriting updates this week as I have something very nearly as exciting as my latest draft for you: a New York Experience for Two* worth over £10,000…. Here are the details: - American Airlines Business Class Flights to New York and three night stay at boutique hotel The Standard in Manhattan (with an option to extend the number of nights) - Shopping spree - receive a suit by designer Duncan Quinn before enjoying lunch with him at the legendary Balthazar restaurant. - Now that you're s…

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PERCEPTIONS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 22 November, 2012

Sometimes things move too fast, you need them to slow down so you can catch up, be ready in time. Sometimes so slow that you wish you could grab the reins and turn a trot into a canter. Inevitably the things that seem, in the moment, to move at a frustrating pace are at the exact speed necessary for our journey - but life is a cruel teacher; it gives the exam first and then the lesson. So these statements can only be understood with the benefit of hindsight. Theatre challenges perceptions, buil…

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THE HYPOTHETICAL AUDIENCE

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 21 November, 2012

One of the best things about working at Park Theatre is the range of activities involved in the standard working day.  That's partly because building a theatre and programming the work that will bring it to life is a perilous juggling act.  And it's partly because we're a very small team trying to cope with a huge variety of tasks, many of which are completely new to us. 'If you build it they will come' is a mantra that we throw around every now and again, but the reality is slightly more complicated than that.  It takes time and effort to at…

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FLOOR OUT

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 20 November, 2012

Major construction going on all today and this week. The floor is finally coming out in Park 200 getting ready to create that beautiful open space where we can look from the circle down into the stalls. It's pretty loud noisy and dusty. Makes me think of playing in a sandbox to the extreme! It's gotta be fun tearing stuff down right? I'm thinking that's one of the best kicks about being in the building trade - it's not so much the building up as the tearing down which is pretty fun!   

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ENDINGS

by brackets digital

Monday, 19 November, 2012

How do you bring a play to an end? At Park we’re always talking about beginnings, what is evolving and how it will grow. But within this growth, this building and organisation, performances and shows will be housed and they need endings. And, the way a show ends is so crucial to how the audience can feel about the piece. I’m sure most people reading this blog have seen a show that you really hope will end, think will never end, think it has ended and begin to clap – oh, the awkwardness (and usually pain) when it continues for another half …

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UNTITLED

by brackets digital

Friday, 16 November, 2012

Just a quick line from me today as I'm dotting the i's and crossing the t's on the latest draft of the N4 Stories play I am writing for Park.  I've been writing so solidly this week that the RSI in my right hand has returned.  Still, later today the script will be pinging its way into Jez's inbox.  All it needs now is a title ...

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WHAT TO CHOOSE?

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 13 November, 2012

So many choices! What to choose? Children Shows, Happy plays - stories that make you escape Horror Shows, Scary Plays - stories of murder and rape Pieces from days of old to stories that help you never grow old All in a days work at the Park We'll have them all from light to dark

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N4 STORIES, TWO YEARS ON

by brackets digital

Friday, 9 November, 2012

It's been a week of anniversary blog posts: two years of Transmission and of course a year of Charlie Ward.  Which made me realise that it's also two years since N4 Stories kicked off in the chilly school hall of Pooles Park Primary, where Melli and I, aided by Nouska, assembled a team of brave (if baffled) actors and exhorted them to go forth and find stories.  And find stories they did.  And the st…

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SOMEONE ELSE'S WEEKEND

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 8 November, 2012

I love the weekends. Well, I don't have a "week end" per se (I refer to my blog of two years ago!) but I'm beginning to love other people's. You see, given that I receive in excess of a hundred emails on a weekday, Saturdays and Sundays are a much needed opportunity to catch up with the backlog. There's nothing more frustrating than when on, say, a Tuesday afternoon I deal with three important emails while twelve new ones (all equally demanding my attention) come through (I refer again to an

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THE SECOND TERM

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 7 November, 2012

Exactly one year ago today, fresh faced and bushy tailed, I arrived in the Park Theatre development office in Greswell Street to begin my first day as part of the Park Theatre family.  At that time the first steel joists hadn't arrived on site, the construction office had a 'WE LOVE SUPERYACHTS' sticker on the door, and we were around £400,000 short of an Education Floor.   As far as I'm aware we are still pro superyachts, but the sticker has long since disappeared into the rubble, to be replaced by an outreach space that we hope will outlive al…

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HAPPY 2ND ANNIVERSARY TRANSMISSION

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 6 November, 2012

It's been 2 years now that Transmission is up and running and it's high time we came out of the lime light and said hello! Transmission is a weekly workshop co-founded by myself and fellow actress/singer/producer/director Ursula Campbell. We have designed it for the working actor who likes to keep in touch with established and emerging theatre makers in order to keep their skills sharp for the next job or…

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WINDOW BOX THEATRE

by brackets digital

Monday, 5 November, 2012

Whilst no one can deny that Jez looks great inside our window we would like to see something else in there before it gets full of people enjoying drinks and chatting.  This window is one of my favourite parts of the building. It’s original from a theatre design perspective and gives a feeling of space and openness once you’re on the bar/café floor. Every time I stand inside it  I get a little tingle of excitement. Standing in mid-air over the pavement I end up smiling at people walking by beneath who look up a bit surprised. But we can&r…

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FAMILY PRIDE

by brackets digital

Friday, 2 November, 2012

In the Park family, we don't believe in false modesty.  We know we're working with London's finest.  That said, every now and again it's nice when someone else notices this fact. That's why this week we're celebrating the well-deserved presence on the Evening Standard Theatre Awards longlist of not one but two Park family members: Ambassador Hattie Morahan (pictured above) for Best Actress, and Trustee Danielle Tar…

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Pigeon Holes

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 1 November, 2012

In the midst of programming decisions we start to question every choice: - Is everything you've worked so hard to achieve judged purely on the basis of the first show. - What does the choice of this show say about you? (The first show can only be one genre - yet we have a broad artistic policy) - Or, are people less quick to judge than we might imagine? - Do we simply need to consider a season o…

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LIKE US

by brackets digital

Monday, 29 October, 2012

In the glowing aftermath of our successful Gala a couple of weeks ago there’s been no pause or break from the momentum driving us closer to the opening. Whilst celebrating the generosity of all our supporters in reaching the target needed to complete building the Education Floor there is still plenty to do, move on with and yes, still more fundraising.  Check out our updated website for more information: https://www.parktheatre.co.uk/donate The big news of the day, to push this on further, is that we’ve launched a new Facebook Page. You may already …

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AN INCREDIBLE NIGHT

by brackets digital

Monday, 22 October, 2012

Superlatives escape me in attempting to describe with accuracy, just how glamorous the Park Theatre gala was on Friday night. Therefore, I shall name drop - use lots of links to press articles published today and finish off with an Oscar - style list of thank you’s. Im in PR - what can I say... Incredible host: Ian McKellen, tick. London’s best auctioneer: Jeffery Archer (as quoted in

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SOUNDSCAPES

by brackets digital

Monday, 1 October, 2012

I think I’ve always been very aware of sound, most likely from growing up in a very musical household. I find it easier to concentrate with music playing in the background. I can feel too isolated and alone if I don’t have a radio or something going into my ears and I’m a light sleeper so I wake up at the slightest noise. But I don’t just mean music; I mean the mixture of all types of sounds melded together.  I would say there is good noise and bad noise. The bad is repetitive, intrusive and boring. The right kind of noise is the busy sound of people chatting…

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CASTING

by brackets digital

Friday, 28 September, 2012

Last week I wrote about what a strain it can be to hear certain characters' voices, and to see them in three dimensions.  (Other characters, it must be said, are so autonomous and assertive that they happily do your work for you.)  In last week's case, it was in the end an actor who unknowingly helped me on my way to hauling that particular slippery character off the page and onto his feet. Which brings me agreeably to one of my tasks this week: casting.  The final step in making a chara…

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The Philosophy, History and Sociology of Flying in the 21st Century (abridged)

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 27 September, 2012

As I sit here on the balcony of a beautiful penthouse in the Algarve, from where Mark Cameron and I are penning Park Theatre's first ever Christmas show, I feel incredibly privileged. The work is hard, but the warm weather and comfortable surroundings make for an incredibly pleasant change of scenery - and the occasional game of tennis and trip to the spa certainly doesn't hinder matters. Best of all I am being treated to both flights and…

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HAPPY YOM KIPPUR

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 25 September, 2012

I  don't know if you can say "Happy" Yom Kippur but I would like to extend an acknowledgement to all who celebrate this lovely holiday and tradition. I was speaking to one of my best friends who told me it's about atonement and how Yom Kippur comes after the Jewish New Year. It sounds to me the perfect time to reflect on one's life and way forward just after celebrating a new year. Starting fresh and reflecting on your life I think is hugely important for anyone of any faith. So for all of you recognising Yom Kippur whether it is your faith or not I wish you al…

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THE UNBUILT

by brackets digital

Monday, 24 September, 2012

The ‘Unbuilt’ was the affectionate term my ex-boyfriend used to use for Park Theatre when distinguishing it from The Old Vic (my other place of work at the time), which was known as, ‘The Built.’  My BF was a lot younger (lol), not in the arts and not familiar with London. So, according to him, the best way to distinguish Park Theatre from The Old Vic was the fact that it was already built. Apart from the obvious differences between size, scale and the small matter of a couple of centuries, there are ways in which we very much hope to resemble The …

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THE EXTRA MILE

by brackets digital

Saturday, 22 September, 2012

We love it when our supporters go the extra mile, and we had an extreme case of that today when Brigitte flew in from Germany to take a tour of the site!

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HEARING VOICES

by brackets digital

Friday, 21 September, 2012

The other day, a well-known actress said to me that the last time she attempted to write a script, she felt like the characters were about two inches high, standing there on the page, looking up at her pleadingly and making desperate hand gestures at their mouths as if to say, 'Give us something to say!  Let us speak!'. She was powerless to help them. With me, lately, it's been a somewhat different problem.  At least my friend's characters popped up in 3D; one of mine has been refusing to even stir himself that far.  All I could do was…

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LIGHTING THE SECOND FLOOR

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 20 September, 2012

We've had so many discussions about the lighting for the education-studio-cum-rehearsal-room on second floor level. The difficulty is that we want it to be both a rehearsal space (for rehearsals, workshops and classes) and a performance space (for readings and rehearsed readings). I want to keep any lighting, tracks and other gubbins off the ceiling - as I'm concerned about ceiling height: not that it's uber-tight but it's not vast either and I alwa…

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TENNIS

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 19 September, 2012

I had been working at Park Theatre for a few months before I learned what was really going on.  Jez leaned in - a nervous moment - and whispered to me, ‘can I tell you a secret?’  I told him he could, and promised that I’d never put it on a blog or anything.  ‘The thing is’, he said, ‘I’m really only in it for the tennis.’  I nodded; yes of course.  ‘It dawned on me that in most jobs it’s hard to find time to work on your backhand.  And so I thought: why don’t I build a theatre, and…

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A LITTLE LESS CONVERSATION A LITTLE MORE ACTION PLEASE

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 18 September, 2012

Who doesn't like Elvis? I have been on what feels like a mission for some action - waaaaa- not that kind of action- naughty!  No I'm looking for the action in the drama. The piece that moves, that shakes and yes the play that makes you scream! I'm off again tonight - my usual nightly routine in check: Walk Hazel - check, Feed Hazel - check, send that last email - check - Location prepped - check. And I'm off. So keep these great invites coming in please people - and when you are thinking about your next production try to think about Elvis - sometimes too many words c…

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MILESTONES

by brackets digital

Friday, 14 September, 2012

Yesterday was my birthday and (as Jez mentioned in last night's blog) it also happened to be the day of the Park family dinner at the theatre's local restaurant, Season Kitchen. Milestones like this always prompt us (for good or ill) to project ourselves backwards and forwards in time.  Melli (Creative Director) and I will always remember the first time we celebrated my birthday together, during the run of a show called Independence back i…

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PHASE ONE COMPLETE!

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 13 September, 2012

No doubt those of you who follow us on Twitter will have seen the barrage of tweets and pics this evening from Season Kitchen - where we enjoyed a delicious meal - and then from back at the penthouse on Clifton Terrace for more drinks and an inspired photoshoot courtesy of our very own Charlie Ward. It was an important time for the team - a milestone in the journey of Park Theatre; phase 1 (the completion of the residential apartments) was over and phase 2 about to begin. So with champagne up on the roof terrace overlooking the Shard and St Paul's cathedral, the entire team - Amy, Ch…

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THE PRE-AUCTION AUCTION

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 12 September, 2012

As you probably know, we have an extremely exciting auction lined up for our gala, to be hosted by Lord Archer.  Just to get you in the mood, we'll be doing a small pre-auction auction, of one very special lot that can only happen on one evening.  It's worth looking out for over the coming days, but in the meantime I can give you this little teaser: it involves a personal tour around one of the most interesting buildings in the world, with one of the greatest actors as your guide...

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ORCHIDS ROSES LILACS

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 11 September, 2012

I was thinking about the natural light again in the building. I've always wanted to include something of outside on the inside - you have to find flowers in the Park. The question will be which flowers grow well indoors? I personally grow orchids in my house. They all have ladies names and they are all in full bloom at the moment. Orchids love light. They don't really need a lot of water - they like a nice shower every now and then but not to sit in water. My orchids have such various personalities too. I would like to know what flowers you'd like to see in the Park? 

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PARTIES

by brackets digital

Monday, 10 September, 2012

Park Parties are a particularly good breed of party. Not only can we style it out on a roofless, windowless building site in the depths of Winter in our building-site chic attire (short skirts, woolly tops and steel-toe capped boots); we also have an amazing amount of energy for them allowing us to keep going even after a long day.  A lot of this comes from the adrenaline of just talking to people about Park Theatre, and our genuine passion of being involved. Parties are essential to our fundraising but also to our bonding as a family and a way of getting to know our supp…

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WRITING IS REWRITING

by brackets digital

Friday, 7 September, 2012

All summer I've been working on the rewrite for my (temporarily title-less) Park play, sometimes in my head, sometimes on paper or on the screen.  But now that the new term is under way I've got my head down, tapping away at the new draft in earnest. I tend to approach rewrites in one of two ways, depending on what stage I'm at.  Towards the end of the process, I'll just open up the previous draft and, with notes from myself and others by my side, go through scene by scene, cutting an…

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PETITION FOR SIGNAGE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 6 September, 2012

It's been over a year - and still no useful response from Transport for London. What a shame! Short blog today: it's all here https://www.parktheatre.co.uk/latest-news/petition Please sign up!

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COMPLETION OF FLATS

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 5 September, 2012

The flats are nearing completion, and every time I take a look they become more alluring.  I had a few minutes to spare early on Saturday morning, and so went up onto the balcony of the penthouse flat to have cup of coffee.  The morning sun was streaming in through the floor-to-ceiling windows, making it the perfect place to relax and watch the world go by.  Even better, when you close the triple-glazed doors, the entire flat is silent.  I'm already jealous of the lucky people who get to live there...

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SEPTEMBER BIRTHDAYS

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 4 September, 2012

"Looks like we're gonna have another big crowd" Grandma would say. My grandma used to have a really big picnic every year in September. We have a crazy number of family members born in September and so we would all gather under the big tree for a wonderful feast. She made the most amazing variety of food and it was delicious. Fried chicken was always a favourite as well as the deviled eggs and ambrosia salad! Yes real American cooking all way! We played games under the tree to win prizes- and everyone loved the numbers game. You pick a number out of the hat and if it's …

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QUESTIONNING

by brackets digital

Monday, 3 September, 2012

I went to see a play tonight. I’d heard that it was amazing. Everyone had already been or wanted to go. Other than that I didn’t know much about it except it was about a community dealing with something; a sensitive subject. I was liking it, getting into it, but half way through the first act I start getting a niggling feeling. I started to question. Question whether I thought it was funny - should I laugh? Why were some of the audience laughing? Question if this was trivialising or undermining an actual occurrence and the real people involved with it? Was that rig…

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WHO IS YOUR COMMUNITY?

by brackets digital

Monday, 27 August, 2012

Bank holiday weekends are lush. A time to meet up with friends in your favorite places, while away some hours, go festival-ling, carnival-ling, wandering and sitting. I spent the weekend seeing some of my favourite people in my favourite local places and talking, amongst other things how they just need to walk past Wells Terrace and get a look at Park. I loved seeing these people in my local pubs but was craving for Park’s café and bar to be open. A good friend of mine from Italy asked me what she should do in London on Saturday night; what places could I recommen…

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MAUREEN CONTINUED - OR NOT.....

by brackets digital

Monday, 20 August, 2012

  I haven’t managed to write a regular Monday blog for a while. This was partly because I’d been finishing a course and also because Maureen had to go to intensive care. (Check blog dated 25th June 2012 for reference and backstory). This was a sad and serious time, not least because it happened the night before a very busy week for me, her and Park. There were lots of tours to coordinate and confirm with people who had already been patiently waiting, and we had our ‘Take to the Streets’ campaign to organise for that weekend.   …

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TAKE TO THE STREETS

by brackets digital

Monday, 30 July, 2012

Last week we had a very productive weekend at Park. In our plan to distribute the last development packs to the public, we arranged two afternoons for which we needed all hands on deck. On Saturday we stuffed (some 4000)  envelopes and on Sunday we walked up and down streets and stairs to front doors in Muswell Hill to deliver the packs. These packs aim to spread the word (about Park) and inform people of how they can help raise funds to complete the Education Floor. The help we received was so appreciated; especially for forfeiting the lovely weather on Saturday to form …

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MAUREEN – IN A WORLD OF WHIRR...

by brackets digital

Monday, 25 June, 2012

Park will be a technologically innovative theatre. I am not one of the most technologically savvy people on the planet. I’m excited by I.T prospects and innovation but I don’t really understand these things well, and I do like my notebook and pen. And, I take my time joining 21st century developments. I also own a PC. This is almost an unforgivable sin at Park.  I feel I’m an important representative of a sector of society that, within our equality policies,  Park does recognise and value. Having said that, my old PC has been fondly (t…

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FAMILIES

by brackets digital

Monday, 18 June, 2012

The last few months I’ve thought a lot about my family. This has much to do with the fact I’ve had few big changes in my life and they’ve been a fountain of support and advice. I’ve also thought about how their lives change and I see how it affects them, and in turn the affect it has on me. We are related so, certain life events become interrelated. Your family, in the traditional meaning, are partly what makes you who you are, whether you know them or not (I’m talking DNA) but they can be the people you surround yourself with and they in…

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RAINING DOWN

by brackets digital

Monday, 11 June, 2012

Everyone at Park is juggling a number of different projects and jobs all the time. I feel that we mention this fair a bit, but it does have a massive impact. There is a constant flow of things to do, people to meet, strategies to think about. I personally have at least 4 'to do' lists going on at any one time.  Hence, tonight is my shortest blog ever. I have an exam at the end of the week so that gets to the top of all the lists. Having said that, we, including some of our wonderful Helpers will be at Park tomorrow (weather permitting!) with an informatio…

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HELPING OUT

by brackets digital

Monday, 4 June, 2012

Last week we had another couple of Helpers Days. This is when people who have kindly said they will donate their time for any events or PR activities we arrange can come and get stuck in. It’s nice to be able to put faces to names as so much of our communication with people is via email at the moment, and it gets us in a room with some of the many enthusiastic people that we are in touch with. Who doesn’t like sitting and having a natter about theatre, London and life? At the moment we’re very much focused on fundraising (we still need to secure the …

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BEHIND

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 31 May, 2012

So behind I've had to backdate this blog. Sorry to those avid followers who wondered what happened to Jez! It's been a hectic week and 'today' (the day this blog was supposed to be written) we had a fundraising dinner and auction - in aid of us and another charity 'Care for Casulaties'. The final figures aren't in yet but we reckon that we've made somwhere between £6,000 and £10,000 - not bad at all! Thanks to all those involved and to our wonderful Ambassador Tamzin Outhwaite for hosting the evening.

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UPDATE

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 30 May, 2012

I hope you won't notice any disruption, but over the next few days I'm going to be updating the backlog on this blog, moving the old posts from one server onto the other.  If there's a global technology meltdown this week, then I'm probably responsible.  On the plus side, it means that we will have every Park Theatre blog post in one place.

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NOT YET BUT SOON

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 29 May, 2012

We are getting there - not yet but soon. Steels, glass, materials all arriving into the building - that is opening, not yet but soon. We have proposals flying in - I'd love to meet with you all - not yet, but soon. A proper office to work out of - not yet but soon! Another tour for industry professionals - not yet, but soon. No one really likes to wait, but sometimes it is the waiting that makes the enjoyment just so delightfully good. The anticipation of waiting for it all - you almost break out into a sweat!  I said to Amy "I feel awful having to say to everyone yes I wan…

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TRAVELLING

by brackets digital

Monday, 28 May, 2012

My brothers did a 30 hour walk for charity over the weekend. Whilst I knew in my head this was impressive, it wasn’t until I went to bed on Saturday, knowing they and their small team would be walking through the night, that the commitment required for this challenge hit me. Different to a marathon, where you get to  your mark in a few hours, this was about keeping going, through light and dark with aching legs and blisters. I wondered what it felt like to do that and imagined it might be quite exhilarating to have that unique journey; with the camaraderie to keep each other g…

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BIG NIGHT

by brackets digital

Friday, 25 May, 2012

Last night, for the first time, the staff, trustees and ambassadors of The Park assembled in the same place at the same time.  It may seem odd that we have never all been in the same room before - but as the theatre itself is still a building site and we are all working away towards the same end in separate places, meeting only in small groups and teams, there has never been an opportunity. So yesterday at the Groucho Club, this state of affairs was put well and truly right.  Inevitably, ideas were thrown around; working relationships sparked or cemented; plans were …

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PARTY TIME

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 24 May, 2012

It's not often that the majority of the team can convene in the same room at the same time - but this evening at The Groucho Club we had an almost 90% turnout of staff, trustees, ambassadors and other key Park players. It was a chance for many of the team to meet others for the first time - and an opportunity for us to reward the hard work done by the volunteers on board. As we sat in the dining room at Groucho new friendships were forged and exciting ideas discussed. Towards the end of the meal a cake was brought out and the room (including - on other tables - Ronnie Wood and R…

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DIRECTORS

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 23 May, 2012

I had a really enjoyable tour today with the directing students at Mountview, where this time last year I was worrying about what 2012 would hold.  It was great to meet the new directors, who are about to present a season of work at the Cockpit Theatre before finishing the MA and stepping out into the industry.  One of the things I love about my job is that no two tours are ever the same, and it's particularly exciting to show the site to a group whose careers will be beginning at the same time as our doors open.  I wonder what work we will see from the faces around th…

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NY & MY LOCAL NEIGHBOURHOOD

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 22 May, 2012

Having just come back from NY I'm faced with the most amazing London weather, which I seemed to have brought back with me from New York. I stayed in the Lower East Side at my lovely friends place and I loved it. The great thing about New York is the neighbourhood feeling. So many neighbourhoods really have a sense of pride in their area. I feel like this is exactly what we are getting in Finsbury Park and can't wait for our doors to open. Having people of the neighborhood pop in for a morning coffee, a last drink and a chat at the bar in the evening, seeing those familiar faces e…

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WEBSITES SAYING HELLO

by brackets digital

Monday, 21 May, 2012

As I go through our epic contacts database one of the things I do is check some missing or incorrect information, which involves going to lots of peoples’ websites. This is quite a distracting task because it’s interesting seeing what creative companies are out there and the massive diversity in style and content of websites.  Websites are so valuable to the identity you’re trying to present and the audience you’re hoping to reach and preserve contact with. Like a book cover, or that 2 seconds when you first meet with someone,  a judgement is formed and …

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FAST AND SLOW

by brackets digital

Friday, 18 May, 2012

This week has been one of promising new connections, heady discussions, exciting plans for future projects.  At Wednesday's party for friends and supporters old and new, there was an almost tangible fizz of creativity as groups formed and reformed, the conversational volume rose, and gestures grew ever more expansive. In the midst of all this buzziness, I was twice able to slow down a little for much-needed reflection.  The first pause was at the Soho Theatre where I spent an afternoon exploring 'The Writer's Journey' with Sarah Dickenson, the BBC'…

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STRESS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 17 May, 2012

How does one manage stress? Breath deeply? Go to your 'happy place'? Remember to step back and put things into perspective? I have no trouble breathing, my happy place is the theatre and when I step back to put things into perspective I see a huge building, a £2.2 million budget and the possibility of mistakes that could be costly. Oh - and I'm a control freak. Does that make it better or worse, I wonder? Well of course it makes the stress worse - I care about everything so deeply it's all consuming; but the outcome better - that very care means atte…

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GAME CHANGER

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 16 May, 2012

Every now and again, a piece of theatre comes along that changes the scope of the work that follows it.  It's been an interesting week, as London is currently hosting the first revival of a major game changer: Einstein on the Beach.  The production has divided the critics and brought shame on the Jagger family, but it seems unlikely to have the same impact on practitioners as it did when it was first performed.  But it's not the only show in town that has sparked vigorous debate.  At the other end of London, the Lyric has excited the wrath of the Da…

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SMALL WONDER

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 15 May, 2012

Delaware is known as a place that is a tax free state. The Vice President of the United States, Joe Biden, is from Delaware. Many companies have their official home in Delaware, yeah for tax reasons. It's a small state with beautiful beaches, a big shopping mall, lots of highways, some serious suburbs that really aren't so suburban anymore, and a yearly flower market at Mother's Day in Rockford Park - to name but a few little Delaware tidbits. The most special thing about Delaware however is that it is the current home to my darling nephew Henry James. He is the now newest ad…

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QUALITY

by brackets digital

Monday, 14 May, 2012

Editing my CV -  which I appear to be having a stab  at every week, so it seems (Note: ‘stab’ being the key word here as it is generally painful, as many of you will know) -  got me thinking about some work I did on ‘quality’ for a previous employer.  It was a big, thorough (fairly arduous) piece of work but a really useful way to check that every part of the organisation and its services are working holistically and to high standards. Many spreadsheets and cross-referenced notes later it did create a picture about the …

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GOING BACK TO THE SOURCE

by brackets digital

Friday, 11 May, 2012

Yesterday I made an unscheduled trip back to the very source of Closer Than The Jugular, the play I have written for The Park.  The script emerged out of 'N4 Stories', a project that involved interviewing over a hundred local people in order to find stories and characters for a play set in the area.  One of my early visits was to the Turkish, Kurdish and Cypriot Women's Welfare Group, which meets every Thursday on Durham Road.  I was received with such warmth and openness (despite the baffling nature of what I was after) that I went back man…

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THE MAVERICKS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 10 May, 2012

"You're such a Maverick, Jez" said Sean Mathias on the phone this morning. I could sense the glint in his eye, the slight grin and hear the pride in his voice. Like all our Ambassadors, Sean, one of the most respected directors in the industry worldwide, is a close part of the Park Theatre family. It's important that the whole team support everything we do and his line was a response to my telling him of our decision to hire Andrew Fishwick. Like all of us, he believes that everybody deserves a second chance - and that great opportunities now lie ahead... A y…

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BALANCE

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 9 May, 2012

I have had several discussions with directors over the last few days about the role of obsession and dedication in any creative career.  Are the people who succeed invariably those who give every waking moment to their art, or is it the people who can stand back from their work and find balance in their lives who eventually triumph?  It’s a thorny issue, as there are always more people to meet, more shows to see and more forms to fill in.  Or perhaps the very idea of balance is laughable?

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HEAD GAME

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 8 May, 2012

Luckily I took a typing class when I was in high school. I also spent time working at a high profile bank when I was 17. I hated that - but let's not get into that now. Anyway,  I'm pretty fast at my typing which is very useful as I'm the secretary for our Board meetings. Furiously typing conversation so that I don't lose the thread when decisions are made, my only way of keeping up is to record the lot! I also used to read insanely fast. At university I spent one day reading 2 novels and wrote papers on them both Lady Audley's Secret and Sense and Sensibility. T…

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HISTORY

by brackets digital

Monday, 7 May, 2012

Although we will be the only theatre in Finsbury Park, we are certainly not the first.  There was a beautiful Frank Matcham building on the other side of the station which was very sadly demolished in 1960.  Here's a little bit of information about the building and its claim to fame! "The Finsbury Park Empire was built by Frank Matcham for Moss Empires Ltd at a cost of 45,000 and opened on the 5th of September 1910 with a capacity of around 2000. The Theatre closed on the 7th of May 1960 and was demolished in 1965.  

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ALCHEMY

by brackets digital

Friday, 4 May, 2012

Another fundraiser last night, this time lubricated by the delights of the new Park Theatre Highball, kindly provided by the Compass Box Whisky Company.  It was a cold drink on a cold, damp night - the site is still very draughty, drippy and puddly - and I could tell that a few of our guests were wondering just how, exactly, they had come to be drinking cocktails in their coats on a building site on a dismal Thursday night. But The Park did its magic once again and, warmed by the tour of the building (and maybe a little by their whiskies), by the end of the evening our br…

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MY TASTE IN THEATRE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 3 May, 2012

Further to Charlie's comments yesterday, I must protest. I do not, as my cheeky assistant pointed out, favour shows that run without an interval. It depends entirley on the circumstance. So here are some thoughts on intervals: - If a production has a running time of more than 95 minutes, it should have an interval - If a production has a running time of less than 80 minutes, it should not have an interval - If a production is of a traditional three act play, it should generally be split into two halves and retain one, not two, intervals - T…

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INTERVALS

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 2 May, 2012

Jez and I were at the theatre last night, seeing a very good revival of Someone Who'll Watch Over Me.  It's an unusual play because it has a very long first half (about an hour and twenty minutes).  Jez likes short productions that run through without an interval, whereas I am blessed with the bladder of a five year old girl and the thirst of a sailor.  Imagine my horror when I heard that Einstein on the Beach, playing at the Barbican this week, lasts six hours with no interval.  It's the theatrical equivalent of a hosepipe ban, and I was worried that this…

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LITTLE AMERICANA

by Melli Bond

Tuesday, 1 May, 2012

So this time next week I'll be packing for NYC. I've been focusing so much on my day to day work that I realised time is running out to plan for the big apple. Things work a bit differently in New York and I'm pleased (as an American British woman) to have brought over a little slice of North America that is currently available for all you Londoners. That slice of Americana is Transmission - which I have co-founded with actress Ursula Campbell - also North American (Canadian to be  more specific). Transmission is a workshop for professional London actors to drop in and j…

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GETTING PHYSICAL

by brackets digital

Monday, 30 April, 2012

In part of my time, when I’m not working for Park Theatre, I am training to be a holistic massage therapist. While this may not seem directly relevant, the connection of art and science is often explored in theatre and there are many threads between the two elements that I find increasingly interesting. On one level just think of the everyday uses we have for describing how we feel or think:  a ‘need for room to breathe’ or  ‘my heart is in my mouth’ . Our physical feelings relate to our thoughts and vice versa. Most of the time…

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TIME WILL TELL

by brackets digital

Monday, 23 April, 2012

A week of very successful tours has just passed, notching up the number people in the industry who’ve seen the space  to over 500. Obviously, there are hundreds more people to have a look around and all it takes is an email to me to get you on the list. ([email protected]) It’s interesting to hear people’s reactions to the concept of a new theatre. A place with no history. It can be quite difficult to comprehend the prospect of something new, where there is no legacy or tradition. Park Theatre is unique for exactly this reason.  It can…

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TOURS TAKING PLACE

by brackets digital

Monday, 16 April, 2012

Industry tours began last week, which means that people that work in any capacity related to theatre can have the opportunity to look around the (building) site and hear about all the innovative technical features, and our artistic policies that will be in place when we open. I haven’t been on-site for nearly a month so it was vitalising to see the progression that has taken place, and  also to hear again in full detail about all the intentions for the theatre and how the building will be. It can be quite hard to imagine as you walk around a roofl…

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TIME AND RHYTHM MAKES A LIVING...

by brackets digital

Monday, 9 April, 2012

“One cannot manage too many affairs: like pumpkins in the water, one pops up while you try to hold down the other.”     Chinese Proverb Recently, time and rhythm have been two things constantly on my mind. The juggling of time and tasks and the rhythm involved in achieving those tasks. Over the last 3 weeks I’ve been mostly sending out invitations to industry folk to attend tours of the Park Theatre in its growing glory. This may sound like a straight forward job, and it is to some extent. But 700 indi…

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NEW LOOK FOR THE PARTIES...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 2 April, 2012

So today we cleared out some of the items from the 'party room' (or 'the old site office' depending on your perspective) to make way for its imminent demolition. In fact it means that soon we'll have the whole floor for entertainment, meetings, discussions for group tours etc. With the weather getting warmer and, fingers crossed, dryer we'll soon have a far superior environment than we are used to. Long gone will be the days of huddling together around a radiator, glass of wine in hand, within the confines of a tiny space. That right folks our Park Theatre fundrai…

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BACK FROM ABROAD

by Jez Bond

Friday, 30 March, 2012

Well I'm back folks! (I say 'I' as Melli is still away - we both came home together but the very next morning she returned to Heathrow to catch a flight to a friend's wedding.) We had the most wonderful time. First we spent a week dog sledding in the north of Sweden with one of the few dog sled mushing kennels who actually give you a fully hands-on experience. They are called Axehandle Mountain and you can check out their website here. We did the "Winter Experience", each driving our personal tea…

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ENGAGEMENT

by brackets digital

Thursday, 29 March, 2012

As we hop nimbly from the architect's plan to the opening season, we are increasingly thinking about how we can engage with our audience.  As a theatre without a history, we have the pleasure of seeking out an entirely new audience, including, we hope, some people who will never have been to the theatre before.  Dave Hughes has designed a beautiful facade with  large panes of glass to attract people in from Clifton Terrace, but we are aware that it may take more than that to draw a diverse and curious crowd.  How can we overcome the stigma of theatre as a boring a…

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CONSTRUCTION

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 28 March, 2012

I had an unsettling experience earlier in the week, when a sizeable chunk of one of London's leading theatres was dislodged by the foot of an audience member in the gallery.  I say chunk because the piece was hard to describe: it was about two feet long and a foot wide, and was basically a metal sheet which had been coated in carpet.  It fell about ten feet and, to the horror of everyone in the auditorium, landed on the head of an audience member in the circle below.  There was enough blood for the whole thing to be quite frightening, but I believe the audience member …

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PLAYS ARE LIKE BABIES

by brackets digital

Tuesday, 27 March, 2012

My first play, What You Do To People, turned my life upside down.  The first draft was written half an hour at a time, every night as soon as my two toddlers were asleep.  No time to look over what I’d written the night before; some nights it all just spilled out, other nights I just had to force myself to write something, anything, continuously for those thirty minutes until, some months later, I eventually had a document.  Something with a beginning, a middle of sorts, and an end.  Lots of holes and not much sense, but i…

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POWER!

by Jez Bond

Monday, 26 March, 2012

As Spiderman wisely noted, great power comes with great responsibility, not to mention great lycra.  In the absence of Jez and Melli, I have appointed myself de facto Artistic Director of Park Theatre, and have spent most of the last week rubbing my hands with unrestrained glee.  The great power has been altogether pleasant, but time is running out on my reign of terror / benevolence / polite ambivalence, and it would be irresponsible not to leave a striking legacy.  Should I raid the Education Floor coffers and blow it all on a giant glitter ball?  I’ve always …

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A PLACE OF SAFETY

by brackets digital

Friday, 23 March, 2012

“I felt so free to experiment in the improvisations, and also to throw in ideas – I think we all did.  It was a lovely group.” This is from an email I received the other day from one of our N4 Stories actors, talking about the year we spent researching and experimenting with what is now Closer Than The Jugular, a play set in Finsbury Park that will be part of The Park’s opening season. A few days after this email, in an interview about The Park for the new StageWon website, I found myself talking about how I began writi…

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SO MANY GOOD THINGS

by brackets digital

Thursday, 22 March, 2012

The last few weeks since I began as Melli’s assistant have been a huge and enjoyable learning curve and an abundance of new experiences. From meeting a lot of passionate and interesting people to working those fundraising parties for that all important money for the education floor.  And,  the trials and tribulations of occasionally being on a building site. Amongst many aspects, we all look very special in those hard hats and heavy boots - building-site chic is where it’s at! Another great thing is the opportunity to see so much new work as we r…

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TOWARDS A FEMALE FRIENDLY THEATRE

by brackets digital

Wednesday, 21 March, 2012

One of the exciting developments on site this week is the appearance of wall structures for the dressing rooms and toilets.  As anyone who has been on a tour will know, we have more ladies’ toilets than gents’, for which we expect a loud round of applause.  Unfortunately I lack the basic credentials for accessing ladies’ toilets, but I’ve walked apologetically past enough queues of women to know how important this is. When I shared this information with Twitter on Monday, I described Park Theatre as ‘female friendly’.  Not, I …

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THE RIBBON DANCE

by brackets digital

Tuesday, 20 March, 2012

  Now...Im not qualifying any of my praise for Pitchfork Disney but after my blog last night, I did begin to think about Matilda in greater detail...or rather...I thought about Miss Trunchbull’s ribbon dance. This was for me, the highlight of the show... and the subject of  much post- show-pub discussion, with the man himself. Bertie Carvel is a friend of Park Theatre, (he worked with Melli and our Ambassador, David Horovitch on a radio play a few years back) and his unbelievable performance in Matilda has been the stand-out, break through, tour de f…

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GHOST TRAIN

by brackets digital

Monday, 19 March, 2012

From one end of the theatrical spectrum to the other... Matilda on Wednesday, Pichfork Disney on Saturday... Both shows were produced with greatness in mind, the latter by our wonderful board member Danielle Tarento. But While Matilda was unquestionably well done and hugely enjoyable, I seem to have developed a growing taste for what London’s smaller fringe venues have to offer. After years spent in West End shows, it seems an antidote is required and I certainly got my fix from the darker side on Saturday. ‘You know why the ghost train is so popula…

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PASSING THE BATON

by Jez Bond

Friday, 16 March, 2012

Whilst you will see, on the right hand side, that you can only go back as far as November 2011, the Park Theatre blog has actually been running daily since June 2010! The reason you can't see back to the very beginning is that all the blogs posted on old website are yet to be added to this server. It's on the long list of things to do and we'll get round to it soon, as it should prove to be a valuable resource. Nearly two years on from that inaugral blog and 99% of the posts have been by me. However, Melli and I are going away for a few days break this w…

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THE PARK LADIES

by Melli Bond

Thursday, 15 March, 2012

This blog is dedicated to the wonderful women of Park Theatre: We've had a brilliant fundraising season and we could not have done this without the blood sweat and dedication of the sisters of Park. Annabel Topham Director of Development, who has worked on our all our fundraising, has proudly brought us to the halfway mark of raising £200,000!  Amy Lumsden, my amazing assistant, has taken on the mammoth task of coordinating our industry tours and been a massive support to me. Nouska Hanly, Press and PR manager, has taken…

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APPLICATIONS GALORE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 14 March, 2012

Just finished writing another funding application. It's amazing the difference in what different trusts and foundations ask for. Some ask for a two page document, no longer or it will not be read. Others for reams of material. Others ask for a small amount at the first stage and then more and more as time goes on. I liked this one though - it was fairly detailed for a first stage, but in a way I preffered that. Sometimes you wonder how on earth you can fit everything into just two pages. Fingers crossed, off in the post tomorrow, and a few more to send in the next few days before our…

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AGENTS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 13 March, 2012

A great day today that started with a presentation to the literary and creatives agents at United. Melli and I chatted away in the plush board room at their offices on Lexington Street, showing them images of the building and discussing artistic and literary policies. It's great to share our plans with some of the biggest names in the agency world - and Rachel, StJohn's assistant, is now going to set up another presentation with the acting agents their (two very separate departments as we learnt). This evening Leah Schmidt, co-founder of The Agency, and soon to be boar…

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GREAT DRAMA STARTED IN N4

by Jez Bond

Monday, 12 March, 2012

Some twelve or so years ago I worked for a company called Y Touring, who were then based on Lennox Road in Finsbury Park (directly opposite Pooles Park Primary School). It was my first introduction to the area and having spent time in N4 then and now later having returned I had insight into the changes that had taken place - and was able to create a fair forecast of how Finsbury Park might look and 'feel' in a further few years, given significant regeneration that is taking place. It was then with great excitement that I went to the Royal Albert Hall tonight, to watch …

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ANOTHER PARTY

by Jez Bond

Friday, 9 March, 2012

Not yet 'partied out' but lesser teams than my Park family might easily be at this stage. We've had a long run of on-site events and it's been fantastic but tiring working every night; setting up before, presenting and hosting during and clearing up afterwards. Today a wonderfully supportive local resident hosted a party for a few of her friends and colleagues and we met some highly enthused members of the community keen to help the theatre in any way they can. Tomorrow is a full day again - starting with teaching in the morning and ending with the submission of more gran…

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EVERYTHING MUST GO!

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 8 March, 2012

It was Chris McGill's party on site tonight with a lovely bunch of people - mainly local. We've enlisted plenty more people to sign the wall - the new campaign we launched a few days ago. We had more enquiries about toilets, and the possibility of a corporate sponsor for the bar. Meanwhile someone from the previous party has bought the staircase up the Education Floor. Just have to think how to design all this so there aren't plaques on every light switch and tap! 

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LORD ARCHER

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 7 March, 2012

The highlight of the day was undoubtedly our afternoon meeting with Lord Jeffrey Archer at his riverside penthouse - often remarked on as the best view in London (I would agree). Lord Archer has kindly agreed to be the auctioneer for a gala dinner and auction that we are organising. The date is soon to be confirmed - as is a high profile compere for the evening. Having Lord Archer is already a great start and as the grey skies cleared over the houses of parliament we left feeling excited and inspired about what we could achieve. Much more on this anon....

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OVERLOAD

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 6 March, 2012

Following a meeting with the structural engineer in the early afternoon, we were told that the loading requirements for an education space use were far more stringent than for residential apartments. As such, unless we want a restriction on numbers we may have to install more steel. Slightly odd of course as one can only physically fit less than a hundred on that floor - and two flats could easily host a party for fifty people on the same Saturday night. So what does this actually mean? At what stage does the integrity of the building get compromised - and it... well...fall down?

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ADMIN IS A FULL TIME JOB

by Jez Bond

Monday, 5 March, 2012

I consider myself a pretty tidy person - and when it comes to my desk I can't live like one of those "it looks like a mess but I know exactly where everything is" kinds of people! So today alarm bells rang when piles started to appear on my desk. It's taken most of the day to clear them - as they always tend to be the boring time-consuming things that one doesn't want to do: setting up a direct debit, writing to Thames Water, filing financial information... oh the joys! Now as the BBC Radio interview Tamzin and I did last week uploads to YouTube, I write …

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ALL THAT JAZZ

by Jez Bond

Friday, 2 March, 2012

Just about to leave the house to go to Camden's Forge - where a friend of ours is singing and playing the piano tonight. I'd been to the venue with Dave Hughes some months ago for a spot of lunch and a look around, as it was deemed by a number of people in the industry (both architectural and artistic) to be a wonderful conversion of a building. Indeed it looked it when we toured around during the day - and now I'm very much looking forward to seeing it in action! Earlier this morning I met a colleague of one of our trustees who runs a music promotions company - an…

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BENEFACTORS, BUGHES AND BUDDIES

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 1 March, 2012

There are many people without whom this entire project would not be possible, but the most important is our major donor. It’s incredibly rare for a benefactor to be so gracious in their giving and devoid of any ulterior motives. The result, for us, is a dream come true – the opportunity to “get on with it”: to build a theatre that is led by the artist and not by committee. This continued confidence in us gives me strength every day – but, as the saying goes, ‘with great power comes great responsibility’. The £2.2m project costs a…

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THEY GROW SO FAST, DON'T THEY?

by Jez Bond

Monday, 27 February, 2012

This weekend - amongst seeing shows, leading workshops, reworking budgets and general emails - we miracously managed to get to Finsbury Park with the video camera and capture some of the progress on site. We'd been meaning to do this for so long and it's just in the nick of time as in a couple more weeks the top floors will again have changed dramatically. The only down side about the whole thing was that we were so tired it ended up being a rather quick, and possibly less energetic than usual, zip round. Not sure when we'll release Episode 4, we may wait for the next round o…

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PROBABLE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 20 February, 2012

A few meetings on site today including a good chat with the General Manager of Improbable and a couple of their associate artists. A company whose work we certainly admire. Let’s hope that, when we’re ready to programme, something fits! I was advised to check to Peter Hall’s diaries on building the National Theatre - note to self, must buy. The day ended with a screening of a new Tim Roth film produced by my friend Rupert Jermyn, great to see the rough cut of what should prove to be a great british thriller. A bigger blog soon I hope - I…

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TAMZIN CAN'T WAITE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 13 February, 2012

Tamzin Outhwaite has been officially inaugurated as an Ambassador for Park Theatre - and a prouder, energetic, more active ambassador we could not wish for! What most people didn't know is that Tamzin has already been working behind the scenes with me over the past ten days and - as a result - we are about to release a very exciting video within the next few hours! Let's just say she's not the only star of it. So watch this space!..... We may also have some further exciting news early next week as we are hatching all sorts of marvellous plans. She's …

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THE ROUTE THROUGH...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 6 February, 2012

The route through the lower ground floor is cold and damp, water drips down through cracks in the floor above and steel columns prop tonnes of concrete. This is not the set for the latest low budget horror movie - although it does a very good impression of being exactly that. No, this is the stalls-to-be; and beyond this dark atmosphere a modest but comfortable room awaits, filled with plans and folders, tables and chairs, hard hats and boots. This is the new site office - and the warmth hits you as soon as you enter. So as the February snow melts above our heads we sit inside our very o…

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REGENERATION

by Jez Bond

Monday, 30 January, 2012

“Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen” I began “I'm Jez Bond, Artistic Director for Park Theatre”. It’s a title that used to sound alien but now comes as second nature. I’ve given countless speeches at tours, presentations and meetings that I’ve become incredibly comfortable in talking on all aspects of the theatre. Today I was at the Finsbury Park Regeneration Conference addressing forty or so residents, business owners and councillors across the three boroughs of Islington, Hackney and Haringey. The key topic I was asked to discus…

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BIG TRIP FOR BIG MEN IN BIG SOCIETY

by Melli Bond

Monday, 23 January, 2012

It's only for one night but packing to stay away is still something that takes thought - mainly because I remember how cold it is 'Up North'! Going to Leeds you would think I was heading for some unheard of town or half expecting a wild journey as I rationed my water and covered up with my huge blanket/scarf/rug - a very snugglish item. On arrival to the theatre there were all sorts of people inviting me in - it did suddenly feel like I was on a journey back in time to 1910. Big Society, directed by the lovely Rod Dixon of Red Ladder, had a great mix …

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SLEEPING DOGS

by Jez Bond

Monday, 16 January, 2012

I spent the day helping a great friend of mine, playwright Brenda Gottsche, with her latest production 'Sleeping Dogs'. The play tells the story of a man who has led a double life of sorts and whose family is coming to terms with the revelation. I have known Brenda since I directed a production of The Fulham Jesus, her first play at Barons Court Theatre (and subsequently worked on three further productions with her there and at the Old Red Lion).  Today I helped the team by providing audio recording and editing facilities (my sideline) - as some of the play is set…

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TIME

by Melli Bond

Monday, 9 January, 2012

Minutes... Hours...Weeks... Years Sitting on hold for 20 minutes. Waiting on the platform 5 minutes. Taking the meeting's minutes. Walking my Mastiff for 1 hour. Planning the party for 3 weeks. Having a dream for 12 years. Building a dream for 2 years. Time to share the passion and the excitement... Every minute.

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2012: THE YEAR STARTS HERE!

by Jez Bond

Monday, 2 January, 2012

It's a bank holiday Monday here in the UK, but for the Park Theatre team the second of January means the first day of the most important year ever. There's lots to be done and we have a strong feeling that this year may just go by quicker than ever. Whilst most start back on the 3rd the team have already put in a few good hours today. Tomorrow we are expecting delivery of our development packs back from the printers and the giant task of reaching our goal towards the education floor kicks up a gear. You'll all be hearing from us very soon indeed!  

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NEW YEAR'S PLANS CANCELLED

by Jez Bond

Friday, 30 December, 2011

By order of the management - I must remain resting. Rightly so, otherwise I'll never get better!

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REFER TO YESTERDAY!

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 29 December, 2011

I have been instructed to stay in bed and off the computer!

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BY ORDER OF THE MANAGEMENT

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 28 December, 2011

I have been instructed to stay in bed and off the computer!

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OOPS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 27 December, 2011

Never go out when you are only just starting to get better, you'll only get ill again!

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GETTING BETTER...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 26 December, 2011

I'm towards the end of this illness now - at least I hope so. A weekend spent mostly in bed (up for Christmas lunch thankfully) and today I am slowly getting back to normality; starting to catch up with the many tasks that have been piling up. We'll leave it there for today - time for another Lemsip!

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CATCHING UP WITH ME

by Jez Bond

Friday, 23 December, 2011

Well it was only a matter of time and sure enough, with the festive season here, the cold weather outside and having stopped for a couple of days rest last weekend, my body has decided that enough is enough. I woke up ill this morning. My achilles heel when I am run down is always the glands in my throat - and typically my throat is burning and it hurts when I swallow. So lots of rest (well as much as possible), hot drinks and... well that's it really. The usual meds are lemsip and ibuprofen. Sadly antibiotics never work so it's just a matter of letting it take its course. Does m…

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CHRISTMAS IS COMING

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 22 December, 2011

So much to do, so little time. Christmas is coming, email responses from people are slowing down and most people aren't picking up the phones. Dave and I are still battling on with loads to do. On site the substation walls are nearly complete. Soon we'll forget we ever had that space - which will be a good thing to get used to! Desperately cold outside now. The wind is picking up and with our roof off, the wet weather is most unwelcome. Tomorrow's the last day on site then then work will resume on the 3rd January. Here, however, in the warmth of my flat, work continues as eve…

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PUPPETS COME TO LIFE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 21 December, 2011

A day of meetings, some at home, some on site and some out in Soho. I showed Sam West the building and he was very excited by the project. I hope he may be able to give us some time and get involved - he lives locally so that's a plus. In the evening we went to the first show in a long time to which we bought a ticket (rather than being invited). It was War Horse. A truly magical experience for the life-like puppets of the horses (and a star appearance from a goose!) After a short time one ceased to see the puppeteers (who were superb not just at the movements but…

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GROWING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 20 December, 2011

Today our Chairman and I met three new board members, who will officially voted on at our January board meeting. It's very exciting as the diversity of skills and experience is now really fantastic. On site the floor joists for the fourth floor are halfway complete and the new floors are visible from the pavement. We're growing in the right direction. In the evening a fun play at the White Bear - where I seem to be becoming quite a regular!

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BREATH THAT FRESH AIR!

by Jez Bond

Monday, 19 December, 2011

What a lovely break! Yes a complete break, as in no phone calls and (almost!) no emails for three days. We had a long weekend in Dorset with some friends; Christmas carols, log fires, country walks, late nights - and late mornings. I feel revived and ready for the tens of shows I am seeing over the next few weeks.

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TRYING TO LEAVE

by Jez Bond

Friday, 16 December, 2011

Need to pack for the country but there's so much to do. This weekend we are having a little getaway with some friends who have just moved down to Dorset. I'm determined to leave before the hell that is Friday traffic kicks in....! Blog - done :)

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KEEPING THE FORCE STRONG

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 15 December, 2011

'm starting to feel the inevitable slow down of productivity from certain quarters as Christmas sets in. It's the usual combination of a rush of last minute requests and, in certain cases, a 'winding down for the holidays' mentality. However at ground control, despite illness, the force is still strong amongst the Park Jedi. Annabel was a real (storm)trooper earlier as, dosed up with drugs but coughing none the less, she braved a one hour Skype meeting. I'm not quite sure where this random Star Wars theme has come from - I'm not even a major fan of the …

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THE TEAM GROWS...

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 14 December, 2011

We have two new board members - but I won't announce them until they are official. We have a great quote from Nick Kent (Artistic Director of the Tricycle Theatre) who came round site today: “Park Theatre is an incredibly exciting new theatre in an area of London not well-served by the Arts. The new building promises to be very popular with local people, and to be a landmark destination for all Londoners.” Nicolas Kent, Artistic Director, Tricycle Theatre We're starting our fundraising parties in the new year …

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GOOD DAY

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 13 December, 2011

Lots of meetings and lots of things bubbling away that are starting to come to the boil. Amazingly it was the first day that I felt 'wow, I'm not behind with emails etc' - yes, I know, always a bad sign; it usally means that a storm is brewing.

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STARBUCKS

by Jez Bond

Monday, 12 December, 2011

Starbucks, Victoria Street, London. Not the most glamorous of meeting places, but a handy one for both Sean Mathias and me. Over some hot chocolate we chatted about the key fundraising priorities for the theatre over the next vital few months - and it was wonderful to see Sean, like our other Ambassadors, fully engaged in the process. Despite his hectic commitments next year, he will host a party on site, invite friends and colleagues to our fundraising launch and help me write letters to other potential supporters. We're also looking to secure some big names for these events - watch…

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REMAINING OPEN

by Jez Bond

Friday, 9 December, 2011

Must we always be remain open to everything around us, to possibilities, to the potential of an open door? It's true that it you close yourself off from the world, if you don't send out the right messages into the world, then the things you want to happen aren't just going to come to you. So should I feel guilty for switching off on the tube? For five minutes of Angry Birds, for zoning out for a few moments? Should I be sitting riding the Victoria line sending out Park Theatre's fundraising needs to the carriage of strangers? You know I probably should, but I just don'…

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SITE SPECIFIC

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 8 December, 2011

A site specific promenade show in Shoreditch Town Hall today, with my friend Hugh Ross playing a simply awful human being. He's lovely in real life, honest! We walked from room to room, with action happening continually around us and the atmosphere was dark and intriguing. As we were finally ejected onto the pavement at the back of the building nobody quite knew whether the show was really over or not. Tomorrow it's on to safer pastures - where one can sit in a theatre seat and watch a show from the comfort of the shadows!  

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CREATIVE ISLINGTON

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 7 December, 2011

We had a successful networking event this evening, hosted by our lovely neighbours John Jones. 25 or so people came on a site tour of the theatre (whilst a similar number attended a tour of John Jones - well worth the visit by the way) and then around 90 people convened in John Jones' gallery space for wine, talks and a short extract from the play that our writer in residence Sarah Rutherford has been working on. The evening was attended by some key figures from the council including the Major, Phil Kelly (a local ward councillor), Paul Convery, the Executive Member for Leisure and R…

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NAUGHTY

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 6 December, 2011

I didn't write a blog today. For the first time in.... over a year.... ever?..... oh dear... so much to do! 

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NEW DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR

by Jez Bond

Monday, 5 December, 2011

We're very excited to welcome Annabel Topham to the team! An incredibly talented, intelligent person with a delightful bubbly personality and tremendous energy, we have no doubt that Annabel will be a valuable asset to the Park family.  It's lovely to see some donors coming forward after all our recent tours. There are loads of ways to get involved and support us and now with Annabel on board we will be sure to power full speed ahead with our fundraising. You can see her photo and biography under the staff page and if you'd like to talk to her about…

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EXCEEDING OUR TARGETS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 2 December, 2011

Earlier in the year we set ourselves a target of showing round 250 theatre companies / producers / directors by the end of this year. I'm pleased to announce that we have exceeded this target and will have shown round almost 300 by Christmas. A week tomorrow is the final group tour - an exclusive one for the NE London branch of Equity. However today was the last of the general industry tours for this year - and, across two groups, we showed round fifty people; including some West End producers and drama schools.  The drive now over the next few weeks will be on the fu…

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BIRTHS, DEATHS & MARRIAGES

by brackets digital

Thursday, 1 December, 2011

I enjoy a good switchboard as much as the next man: the automated selection system and synthesised Wagner are enough to brighten up any winter morning, and this is particularly the case with a local government hot line.  I sometimes detect a certain wariness when I get through to an operator, almost as if I might be calling the council because I want something from them.  I do, and so the game is to make me somebody else's problem.  Each call is like a little tour of their extension list.  'You'll want to speak to Gary', I'm told, but unfortunately…

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101 DALMEMAILS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 30 November, 2011

At 2pm this afternoon I counted the emails that had been pouring in since 8.30am. Over 70 - and, amazingly, I had just about been keeping on top of them. By 6pm it was over 100. It's always like that on days in between tours, the buzz seems to be superstrong and traffic starts to pile up on the information highway. It's hectic, but at the same time fun - knowing that we are sparking such interest. Melli said that over the course of the day she received proposals from theatre companies throughout the UK, Australia and... Utah! It's gone 10pm now and we've just f…

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NEW AMBASSADOR

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 29 November, 2011

A busy day on site today - with two industry tours and two local residents tours and meetings in between. The result of the lunchtime tour was a long chat, over 'breakfast', with director Sean Mathias - who, we're very excited to announce, joins Celia Imrie and Roger Lloyd Pack as an Ambassador for Park Theatre. Sean and I are meeting to chat about the way forward in the next week or so. So more on this anon.... Suffice to say there are some exciting opportunities for us all!

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BUSY WEEKEND

by Jez Bond

Monday, 28 November, 2011

A busy weekend with an evening party, a lunch party, a rehearsal (with the kids I teach) and a show at Waterloo East Theatre. In the midst of all this, two more funding applications done. Today we're sending out five more and preparing for more site tours tomorrow...

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APPLICATIONS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 25 November, 2011

Loads more applications today, so many to post out and so many emails to respond to that we still haven't plugged the new website in all the social media. I'm waiting for a time when I can dedicate 30 minutes (at least) to plastering over Facebook and Twitter and, ideally, sending out some emails. 8.30pm and typically it's still go go go here at base camp. Both Melli and I furiously working away. For her there's a week of tour left to arrange and emails still fly in every hour with new people wanting to join...

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MORE TOURS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 24 November, 2011

Whoah. I'm getting exhausted from these site tours - but, at the same time, it's great fun. Between the morning and afternoon sessions we showed round another 40 people today. Fun to point to the bay window which now proudly sits there in steel awaiting its floor and glazing. 

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YOUNG VIC DIRECTORS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 23 November, 2011

Today we did a workshop for a group of 25 Young Vic Directors in Short Street (opposite the Young Vic). Following our many site tours (more tomorrow) it was a refreshing change to present our plans in a different space and context. Here we delivered a workshop looking - in a similar way to the transmission workshop I ran a few weeks back - at the changing styles of theatre and auditoria forms over the years. We concluded that there is a need for an extremely intimate theatre now... enter Park Theatre (and our presentation).

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WELCOME TO THE NEW WEBSITE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 21 November, 2011

Well, it's been a busy year for us at Park Theatre. As we fast approach Christmas, we will have toured round over 250 theatre companies, directors and producers, we will have the majority of new steel in place and we will have launched our fundriaising initiaives. We have been working with the wonderful 'Feast Creative' over the past few months to develop a brand. We've come up with an identity of which we are very proud and I write today's blog, for the first time, from the new website. In a couple of weeks we will have, back from the printers, …

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NEW WEBSITE A MATTER OF DAYS AWAY

by Jez Bond

Friday, 18 November, 2011

Exciting times. New website days away. Development pack the same. A private launch to our board on Monday evening and then the public unveiling to follow shortly after.

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NEW WEBSITE A MATTER OF DAYS AWAY

by Jez Bond

Friday, 18 November, 2011

Exciting times. New website days away. Development pack the same. A private launch to our board on Monday evening and then the public unveiling to follow shortly after. I’ve just learned to scan on the new printer. Forgot it could do that. Took a while to figure it out but now extremely helpful – no longer the need to rush over to Dave’s and ask for a favour! The frustrating thing was that it ran out of ink earlier – both black and colour – so I had to rush down to PC world (I made it just before they closed at 8pm). The printer cost around £…

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OFFICE PARTY

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 17 November, 2011

If you’re expecting a night out sitting in an auditorium watching a play on stage and you’re not able to adapt your expectations then Office Party at the Pleasance just isn’t for you. If, however, you fancy a non-traditional theatrical experience, a few drinks, some laughs and perhaps the opportunity to make some friends then this is just the ticket! I won’t give it away for those who haven’t seen it but suffice to say it’s enormous fun, full of surprises and I highly recommend it.

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OFFICE PARTY

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 17 November, 2011

 If you’re expecting a night out sitting in an auditorium watching a play on stage and you’re not able to adapt your expectations then Office Party at the Pleasance just isn’t for you. If, however, you fancy a non-traditional theatrical experience, a few drinks, some laughs and perhaps the opportunity to make some friends then this is just the ticket! I won’t give it away for those who haven’t seen it but suffice to say it’s enormous fun, full of surprises and I highly recommend it. Great to see two known faces in the ‘show’…

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BIT BY BIT

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 16 November, 2011

Bit by bit today things have been getting closer to the finish line.On site I witnessed the fitting of some of the steel that had been delivered by the crane yesterday. Like a giant jigsaw puzzle it’s all starting to take shape. The hoarding at the front has received its first coat of red and a new ramp has been erected inside, to take the new steels up half a storey to the back of the building on the upper ground floor.

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BIT BY BIT

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 16 November, 2011

Bit by bit today things have been getting closer to the finish line. On site I witnessed the fitting of some of the steel that had been delivered by the crane yesterday. Like a giant jigsaw puzzle it’s all starting to take shape. The hoarding at the front has received its first coat of red and a new ramp has been erected inside, to take the new steels up half a storey to the back of the building on the upper ground floor. We had a good meeting with Charles from Hall Stage and started to chat about how and when we would go about the install of his kit – t…

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THE CRANE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 15 November, 2011

The road was closed and the crane arrived…. Wow! Sadly I did not make it to site today, with so much happening ‘back at the base’. Such a shame as I would have liked to video some of the manoeuvres. At least Jordan kindly emailed through some pictures.

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THE CRANE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 15 November, 2011

The road was closed and the crane arrived…. Wow! Sadly I did not make it to site today, with so much happening ‘back at the base’. Such a shame as I would have liked to video some of the manoeuvres. At least Jordan kindly emailed through some pictures. The crane delivered the largest steels to the front of the building. It also delivered the steels for the cantilevered bay window which have been installed. It’s great to see some of these large elements take shape. I’m on site tomorrow in meetings for most of the day – and look fo…

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THE CRANE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 15 November, 2011

The road was closed and the crane arrived…. Wow! Sadly I did not make it to site today, with so much happening ‘back at the base’. Such a shame as I would have liked to video some of the manoeuvres. At least Jordan kindly emailed through some pictures. The crane delivered the largest steels to the front of the building. It also delivered the steels for the cantilevered bay window which have been installed. It’s great to see some of these large elements take shape. I’m on site tomorrow in meetings for most of the day – and look fo…

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NO TRUTH BENDING REQUIRED

by Jez Bond

Monday, 14 November, 2011

A lot of work spent on grant applications for the Education Floor today. We are about to submit our second and, hopefully, as the week continues more will flow… It’s taken so long getting to the first one but that is apparently just the way it as; as the initial stages involve the most work – in our case re-drafting the business plan, creating a Case for Support and preparing answers for the array of questions that funders can ask.

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NO TRUTH BENDING REQUIRED

by Jez Bond

Monday, 14 November, 2011

A lot of work spent on grant applications for the Education Floor today. We are about to submit our second and, hopefully, as the week continues more will flow… It’s taken so long getting to the first one but that is apparently just the way it as; as the initial stages involve the most work – in our case re-drafting the business plan, creating a Case for Support and preparing answers for the array of questions that funders can ask. Having been through this process I am now feeling even more confident. I suppose because so many people end up needin…

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FRIDAY FINISH LINE

by Jez Bond

Friday, 11 November, 2011

It’s a race to the finish line and I’m racing against the clock. It’s 19.39 as I type this and I’d love to close the laptop lid by 20.00. Hope everyone’s enjoying a relaxing Friday night….!

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SEASON KITCHEN

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 10 November, 2011

This evening four of us went to Season Kitchen for, shamefully, the first time. The restaurant opened earlier this year and, judging by reviews online and by the fact that it was full tonight (luckily we had booked), seems to be doing incredibly well. And so it should be – the food was delicious, the service was great, the atmosphere was just right and the bill was very reasonable (we could have well spent double in a lesser restaurant in the centre of town. A great little find – I shall certainly be spreading the word.

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SEASON KITCHEN

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 10 November, 2011

This evening four of us went to Season Kitchen for, shamefully, the first time. The restaurant opened earlier this year and, judging by reviews online and by the fact that it was full tonight (luckily we had booked), seems to be doing incredibly well. And so it should be – the food was delicious, the service was great, the atmosphere was just right and the bill was very reasonable (we could have well spent double in a lesser restaurant in the centre of town. A great little find – I shall certainly be spreading the word. If it wasn’t for all that delicious Pro…

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VAT DOESN\'T HAVE TO BE BORING!

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 9 November, 2011

What a great night! It was the annual fundraiser for the Charity Finance Directors’ Group and I was kindly invited by SOC VAT, our VAT consultants. Socrates, who runs the company, is that rare thing – a true expert and someone who can translate complex matters into layman’s terms. If ever anyone needs VAT advice – he specialises in Charities and has some great theatres on his books – then he is your man. Check them out: www.socvat.com Tom, his colleague, who runs a firm that provides business advice – and again has an impressive c…

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OTHELLO

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 8 November, 2011

Been working with Charlie for the most part today. Excited to have him on board. Now he has loads to do – and is making good headway! We saw a very good production of Othello tonight – very pleased we went. Great performance from Iago. Short blog as tired and still so much work to do (yes typical I know). More tomorrow…

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KITCHEN SINK DRAMA

by Jez Bond

Monday, 7 November, 2011

We watched Wesker’s ‘The Kitchen’ at the NT tonight – a play I, and I think most people, hadn’t seen since Daldry’s production many years ago. After a drink and catch up with three fellow ex-Hull University members who were in the show, we are heading back home to complete some final emails before bed. It’s been a full day – Dave Hughes had some strong words to our contractors about the delay in the steelwork on site, Melli booked in a load more industry tours (two slots now fully booked) and I – amongst many other things – faci…

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SPARK AND TINGLE

by Jez Bond

Friday, 4 November, 2011

With now hundreds of emails flying in and out of my Mac I feel a quiet buzz of satisfaction this lovely Friday. I think the small firework display was really apt for me as I went into the Pleasance to see ‘Madeline On Toes’ presented by Hitgelamp Theatre Co. The small display reminded me of my own personal mini triumph over pain. No not the pain and stress you might think from creating a theatre but from a very old dance injury. I have started acupuncture and massage and with the wise Chinese natural wellness I am actually starting to feel relief. A tingle in my leg is a wond…

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FLATS FOR SALE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 3 November, 2011

We’ve just put our flats on the market today – not through an estate agent but through personal emails to a number of people who expressed an interest in purchasing the properties, potentially ‘off plan’. Next week the steel for the third and fourth floors gets craned on and things will start to move quickly. As we currently stand the completion date for the four one bedroom flats and one two bedroom penthouse is likely to be April 2012. Anyone interested should send an email to our [email protected] address so that we can send you some more information……

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DEGREES OF FAMILIARITY

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 2 November, 2011

On my way to Islington Arts Factory for our 33rd tour of a fellow venue. I haven’t been there for years and am keen to take a look inside. Later we’re returning to Teatro Technis where we saw a production just a month ago. In the middle it’s meetings on site and a review of the hoarding panels which have arrived. Hooray!

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PETER BROOK EMPTY SPACE AWARDS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 1 November, 2011

Today Melli and I were invited to the Annual Peter Brook Empty Space Awards. This is a ceremony that recognises innovation, creativity and excellence in smaller off West End, Fringe and Studio theatres across the UK. The event took place in the National Theatre Studio on The Cut and was attended by nearly 200 people made up in the most part by artistic directors, producers and critics. The ceremony was chaired, as it was organised, by the renowned theatre critic and real character, Blanche Marvin. It was our first trip to the awards and wonderful to be part of such an importan…

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HALLOWEEN

by Jez Bond

Monday, 31 October, 2011

The weekend was as busy as ever and towards the end of Sunday I flopped down on the sofa limbs weak, head gently aching – not enough to be ill but just to subtly taunt me – and eyes sore. I felt like the whole of the last few months had caught up with me. After an extended sleep and some food which was far better for the soul than it was for the waistline, I’m feeling a little more powered – apart from my painful neck which I feel like I want to rip off it’s so aggravating. Perhaps I just should as it’s Halloween today – I could be the headless m…

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RAT IN A BAG

by Jez Bond

Monday, 24 October, 2011

We saw the Rat today – we were on a tour of the theatre with the Old Vic crew and Mr Rat decided to make an appearance. He’s not the same rat that was previously resident – we know this as the last one ended up in a body bag. We’ll just have to lay some more traps. I think it’s the new trenches that have been dug. As soon as the site’s cleared out and we’re water tight again they’ll be gone – and we’ll rat-proof like mad. Talking of being water tight, as I write this it’s pouring with rain – the first in a…

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TEMERATURES RISING...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 17 October, 2011

Cooling, heating and ventilation – how many units, what power, where will they be located and where do the ducts go? In the interests of saving money on the M&E these questions have been re-examined over the past twenty four hours. Peter from Airworks has been working with Dave – and they have both been aided by the extremely knowledagble and helpful David ‘The Big’ Apple. We’ve made some headway and final diagrams are being drawn up.

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THE MODERN WORKER

by Jez Bond

Monday, 10 October, 2011

Melli and I are at the stage where we are almost emailing each other over the breakfast table to ask for the salt. Not that we don’t talk to each other, quite the contrary – simply that  our laptops are open pretty much 24/7 and, not wanting to disturb each other during a potential moment of high concentration, emailing is often the most efficient way of sending through a request so that it can be dealt with at an appropriate time. “Thanks” I type back, knowing she’s in the middle of coordinating diary dates… And so our days…

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GHOST TOWN

by Jez Bond

Monday, 3 October, 2011

I arose afresh to a warm Monday morning. Whilst I’ve been working 6.5 days a week somehow yesterday evening’s tranquil BBQ and beer in the garden enabled a rare weekend feeling in me. As such I arose with a ‘start to the week’ mentality, read a chapter of Celia’s autobiography, showered and headed out to my first meeting on site. On arrival I was struck by the sound of silence. Not a body was to be seen and, descending the building in its semi demolished state, I had a sudden feeling that I was on the set of a post apocalyptic drama (or, worse, in one for re…

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OCTOBER AIR CON

by Jez Bond

Friday, 30 September, 2011

In very unBritish fashion I have neglected commenting on the weather recently. So now I will. It has been thirty degrees for the past few days and today was no exception – a real scorcher. At 10pm we found ourselves at the Kings Head, for a late night show, where momentary bursts of air conditioning were much appreciated. After midnight now and heading home for a weekend full of theatre – two shows tomorrow and one on Sunday. Let’s hope that the others on the journey will provide a cool environment. It’s officially October 1st, who would have thought it!

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ROUND AFTER ROUND

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 29 September, 2011

Today was the last in the current rounds of tours – and it ended with a round… of applause. A response to the discussion of our Open Book policy*, the enthusiastic clapping from the twenty or so theatre companies, directors and producers sitting together in the site office was a  lovely finish to the last two weeks. We urged everyone to keep in touch and to spread the word. Spread across eight sessions we had met with around 120 people. I have a feeling that we’re going to be needing to see even more than 7 shows a week soon, so perhaps we’ll need to start s…

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15 SHOWS IN 14 DAYS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 28 September, 2011

I’ve been accustomed to going to the theatre regularly for most of my life. But following our recent site tours (2 more tomorrow) things have really picked up. In order to ensure that both theatres are curated with excellent work – that is to say for the weeks of the year when we aren’t producing in-house- we are committed to seeing as much work from both emerging and established companies, directors and producers as possible. Over the next 14 days I am seeing 15 shows and haven’t had a schedule more hectic than that since my last Edinburgh trip. Today marked the …

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MORE GREAT TOURS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 27 September, 2011

Wow. Another fantastic day of tours with some more really exciting theatre companies, producers and directors. The feedback has been great from all quarters and everyone is helping to spread the word. I can’t wait to get back together with people in a few months and start booking in some dates!

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EPISODE THREE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 26 September, 2011

This weekend I completed the edit of ‘How To Build a Theatre: Episode Three‘. It’s a fairly succinct look at the current state of building works, with an introduction to our project manager, the man on site every day coordinating works, Jordan Russell. If you haven’t yet seen it, then do take a peek. As things are now changing regularly, we will probably end up releasing the next episode in a couple of months. The steel starts arriving today and there is much heavy work to happen over the next few weeks, including road closures for cranes, additional st…

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POSITIVE VIBES

by Jez Bond

Friday, 23 September, 2011

The business plan has been through a major rewrite in the last ten days – and I am just finishing it off. Sections have been moved, deleted, reworded, added… all in all it’s a lot more thorough and gives a very clear idea of our markets, targets and strategies. In summary it made me feel even more positive about the project. There are now additional reasons and further supporting evidence as to why this is truly going to be an amazing project. A nice way to enter the weekend, though of course I’m continuing my 6.5 day weeks so there’s still no re…

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WORKING, YOGA AND WALKING THE DOG

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 22 September, 2011

It’s very exciting and there’s lots going on. This morning, after some invigorating yoga, I dealt with the various emails that had recently arrived by more theatre companies, producers and directors wanting to book tours. I had been fitting everyone in to our four slots next week – most of which are getting very booked up. In the afternoon I continued to sort out emails and had a meeting with Jez about the priorities for the next few weeks. We left the house early meetings prior to seeing a show at Jermyn Street. Jez met producer/director/friend Joe Fredericks, who had …

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TOUR DE FORCE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 21 September, 2011

After showing around some very lovely people this week I am super buzzed. I am so pleased to have shown around brilliant theatre companies, directors, producers and actors. The weather has been lovely today and with sunshine on our now roofless building everyone got to take in the space at a truly unusual time. We had some lovely feedback, great questions and enthusiasm from our guests. We are keen to nurture and develop these relationships and are thrilled and thankful to all who came and tweeted or facebooked post tour. Thanks indeed because we must spread the word for the good of ever…

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SLOWLY BUT SURELY

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 20 September, 2011

The day began with an edit of the previous two day’s site footage. But before I could get it finished I hurried off to site for a meeting with Martin, our fundraiser. We are making headway with things but it’s a laborious process, and actually importantly so when you only really have one shot at the approach to funders. A contractors’ site meeting had then been cancelled so I continued to work from the site office – pausing just for ten minutes when I nipped over to the trusty bagel shop on Seven Sisters Road. The architects then paid us (the royal we, …

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POWER!

by Jez Bond

Monday, 19 September, 2011

After two industry tours with over thirty people between them I was quite exhausted. Not as exhausted of course as I would have been if I had shown all thirty people round separately – hence the new regime of group tours, which is nicer actually as it starts to cultivate an atmosphere of community. Hard hats, high vis and hard soled shoes to the ready we kitted everyone out in the site office and talked about the architecture before traversing the building in a constantly reshaping mass of PPE yellow. Ending up back at the site office for details of the artistic policy and plenty o…

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7...2...1...

by Jez Bond

Friday, 16 September, 2011

A great day which I had long awaited as it involved a crucial meeting with an experienced theatre producer, board member and executive director who had so kindly offered me his time. 7 hours of analyising the staffing structure, the budgets and the business plan. 2 bottles of fizz.  1 bedtime story (for his gorgeous little girl). A highly productive day. Such valuable advice and insight. Now lots of homework…!

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ROGER LLOYD PACK

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 15 September, 2011

The roof is off, completely off, the building naked, exposed to the late summer sun. Work continues in all fields and I am most excited today to announce a new Ambassador for the theatre. Roger Lloyd Pack, who lives nearby, joins Celia Imrie as a stalwart supporter of the Park. A few days ago I showed him round and we discussed his involvement. We’re very excited to have him join the team and looking forward to developing our relationship together. Roger writes: “I am genuinely thrilled about the prospect of an exciting new theatre in North London in an area that&r…

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IDLER ACADEMY

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 14 September, 2011

I just spent a lovely evening at the Idler Academy, where Melli hosted a discussion between Sir Timothy Ackroyd and journalist / BBC foreign correspondent Frank Gardner. It was a fascinating event, with many stories of travel and politics. From German backpackers and trains from Cairo to the current situation in the middle east. Some distinguished guests. Very funny when I started telling Penelope Wilton about the theatre and she replied “is that the one in Finsbury Park?” Odd pizza afterwards – corn dough – tasted more like pastry. Heavy as anything bu…

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BREATH OF FRESH AIR

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 13 September, 2011

Something happened last week. Three things actually. And when they did they collided so perfectly that their union opened up a door and let in a breath of fresh air. It was almost as if I hadn’t realised the immense pressure I had been under for the past eighteen months until the audible sigh of relief with which I surprised myself. So whilst the way forward may be as complex and hard to tread as before I continue afresh, with a renewed energy. A realisation crossed my mind last week. It was the fact that I had been writing this blog for over a year – in fact neare…

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REMEMBER THE VIDEO

by Jez Bond

Monday, 12 September, 2011

The site is changing daily and today I took the camera to 11-13 Clifton Terrace in order to continue documenting the progress. All sorts going on behind the facade of scaffolding and hoarding. Roof coming off. Rubble piling up waiting for the skips. Padstones being created ready for the steels to arrive. Episode 3 of How To Build A Theatre coming soon to a screen near you…

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THE POWER OF THE BROKK

by Jez Bond

Friday, 9 September, 2011

On site today the Brokk remote controlled digger has been ripping through the concrete in order to form the trench for our substation. Meanwhile I have been riffling through a mountain of assorted tasks, working from home – which, due to 50% of the theatre currently being exposed to the elements, is a far more comfortable environment from which to conduct business. I usually work on Saturday and a half day Sunday but it looks like all work and no play’s just going to have make Jack a dull boy this weekend.

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FAMOUS LAST WORDS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 8 September, 2011

Okay so that note earlier in the week about having some time to read plays….. yeah right! Loads has happened in the last 48hours. There is enormous time pressure on the submission of funding applications for the education studio – and so much paperwork has to be prepared, redrafted, checked and double checked. That’s going to be the focus of the next few days. That and a million and one other things! As for today:  design team / contractor meeting followed by a tour and meeting with a fellow artistic director… and another… and then a catch…

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PROGRESSIONS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 7 September, 2011

This afternoon we had another meeting at Feast to develop the brand. We’re really excited at what we’ve arrived at and are now looking at the progressions of the sub-brands and the design of all stationery. Soon we’ll have the grand unveiling! I had hoped to add some text and graphics to the hoarding sooner but, whilst I’m always eager to do do do, there’s no need not rush things. On site things have changed. The concrete panels are coming off the front and the roof is being stripped off the back of the building. Let’s hope the rain stays aw…

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INDUSTRY TOURS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 6 September, 2011

Yesterday and today we sent out details of our industry tours, which we are hosting on various dates throughout September, and have had a great response back so far. If anybody is reading this blog and has not been notified directly, please let us know so that we can ensure you are on the specific industry mailing list. You can see the available dates and info on how to book here: http://www.parktheatre.co.uk/get-involved/tour-the-site/ To all our loyal local residents, please note that we will certainly be arranging more tours towards the end of the year. This indu…

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MORE MUSICALS, MORE SCRIPTS

by Jez Bond

Monday, 5 September, 2011

More CDs of musicals through the door (not more CD’s as EVERYONE SEEMS TO BE SAYING LATELY – sorry, little outburst from the grammar police!) More scripts too… so a heap of things to be read and heard. Earlier I had tea with Celia and she also passed me a script – she’s soon to be in a show at the Finborough,  I’m looking forward to that. And so to prioritise the various scripts I need to read. Generally I decide on the basis of which script comes in first. The only ones that break the rule are usually redrafts of scripts I am developi…

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DECISIONS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 2 September, 2011

Melli landed at Heathrow at 7am, came straight home, showered and then left with me to meet Feast Creative. It seems (he says cautiously) that we have reached a decision on the logo. Dum dum dum…….. A little too early for the unveiling but more on this to come… On site we looked at the programme of works and got our head round some key decisions that needed to be made over the course of the next few months. Back home now and suddenly it’s 6pm. Decisions now – food!

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THEATRE HOPPING

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 1 September, 2011

Two evenings of great musicals. Last night I attended a marvellous and very funny production of Crazy For You in the open air at Regent’s Park. Tonight I returned (for the 7th show this year?) to the Southwark Playhouse where a terrific, powerful production of Parade is currently playing. Lovely to see the producers, Joe and Danielle, and to hook up, albeit briefly, with actor Philip Rham who I hadn’t seen for a few years. Earlier this afternoon, while Melli packed her bags to fly home from New York (where she has been for the past week) I stepped into the offices …

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UP AND RUNNING AGAIN

by Jez Bond

MONDAY, 31 AUGUST, 2011

Apologies to those of you who logged in and saw odd things, wrong images, missing links etc over the past 24 hours. In the end it took some time iron out all the kinks after the havoc caused by those weird terrorist hackers. It’s all sorted now! Last night was intense. I had a ten hour writing session on the Panto 2012 which ended in the early hours of the morning. Loads of great original ideas and a strong structure emerging. These discussions will continue soon and we hope to have a script by early next year. In fact the way we’re going we’ll probably have …

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HACK HOLIDAY MONDAY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 29 August, 2011

Today we were hacked – hence not posting a blog. Read about it on tomorrow’s blog…

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PPE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 15 August, 2011

Scaffolding has been erected to the inside of the building and also to the facade. The drainage for the toilets at lower ground floor level has almost been completed. The substation now has clear dates for installation and the steels are with the fabricators. We’re in PPE mode now (Personal Protection Equipment) – meaning that hard hats, steel toe capped boots and high vis jackets need to be worn at all times on site. Time to order a supply of appropriate footwear and additional hard hats for potential visitors – and to get the camera out again before too much more happ…

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NEW LOOK

by Jez Bond

Monday, 8 August, 2011

By Friday the scaffolding will be up on the front of the building. On Monday the hoarding will be erected and painted. Next week the facade will look decidedly different. On Tuesday more demolition will take place inside and things will kick up a gear. We had a good meeting on site with one of our contractors and they should be providing us with a date for the steel arrival within the next 24 hours. Meanwhile we’re still looking at logos and chatting with Feast about ideas for the new brand. It would be a dream to get the new images on the hoarding, but then of course we mustn&rsqu…

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BUSINESS PLANNING

by Jez Bond

Monday, 1 August, 2011

Hours and hours spent in Excel – not literally in excel, I’m not trapped inside the computer…. but it feels a little like it. On Excel…? With Excel…. Oh dear, so tired. When you look at figures for too long you start to question yourself. Why is that not adding up? Did I add National Insurance? Did I make that same mistake on everything I did for the last few hours….? No. You’re tired. Go to bed. And so…. Good Night!

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THE RECIPE FOR DRAMA

by Jez Bond

Monday, 25 July, 2011

Another week of theatre every night begins… This evening I headed to the studio at Hampstead Theatre to see Pentabus’ ‘For Once’ which was a well staged powerful drama about the fractured relationship between three characters – mother, father and son. There’s no perfect recipe for drama but there are a few favourites. Many will have heard me say that I love a piece of theatre that can make you laugh and make you cry – and that if it can do both in the same evening that’s great. Well, whilst tonight didn’t make me well up, it was a ve…

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PREPARING FOR THE SHOW-DOWN

by Jez Bond

Monday, 18 July, 2011

Lots of meetings on site including interesting discussions with a literary agent and, in a different meeting, a playwright. With our licensing committee hearing tomorrow however, the focus of the late afternoon has been on research and meetings with other neighbouring bars and shops. Tonight we need to work on our speech, making sure that we cover all the vital points and are ready to tackle any questions. Tomorrow’s blog will tell a tale, I’m hopeful that it will be a good one – but then let’s not count our chickens until they’ve hatched!

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SHOWS SHOWS SHOWS

by Jez Bond

Monday, 11 July, 2011

The most common question people ask is ‘What’s your first show going to be?’ Well I’m excited to announce that it will be…………………………………………………. ……………………………………………………………………………………………&hel…

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BRANDING/FUNDRAISING

by Jez Bond

Monday, 4 July, 2011

A very busy Monday today with full on meetings back to back throughout the day meant I ate very little but yet the mental feast was full on. And yes we met with some great people – leaving us the very difficult task of choosing people to help with our branding and fundraising (of course not the same people to do both jobs – that could be madness!). Both of these key needed roles are so close to being filled now…. [Melli Bond, Associate Director]

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THE HEAT IS ON

by Jez Bond

Monday, 27 June, 2011

Sweltering in the heat as I journey what should be twenty minutes across town. It takes almost half an hour of walking just to find a cab and then it’s another half an hour driving in it – a closed bridge, fallen scaffolding in the road and an accident all in one area are not a good accompaniment to the usual London traffic in South London during Wimbledon fortnight. Back at home the tennis plays in the background. Murray goes through and the Williams Sisters are both defeated. It must be burning hot on court but of course the players are used to playing all around…

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TURKEY, DAY 1

by Jez Bond

Monday, 20 June, 2011

Sarah Rutherford, our writer in residence, has been developing a play inspired by some of the stories of Finsbury Park residents. Under the project title ‘N4 Stories’, she has been working with a group of (predominantly) local actors, interviewing people from the N4 area over the past four months. The actors have then brought these real characters and stories to life inside the rehearsal room where they have been hot-seated by Sarah and put into groups in order to improvise scenes. As Sarah herself explains, below, through her research she now finds herself in Turk…

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SPEECHES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 13 June, 2011

This weekend I gave a presentation to the North London Equity branch. They were extremely enthused about the project and the room was buzzing with questions. I stayed during the course of their ten minutes break (before ‘other business’)  in order to speak to a number of people one-on-one. We are planning to arrange an Equity branch tour for the members, who were very keen to look around. It was an utter joy to talk in front of the members and I received the warmest of hands. On the way home they played Ave Maria from the bus. “Is this a new thing they d…

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THE HANGOVER

by Jez Bond

Monday, 6 June, 2011

No it’s not a blog about getting drunk and feeling bad the next day – that’s a very rare occurrence here, too much work to do… This weekend Melli and I attended a beautiful wedding in a peaceful woodland setting in Pennsylvania. Yesterday we had a post wedding BBQ with some close friends and family and today we went, with the bride and groom, to see a film about a wedding that had rather a rockier start – The Hangover 2. Very funny indeed! Congratulations Jim and Tara…!

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BROADWAY PART ONE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 31 May, 2011

Our trip to the USA involves two days in New York – specifically to meet theatre companies, writers, literary managers, agents and, of course, see some shows. It was a hot day today – though a little cooler than the 94 degrees it had been yesterday and we drove into the city, parked the car and checked into our hotel on the next block. We had a meeting with Rafael, the literary manager of The Soho Rep – one of NY’s only dedicated new writing theatres. Rafael is a very interesting and knowledgeable guy who has lived and worked in London for seven years &…

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NEW YORK HERE WE COME...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 30 May, 2011

It’s nearly midnight in the UK, but just early evening here in the USA. Off to New York tomorrow. Very busy working today and writing my speech for the Theatres Trust Conference. Need to finish it, sort out some emails, read a lot of plays etc while we are out here. This is just  a quick email to keep in touch with all our followers back home. Will report more from the Big Apple…

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CONCRETE JUNGLE...

by Jez Bond

Friday, 27 May, 2011

…that dreams are made of. New York here we come…. and Philadelphia…. and Bear, Delaware…. nearly midnight. not yet packed. not finished emails. off to teach at 7.30am tomorrow and then heading straight to the airport from there – armed with laptops. much work to do….

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THIS COULD BE THE BEST YEAR...

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 26 May, 2011

After a long day yesterday, Melli and I headed out for a meal (before returning to a couple of hours more work) for my birthday. At each major turning point – birthdays, 1st of January etc – we like to look to the year ahead and to predict what’s in store. The twelve months ahead of us now could easily be the best year yet. In May 2012 we’ll be in the building. I can’t think of anything more exciting! Today we submitted the licence application to the council (and other relevant authorities). The notice will also appear in tomorrow’s Islingto…

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THIS COULD BE THE BEST YEAR...

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 26 May, 2011

After a long day yesterday, Melli and I headed out for a meal (before returning to a couple of hours more work) for my birthday. At each major turning point – birthdays, 1st of January etc – we like to look to the year ahead and to predict what’s in store. The twelve months ahead of us now could easily be the best year yet. In May 2012 we’ll be in the building. I can’t think of anything more exciting! Today we submitted the licence application to the council (and other relevant authorities). The notice will also appear in tomorrow’s Islingto…

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VAST

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 25 May, 2011

Just three days and we’ll be in the USA. Suddenly things are rushing ahead even more than before. Each day closer to that start on site date. It must sound to many like it’s never going to happen, like we’re always ‘about to start’ but in truth only really Jordan and I, who are working on this every single day, can really appreciate how every day brings us closer and closer. When I started this project I had no idea how vast it was. I remember writing an early blog about when we first started the project. It wouldn’t be stretching the truth to say that…

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UPDATED AND ADVANCING

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 24 May, 2011

Website updated. That’s better. It’s been great to do as it has really made me focus on what’s important to us at The Park. I had researched the history of theatres in Finsbury Park many moons ago and it was fascinating to revisit that and to write up a short account. Very excited that we are bringing theatre back to Finsbury Park for the first time in over fifty years! Meanwhile on site Jordan has been knocking contractors down further on price, and we are getting ever closer to the budget. Slight pressure (not a bad thing) now of the window of summer &ndash…

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THINGS THAT BREAK

by Jez Bond

Monday, 23 May, 2011

It’s been a bit of a crazy few days, with things going wrong in and around the home – plus a few careless mistakes due to over tiredness and stress. At one point last night (yes a very hectic weekend as usual) I felt as though I shouldn’t hold a sharp knife for fear that something bad would happen. Yes – tiredness. So things that break include… well, me, I suppose. Note to self: take a rest. The fridge freezer is not looking healthy – the fridge is distinctly mild and, most likely (as the freezer works perfectly) we’ll have to replace…

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A LITTLE INSIGHT INTO LOTS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 20 May, 2011

Starting with 7am emails and document editing on the laptop before heading in to site. First meeting regarding funding, second regarding box office systems. Talking on the tube to a substation contractor on route and emailing Leon (in Barcelona) to arrange our next phone meeting to discuss the latest draft of the musical. Writing blog early as grabbing any available minute. Need to make a call about Saturday and another about the upcoming festival (to arrange costumes). Plus about three things that I have written down as i knew I would forget. Need to speak to Homes For Islington today b…

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BRIAN OVERLOAD

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 19 May, 2011

Argh… I seriously don’t have enough hours in the day and my head is about to explode. I have been talking to Melli for the last half an hour – as we have been travelling back from the theatre (Southwark Playhouse tonight for a strong production from the New Actors Company) – but we still haven’t started talking about the massive things we need to talk about, there’s just so much happening. So this has been a very quick blog while Melli responds now to an email about one of our upcoming meetings in New York. Done. Right…. PS: Yes it&r…

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SILENCE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 18 May, 2011

It’s pouring down with rain – and not only does the usual hole in the lower roof sprout water but puddles are also appearing in the upper floor below where we recently removed the water tank. Either we inadvertently ripped or damaged the membrane in the process or, possibly, the roofing top layers may have been installed around a pre-existing tank and we may have simply exposed the untreated roof below. It’s odd, and somehow amusing, to have something like this happen and it not be a problem - the reason being that it’s all getting ripped out soon anyway. Besides …

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THEATRE FOR DINNER

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 17 May, 2011

I’m out to the theatre every night this week. Tonight I’m seeing the new sell-out ‘London Road’ by Alecky Blythe. Tomorrow we’re at Hampstead for Filter’s new show – which I have been eagerly awaiting since seeing Water at the Tricycle. Then on Thursday it’s over to Southwark Playhouse for some Priestley in the vaults followed by a trip down to Brighton for Hydrocracker’s critically acclaimed take on Pinter on Friday. Hungry now, as come straight away from meeting after meeting. Perhaps there’ll be time to grab a snac…

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TOURS ARE BOOKING WELL...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 16 May, 2011

Four slots on offer and, all in all, about thirty people booked for the site tours now. Looking forward to showing people round and sharing our exciting plans. Aside from the mailing list I posted on some local online forums  - if I’ve left anything obvious out then I hope that someone will let me know. Big meeting about all the tenders tomorrow. (Ate far too much cheese today)

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FINGS AIN\'T WHAT THEY USED TO BE

by Jez Bond

Friday, 13 May, 2011

Today ended with Phil Wilmott’s production of Lionel Bart’s lesser performed Fings Ain’t What They Used To Be. Whilst it is clear why it rarely graces our stages – Charles Dickens wasn’t involved in the script for this one – it was an enjoyable night. An ensemble played the characters with panache, directed and designed smoothly by Wilmott and his team in the intimate setting of the Union Theatre.

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THE CORE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 12 May, 2011

As we analyse and refine our mission and objectives and finesse the wording, we distill things to their upmost honest core. What stands out – as soon you will see – is a commitment to drawing in new audiences (not exclusively young, but much of our education programme will lie there) and to nurturing that community. Earlier today we met with a company to go through their tender return and to knock down some sums. Just like working on our mission statement, this process of refining the budget, cost engineering and fine tooth combing is not a quick procedure – …

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WEBSITE REVAMPED

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 11 May, 2011

Well it’s not completed yet but the ‘architecture’ is now in place and over the next days the content will be updated – our refined mision and vision are on the way! Bearing in mind it’s still a slightly temporary website (we’ll get something brilliant purpose built a little further down the line!) I think it’s getting there…

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WHY DO I FEEL SO AT HOME...

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 10 May, 2011

…IN A WORLD OF MAKE BELIEVE? There’s nothing like being someone you’re not. It’s more than escapism, more than mimicry. When you inhabit a character, once the initial playing has subsided and the character has been sustained a true understanding of the portrayed individual starts to develop. It’s intense social commentary, it’s making decisions and judgements (whether right or wrong) and ultimately it’s accessing your brain to pull  from information that you never knew existed. It’s enlightening, it’s stimulating, it&…

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PEOPLE GET READY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 9 May, 2011

Massive day yesterday working with the trustees on the brand, the USP, refining the mission. Feel absolutely brilliant today, loads to do but have a very clear idea of the direction towards which we are aiming. Big changes in the air… Hope to be back with you before the end of the night to share one…. Here it is (just gone midnight, but nevermind) the updated (though not completed) website… more to follow…

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A DEAD HORSE AND A LOAD OF HEALTHY FOALS

by Jez Bond

MONDAY, 6 MAY, 2011

Okay so half of today has been spent flogging a dead horse. On one hand I am a realist but on the other there’s the little boy in me that believes in magic. Perhaps after multiple attempts at resuscitation, some major heart surgery, clinical trials of untested drugs, visits from witchdoctors, renegade doctors using advances in molecular technology and stem cell research, the horse may once more acquire a pulse. If not then at least I know I have exhausted all angles. On the flip side, the other half of the day has been extremely positive. We have made some excellent new …

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BAD ARCHITECTURE AND GOOD TICKETING

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 5 May, 2011

This morning we were given a brutally honest and thorough tour of RichMix – the venue where s few weeks back I had enjoyed Custom Practice’s production of Macbeth. It was, as ever, extremely useful to see. Venues both good and bad in terms of their architecture can teach us a great deal as we move forward with our design. RichMix is a great venue for multiple purpose use and I am sure that the general user experience is positive, however it is evident that the staff – who have to operate the building – have a great number of concerns about the way everything has b…

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ALICE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 4 May, 2011

I’m late, I’m late for a very important date. It has been this way all day. Book meetings in one after the other and if one overruns then the whole day goes askew. Book them with oodles of time apart and you end up with awkward gaps which doesn’t prove to be the best use of time – even with the ability to check emails and work on the laptop in between. Some more helpful advice just in regarding the ‘S’ word (that of which we do not speak). I feel like I need to emerge from the rabbit hole at some stage, with a theatre to show for it. Maybe not, maybe t…

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A LONG DAY\'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT

by Jez Bond

MONDAY, 3 MAY, 2011

For those of you who did not see Dave Hughes’ excellent blog post yesterday then check it out here. A blog post on a bank holiday Monday!? Yes it’s back to 24/7/365 here at the Park so keep up! This morning we finalised our latest newsletter, which I shall be sending out imminently. It includes some dates for your diary – tours of the site. If you don’t receive this by the end of the week you are either not on our mailing list or we have an incorrect email for you – in either case please let us know by sending us an email at: info at pa…

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EDUCATING RITA (WELL, DAVE HUGHES) PART 2...

by Jez Bond

Monday, 2 May, 2011

Following in my education programme, we’ve had enough of the high faluting West End, the RST, the glamour, the glitz – we wanted some ‘Fringe’. Something cutting edge, something real man! So, last week Jez and I went to the Network Theatre, under Waterloo Station to see Stockholm by Bryony Lavery – 2 actors, 60 minutes, no interval, very uncomfortable seats. The play was okay, really nice set design, good performances, nice lighting design, lots of f’ing and c words from the female character – gives it a bit of edge, shows we’re not mainstr…

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RETURNING TO PLACES FAMILIAR

by Jez Bond

Monday, 11 April, 2011

More tenders out today and a very supportive email from an Islington councillor assisting us with some ‘street’ issues – I refer to an older blog detailing the problems we have been facing with road markings and other street improvement plans. One month on but it looks as though we will finally get this still standing issue resolved. This evening I returned to a familiar venue as Martin and I attended the Southwark Playhouse for an very interesting adaptation of Louis De Bernieres’ ‘Sunday Morning at the Centre of the World’. On entering the…

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RICH DAY MIXED DAY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 4 April, 2011

A great meeting this morning with Jane and Oliver from RichMix who, after touring our site, proceeded to impart a great deal of knowledge regarding everything from toilet handles and cleaning contracts to digital film projectors and artistic programming – just the sort of conversations we love! I am looking forward to touring their 50,000+ sq ft building at the beginning of May – and to asking even more questions and, importantly, discussing potential ways in which to link – something that given our current state and the priority of upcoming building works we completely…

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CAT5 OR NOT CAT5

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 31 March, 2011

Cat5, Cat5a or Cat6e? That is the question. Which cable format do we install? It’s a question of cost versus futureproofability (bugger off Apple spellcheck, the Germans wouldn’t have any problem with that word!) As well as striving for quality and forward thinking approaches to all we do I am very conscious of not over spec’ing our building. We have to consider whether we are likely to ever require to do more than the lowest grade option can achieve. If the answer is yes we then have to ask ourselves whether by the time we do so the current infrastructure wo…

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ALMEIDA VISIT AND OTHER WONDROUS THINGS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 30 March, 2011

Meetings all day from 9am on site. Digital signage companies all seem to be saying different things, which is a real headache. Then Theo a freelance sound designer, who is very kindly designing our audio infrastructure with Orbital, had a look round and started chatting through the spec. Finally in the afternoon we visited some more venues. Our first stop was the new Caponata/Forge in Camden, a private scheme that combines a restaurant with a small performance venue, predominantly for live music. We then headed to Islington for the much anticipated tour of the Almei…

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N4 STORIES TEASER

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 29 March, 2011

This morning, following an interesting meeting with a couple of producers on site, I proceeded to Pooles Park Primary School, who for the past few months have very kindly been home to our N4 Stories workshops. Sarah, our writer in residence, had furiously worked for just two hours with a group of (now somewhat regular) actors to cobble together a mini ‘Best of N4 Stories’. I had seen a few hot seating sessions before and some improvised scenes and was eager to get a flavour of what promised to be a mixed platter. I was truly blown away by the work that had obviousl…

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A BREAK IN THE TREES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 28 March, 2011

It has been a hectic weekend and for the past few days I have been up at 7am and to bed at 2am. With the tender process ongoing and the vast amount of work needing to be done in developing the brand, the USP and the fundraising initiatives there has been little time for fun and frolics. Only today after days of furiously beavering away – and only enjoying the beautiful sunshine on walks to meetings – was I able to see a way out. Suddenly there appeared a break in the trees ahead, a glimmer of sunlight teasing its way through the branches. Beyond that no respite, bu…

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SUBSTATION SAGA ENDS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 25 March, 2011

I can’t really call it good news, or can I? I am loathe to call any news regarding the electrical kit we require to be ‘good’ but, being resigned to having the installation, I should rejoice in any small help. Edf today confirmed that the additional capacity on the high voltage network is available and that they would not increase their costs for the extra loading. This means that we will able to heat the flats electrically, which is more sustainable and very efficient and comfortable (under-floor throughout). It also means that we do not have to deal with an…

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DIGITAL MEDIA AND MORE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 24 March, 2011

This afternoon I met with David, the head of digital media at the Royal Opera House. He had very kindly spec’d all our digital media requirements, sent out a tender to ten companies and liaised with them regarding their quotes. As ever with the build, there is quite a range; from £28k to £62k. We have shortlisted three and will invite the companies to undertake a site survey and demo their products next week. I also got back in touch with Tom from Orbital this morning. I have asked them to draw a schematic for the sound (show relay, paging, cans system etc) i…

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KNIGHTS OF THE ROUND TABLE

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 23 March, 2011

After a huge gap that followed our last meeting, we met with the trustees on site this evening for a board meeting. As we are currently going out to tender and the start on site date is looming (pencilled in as May 1st) we suddenly have loads to arrange. Refining the mission statement and the USP are high on the list as is the creation and implementation of fundraising initiatives. Previously, this morning, Jordan and I finished checking the room data sheets. We now have a number of questions to ask the various consultants (mainly HJF, but also our fire and acoustic consultant…

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RETURN OF THE RDS

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 22 March, 2011

Months on and those room data sheets are calling once more! Our project manager, Jordan, came over to the house at 6pm and has just left now at 2.30am. We have been through the sheets comparing them with the architects’ plans, the structural schematic, the mechanical and electrical schematic and the specialist lighting schematic. As tiny things have changed over the past few weeks, we need to ensure that every little thing is picked up on and that all the drawings match. We are getting there – just the lower ground floor to do. We are all set to continue in the mor…

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THE BOND LEGACY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 21 March, 2011

This weekend I travelled, with my family, to The Wirral for my grandmother’s memorial service in the picturesque church of beautiful Caldy. This was the village where in 1958 she risked everything, took out a loan and bought Avalon – a school which, over the following three decades she turned into one of the most successful girls schools in the region. It made me very proud this weekend when I met many of the so called ‘Bond Girls’ – ladies, now in their late 30s, 40s and 50s, who my grandmother helped to shape at a crucial stage of their lives. T…

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THE BIG 200

by Jez Bond

Friday, 18 March, 2011

We have been writing the daily blog for so long now that last night I wrote the 200th entry. How many more until we open, I wonder? As we hope to be producing the inaugural show in less than a year, perhaps we’ll be on blog number 400 or so… It has certainly been a great record of all our achievements to date. Have a little look back at a few random days over the past few months – it’s interesting to see just how varied and complex the journey has been to date.

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THE DANE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 17 March, 2011

This evening Melli and I headed to Brixton to see a lovely couple who had adopted one of the gorgeous Great Danes we fostered. It was fantastic to see the big guy so happy in his new forever home – and to chat the night away with Claire and Darren, who kindly cooked us a delicious meal. We’ve fostered a number now and they asked if we would ever adopt. It’s an interesting question as we have recently been discussing this. We have a dog of our own, a mastiff cross who is used to the comings and goings of visors to the house, and once the theatre is open the plan is to ad…

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THE IMPORTANT AND THE TIME CONSUMING

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 16 March, 2011

A good meeting this afternoon with project manager Jordan Russell. We went through the program of works and the schedule for the next two weeks. All the tenders should be back three weeks from now and we will very soon have an official ‘start on site’ date! Very exciting. In the meantime we are continuing to struggle with the utility companies – what is it with these people!? As is the EDF fiasco with the substation wasn’t enough! (Still ongoing by the way). I finally managed to get British Gas Business to remove the (approximately) £20…

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THE WRONG KIND OF HEROIN

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 15 March, 2011

I tackled the licensing application today and nearly finished the first draft. The hardest part is succinctly putting in to words how we are addressing various issues ranging from crime prevention to the protection of children. Whilst one would hope that some things would be obvious from the nature of the type of building we will be – a theatre not a nightclub – I did have a conversation with a design officer from the police last year who seemed to think we needed to implement measures to stop the public from jacking up in the auditorium; making sure that the design of the se…

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NYC CONNECT

by Jez Bond

Monday, 14 March, 2011

Today we met with Kids With Guns – an exciting new writing company from New York.  Like the majority of theatre companies both here in London and across the pond, they don’t have a permanent base but produce shows at a number of venues. In most recent years they have established a good relationship with E59 Theatre (the home of the yearly Brits off Broadway season). We showed them the plans, gave them a tour of the building and chatted away about our aims and objectives. They are certainly interested in the possibility of bringing a show over here, and we spoke about loo…

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CIRCUS SPACE

by Jez Bond

Friday, 11 March, 2011

We had a lovely tour of Circus Space yesterday. It is London’s only training and rehearsal grounds for circus performers – and it’s really quite stunning. I had some experience of the venue a few years ago when a friend of mine who is an aerialist brought me along to watch her training on the silks in order to get a feel for the technique – which I employed in a Christmas show (and later, with the same actress, in a family show that toured Switzerland). What I hadn’t realised then was how big the building was. It used to be a Victorian power stati…

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FREAKY GIRL IN FINSBURY PARK

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 10 March, 2011

How many people can fit in a double decker bus? We see the number written in there every time we travel but we can never remember it if someone asks us. Well, believe it or not, this is the reason I seemed like the new freak of Finsbury Park today! Doing research on the buses that pass outside of the Park Theatre and the number of people that travel within them, I had to figure out the number of people that fit in a double decker bus. But this information doesn’t seem to exist on the internet! So the easiest way was to go to the bus station at Finsbury Park and see… And that…

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THE HISTORY OF BUILDINGS

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 9 March, 2011

I find history fascinating. People who follow this blog have will have read more than once about the feeling of an energy in a space and how I believe that the things we do in this world fly out and attach themselves to people, buildings, air… As such the history of a building, what took place inside its walls, is so interesting. Earlier today I was kindly given an extremely insightful pdf by Mark Foley of Burrell Foley Fischer, who have been the architects of the Almeida since its inception as a theatre space. Within the context of their latest (and beautiful) redevelo…

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THE RED SHOES

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 8 March, 2011

We have just returned from the BAC where we saw The Red Shoes. This was the fifth (possibly sixth) production we have seen by Kneehigh and they continue to be innovative and engaging in their telling of tales. Whilst this play worked very well on the aesthetic level – with its distinct style – it was less powerful than previous works of theirs on the actual narrative. However it did work on a thematic and metaphorical level and certainly wasn’t a triumph of style over content. This is all starting to sound too much like a pretentious late night review show…. over…

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MR FRY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 7 March, 2011

I got a personal response today from Stephen Fry. He wrote me a lovely email and explained that (as we half guessed) he was extremely oversubscribed with meetings, openings, functions, official roles on theatre, charities etc that he doesn’t feel that he would have the time to commit to The Park Theatre. It’s an honest response that I truly appreciate. I did make it explicit in my email to him that we were looking for people to take an active role and not for any ‘names on a piece of paper’. Indeed a recent advice session with a fundraiser also concurred, suggesti…

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IN THE WORDS OF ROBERT FROST

by Jez Bond

Friday, 4 March, 2011

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth; Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim Because it was grassy and wanted wear, Though as for that the passing there Had worn them really about the same, And both that morning equally lay In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I marked the first for another day! Yet kn…

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MAINTAINING THAT ELEVEN

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 3 March, 2011

I always used to wonder why an A in some exams was only 84% and why you could often get 50% and still pass. The truth is that attaining 100% is very difficult, and, as I have discovered, maintaining it is even harder still. I am acutely aware that my energy level – which is the radiator of my passion, my enthusiasm and my confidence – must never falter. Positivity is the key to success and the energy one puts out into the world is absorbed by those around. As such I endeavour to personify the dial on the Spinal Tap guitar player’s amp – “this one …

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THE DUNCAN TRILOGY

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 2 March, 2011

A good couple of meetings on site today. We met first with Jill Barton, who is a governor of IAMS (Islington Arts and Media School not the cat food). They already have very good links with the Almeida (where Jill is on the board) but are very keen to explore partnership potentials with us, their most local theatre. Melli and I chatted about our plans and we discussed various ideas together. I hope to give a presentation to IAMS’ governors sometime over the summer. Afterwards we met Sheila Duncan, a playwright friend of ours. She was telling us about what we jokingly call…

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THE EXCEPTION THAT PROVES THE RULE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 1 March, 2011

It’s tomorrow. Yesterday, for the first time, I didn’t write my blog. So here it is – backdated. I’m still here. A sign of something? Tiredness, stress, busyness? Perhaps a little of all of the above and more. A few hours until the next blog. Mustn’t slip up again!

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MOVING

by Jez Bond

Monday, 28 February, 2011

The decision to move my edit studio from Hersham to our flat was not a quick one but in the end it was an easy one. It means we loose our spare bedroom but it also means that I don’t need to travel what can often be a three hour round trip on public transport in order to get to the kit. This way I can keep working on some paid editing jobs and subsidise my work on the theatre.

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MUCH ADO ABOUT SOMETHING

by Jez Bond

Monday, 21 February, 2011

Dave and I are returning from rainy Suffolk, where we have spent a fantastic half day at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds. On arrival in this rather ghostly quiet and picturesque town we were greeted by Abi, the theatre’s associate director, who had kindly arranged our visit. She was accompanied by Ian, a delightful volunteer tour guide, who had made a very special effort to come in on his day off and give us a private tour of the building. An expert on the recent restoration and on the fascinating history of the theatre, Ian answered our many questions with a huge dep…

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SOCRATES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 14 February, 2011

This morning we had a key meeting concerning VAT. Even our highly experienced accountant finds it a most confusing and complex topic. Having engaged in substantial conversations on the subject over the past year and having been to see a specialist VAT consultant almost eighteen months ago, we felt that some revision and clarification on various points would be most useful. However rather than returning to the man we saw previously we decided to find someone who was more able to communicate in a language that we could understand – someone who might perhaps answ…

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A HELPING HAND FROM THE NT AND ROH

by Jez Bond

Monday, 7 February, 2011

Editing all day. Just about time to check the various emails in the breaks. Working on three video projects at the moment. Great to be earning some money for a change! Working on the theatre full time is the most exciting thing ever but I have to face the fact that bills need to be paid. Never before in the field of human labour, has so much been done for so little pay and yet so great reward. The weekend was hectic, as ever. I was very lucky to meet some extremely knowledgable and supportive local residents who work at the National and the Royal Opera House. They are helping …

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THEATRE DOG RECOVERS FROM GENERAL ANAESTHETIC

by Jez Bond

Monday, 31 January, 2011

Very sad news today for The Park Theatre’s resident-to-be doggie who was taken to the vet after a few weeks of discomfort and stiff back legs. Despite huge amounts of rest and some pills administered for a suspected cruciate ligament, things had not improved. Today a number of X Rays revealed that she had been born with hip dysplasia and that over her young life (she is only 3 years old) wear and tear had taken its toll on the knees causing arthritis. She is a Mastiff cross and these larger breeds can of course be prone to bone conditions, but at such a young age it was …

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AN HONEST DAY\'S WORK

by Jez Bond

Monday, 24 January, 2011

Hands dirty with paint, limbs sore from adjusting wrenches and tightening bolts, back aching from scrambling under decking, eyes tired from dust. 8pm and the set has been made safe for tomorrow’s first rehearsal of ‘Company’ in the space (Southwark Playhouse). Still some bits to do – the odd hand rail, some painting and dressing… but after an honest day’s manual labour it is coming together. As associate director my role is varied! Back to walk Hazel and then to have a bath (yeah right, never happens!) then to catch up with Park Theatre cor…

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A LAME AND RAINY MONDAY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 17 January, 2011

It was such a miserably wet day today. In the morning it rained for four hours non stop. The fields in the park were completely flooded and even the alley to the tube station was impossible to traverse without wellington boots. But it wasn’t monday itself that was lame. In fact it was quite productive on the ‘Company’ front – we made some great headway with the set, albeit resolving issues that should have been done months ago. Shame we didn’t get as far with our electrical issues for The Park – nothing yet resolved, though information is be…

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BORN TO RUN

by Jez Bond

Monday, 10 January, 2011

This evening we cooked dinner for Brenda, Graham and Kylie Gottsche. Brenda is a playwright whose plays I have directed over the years. We’ve all become such good friends that we went to stay with the family (who spend their time between Australia and the UK) in Sydney a few years ago – and they were the most wonderfully kind hosts. Five hours of food and drink and chatting furiously away and the night has just ended. Graham told me about their recent safari to Mozambique and alluded to an interesting story about the hunters in Africa who could outrun antelope. App…

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2011 - THE YEAR OF THE BUILD

by Jez Bond

Monday, 3 January, 2011

Usually in the first week of January the new year particularly jars when one writes the date. Today, however, it seems quite natural. I suppose it’s a result of all our forward planning. In my mind I’ve already plotted the first half of 2012. As avid readers can tell from my lack of online activity since Dec 22nd I did indeed manage to have a few days entirely off and, full of turkey and mince pies, refrained from sneaking on to the computer. Today it’s bank holiday Monday and I am certainly not missing the crowds on the underground – a perfe…

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CLOSING DOWN...

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 22 December, 2010

I’d usually be grumbling about how people close for Christmas – okay not actually the Christmas day part (I’m not Scrooge) but for such an extended period of time during the holiday season – however due to my aching head and tight chest I am content to take my antibiotics and deal with fewer incoming emails. Most companies start back on the 4th Jan. We will resume warp speed at that point. A December update: Lots of exciting meetings arranged for Jan/Feb Banner to be displayed on site mid Jan Party wall awards beng issued and …

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IT\'S GOING TO BE A GREAT YEAR...

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 21 December, 2010

2011. This is going to be a great year. Already got some exciting meetings planned – some arranged and to be firmed up. Two with funders. One with our first local celebrity. One with the arts council. One with the artistic director of the RSC. Things are going to happen. North London watch this space! The banner has now been designed. With Christmas looming it’s likely to be early January before it gets printed. On site soon! Short blog today. Been working from bed mostly. Damn chest infection. Here’s to health, happiness and success in 2011!

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EXPANDING

by Jez Bond

Monday, 20 December, 2010

I was on the phone earlier with a company interested in working in the space. I decided to use the phone to have a few such chats recently as an email can lack tone and passion -plus by the time you’ve crafted it, re-read it and checked it over for grammatical error’s (intentional, I hate that!) you may as well have had a friendly dialogue! It’s interesting to note that there are now ten theatre companies who have already come to us with enquiries. Christina is currently compiling a list of other companies that we can approach in order to spread the word near…

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AND SO IT ENDS...

by Jez Bond

Sunday, 19 December, 2010

07.53 Bed

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SEASON\'S GREETINGS

by Jez Bond

Friday, 17 December, 2010

A dry day as I turned to my laptop to write a few emails. When I turned back round there was snow all around. Well not all around, but all over the garden at any rate. It goes to show two things. Firstly how easy it is to lose one’s sense of time whilst beavering away at the computer and, secondly, how quickly the weather turns. I completely missed the snow fall! Melli worked on a few handwritten Christmas cards and presents to send to our relatives abroad and I finalised and uploaded our Park Theatre Christmas newsletter which all our extended friends and family should …

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THE DAY THAT DUBS LEFT

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 16 December, 2010

A hectic day today starting at 8am with a clear up of the house and a walk of the dogs before the engineer from TalkTalk came to tell us that there was a fault on the line and they would need to refer the problem to BT (our frustrating intermittent internet connection problem still exists after four weeks of trying to get it resolved). Then T-Dubs’ owner came to pick him up. Apparently he’s called Chet. Ummm… Our name’s better! Bye bye Dubs, we’ve had quite an adventure and you’ll be missed! That was all pre 11am! A meeting to ge…

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EDUCATING RITA (WELL, DAVE HUGHES)...

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 16 December, 2010

I’ve written before that prior to starting work on The Park I was not a regular theatre goer, so as part of my continuing education and broadening of my horizons I am going to as wide a variety of theatre ‘types’ as possible – both for venue tours and to see productions. It’s been great that so many people, both friends and acquaintances of Jez’s and friends of friends, have taken some time out to show us around various theatres and spaces and answer our questions. Over the last year we have visited and been shown around: The National (parti…

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T-DUB

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 15 December, 2010

Following from yesterday’s adventures we returned home with our beautiful lost boy – a large black staffie cross. An actor from Transmission Workshop decided he should be called T-DUB, as in TW, and thus his journey began… We immediately followed the customary process we engage in with all four legged visitors to the house (having fostered Great Danes it’s all second nature now). Beginning outdoors with an introduction to the pack – a walk-by and then sniff of our very own mastiff cross, Hazel – we then proceeded indoors for a wash down; ge…

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MUM\'S THE WORD!

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 14 December, 2010

It’s so ridiculously exciting that I can hardly believe it. The most part of me wants to shout it out to the world, proclaim it from the rooftops and send it to the press. A small part of me however is desperately trying to keep that other part quiet. With most good ideas there are always other people out there who have the same plan. However I think that in this case that may not be true (I am truly original dahling!) and I can’t risk letting the cat out of the bag. Why? Creativity is about sharing ideas, surely!? Well, I suppose it’s my business side at work. It&rsquo…

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FIRE AND RAIN

by Jez Bond

Friday, 10 December, 2010

Just listening to the fabulous James Taylor and Carole King – highly recommended. I’ve seen fire and I’ve seen rain. Yep, that’s the theatre alright. We’ve got it all! Started out in the morning meeting with Vinod, who owns the property next to us and is interested in looking at options whereby (if we raise additional capital now or down the line) we could purchase a portion of his building to use as a dedicated rehearsal room. Dave measured up and we just need to do the maths (or do the math as they say in the States). Melli, Dave and …

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CHRISTMAS APPROACHES

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 9 December, 2010

As Nouska, Christina, Melli and I all met at London Bridge this chilly morning we remarked on how it was the first time that all four of us had been together. As Christina and Nouska work for us two days a week, the days had never previously collided. It was great to spend the day as one organism! We headed straight to a meeting with the Independent Theatre Council this morning. This was a useful hour, we shared our plans with them and they explained the benefits of membership to the ITC – which includes legal advice, business/accounting support and a host of reduced rat…

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BIG BAD DOM (BAD AS IN \'COOL\')

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 8 December, 2010

The first port of call today was Hoare Lea. Situated in the impressive location of Tottenham Court Road, Hoare Lea are one of the top lighting designers in the country. In the field of theatre, they have worked on some major venues producing stunning results. Their work on the Victoria Apollo theatre can be seen on the image I have posted here.   As mentioned previously, Dom, one of the partners, is helping us out massively. I just adore him. He has the most passionate high-energy fast talking way about him. Every time you meet him you feel like you need a para…

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MORE DATA

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 7 December, 2010

A meeting with Maurice and Ellis (owners of the London Fashion Centre) this morning proved fruitful. They are extremely helpful and very supportive of the project. We discussed the programme of work, the party wall awards (they are our neighbour at the back) and, due to their fantastic energy and enthusiasm, some other interesting ideas they had. I then met on site with Dave’s colleague Martin who will begin work on the detailed internal design of the building in January and had a wonderful vision for how the atrium space, with surrounding corridors and stairwells, will …

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LIGHTS ON THE TREE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 6 December, 2010

A day editing on my big Mac with my trusty Final Cut Pro suite. I’m always thinking about the theatre – and responding to emails and phone calls throughout the day – but it’s probably a good idea to do something unrelated once in a while, lest I go mad! Also on the plus side it keeps a different type of creative juice flowing and, importantly, it earns a few quid. Perhaps we’ll have a goose this Christmas after all! Just returned home and put the lights on the tree. Ah…. time for the Christmas tunes. Good job I catalogued all our personal C…

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S\'NO PROBLEM

by Jez Bond

Friday, 3 December, 2010

Despite the freezing temps and snow fall… The Park Theatre continues its development at full pace. The snow hasn’t stopped the flurry of actors attending the N4 workshops (now in its second month) and the branding for the theatre is almost complete. It appears that The Park Theatre is already becoming known in the area; one of our actors remarked that she’d asked the way to ‘the theatre’ at the tube and had been immediately pointed in the right direction! Tonight’s schedule includes a visit to Notting Hill’s The Printroom theatre to c…

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EMPTY BUILDINGS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 2 December, 2010

What is it about empty buildings? We’ve all walked past countless facades, windows bricked or boarded up, sold signs hanging loose and we’ve returned month upon month year after year to see no change at all. I’ve even known one that we were outbid on by an incredibly eager buyer that has sat empty ever since the auction day some two years ago and counting. What happens in these cases? It’s such a mystery to me. Does the money dry up? Do people intentionally sit on them for years just to sell them on in a different market? Did they apply for planning and not get co…

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NOW IS THE WINTER OF MY DISCONTENT

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 2 December, 2010

Another snowy day and London grinds to a halt. The transport system slows down and everybody is late or, worse, unable to reach their destination. Christina’s flight to France from Stanstead is cancelled. Even our supermarket delivery is unable to be delivered. Didn’t exactly the same thing happen last year with all the same results? Won’t exact the same happen next? C’mon England! I don’t think we built an empire based on this lack of care and organisation. Anyhow, warm within our home, we had a productive day with Christina, achieving a multitud…

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A SNOWY TRIP TO STRATFORD

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 1 December, 2010

We’re in Dave’s trusty Volkswagen, driving through the snow on our way home from Stratford upon Avon. It was great to see Flip Tanner from the RSC again and talk about the possibility of getting some bits and bobs from the old theatre for the Park. Many congratulations to Flip who, after a long stint at the RSC, is now off to head up the UK division of theatre consultants Fischer Dachs (or Basement Jacks as Dave likes to call them). It was really nice to tour round again, having been a few months ago when it was still a building site, and to see it all finished with people mi…

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HATE TO CANCEL

by Jez Bond

Monday, 29 November, 2010

Argh! I hate to cancel meetings. Was due for a meet at the M & E engineers this morning, followed by a meeting at HJF. Last time there was a tube strike I walked in. However today I am recovering from a horrible weekend of sinusitis. I’ve had it once before and it’s really not pleasant. When people say their head feels like it’s in a vice… yep, I get that. I blatantly developed this because I pretended I wasn’t ill for the last two weeks and my body had enough. I have therefore been a (relatively) good boy for the past few days. Okay well today’s …

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SHAKING THE SENSES

by Jez Bond

Friday, 26 November, 2010

After purchasing a different router this morning and finally sorting out our internet connection (no thanks to TalkTalk) we proceeded to the Comedy Theatre which, as Dave pointed out, is not perhaps the most aptly named venue for the current show. It was the understudy run of ‘Birdsong’, a production we had seen a few weeks ago. Our good friend Annabel Topham was superb in the female lead among a marvellous cast. From the subtler moments between characters to the vibration of the entire auditorium with the horror of gunfire, like the first time we saw it, this was powerful st…

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GREEK THEATRE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 25 November, 2010

Working as an assistant for the artistic director of Park theatre is a new and very exciting experience for me. It is so interesting to see the whole process of how you can transform a building to a contemporary theatre venue and how you can bring such a big dream to a realisation. I couldn’t imagine how many things you need to organise to do before you open a theatre. Working by Jez’s side i meet the design team as well as people that work for promotional companies, i do the archive for some important documents for the theatre and i help generally in the organization of Jez&…

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LIGHTS, CAMERA, ACTION

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 24 November, 2010

This morning I met with Sacha Corcoran, the lady who developed creative apprenticeships. This is a scheme adopted by educational institutions where, over the course of a twelve to eighteen month period, a student is placed within an arts organisation for four days a week and attends college one day a week. We discussed the scheme in detail and looked at how we might work together in the future – either next year, to engage a student in the pre-launch process, or for the following year when we take full possession of the building. Dave “I’m now a theatre exper…

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GREAT TITLE

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 23 November, 2010

I had a really good title for this blog earlier but so much has happened today my head is spinning and I have forgotten what it was! Jordan and I looked at contracts this morning and agreed that a JCT Construction Management process is the best way for our project. It does rely on a client / client representative that has a firm understanding of building. Jordan is confident that’s me – plus “you’re no mug” he said! In the late afternoon I met with Vinod the owner of number 10 Clifton Terrace (our direct neighbour) and – it transpired &ndash…

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PAPERWORK

by Jez Bond

Monday, 22 November, 2010

A day of forms… Filling in the form to instruct our party wall surveyor, filling in the form that the council sent us regarding changes to the on street parking provision at home, filling in an application for EDF energy to provide a new electricity supply on site and, last but not least, updating the room data sheets. The usual load of emails too of course. All dealt with from the comfort of my bed. Flu!

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BRANDING, FUNDING, FLASH, BUZZ, GO!

by Jez Bond

Friday, 19 November, 2010

We’ve got that end of the week fervour! Mini breakthroughs with our game of ‘flash the logo’. I recommend trying it at home kids. For example, draw a few pictures. Now, show the first pic to mum or dad and in a flash you take it away and show them the next one. You’ll get their honest opinion kids! Games aside, we’ve really been working all day – turning the lights brighter as the day goes on – and like the lights so is my optimism about our funding package. I think we have a “banging” project. That’s the w…

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STATS

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 18 November, 2010

Programmes from A – Abigail’s Party – through to D – Dying Of The Light (The) – have been catalogued into the system. Over 400. One storage box filled. Looking at the remaining piles, my estimate for the total is around 1,500. In terms of the number of programmes for different productions of the same play, first equal is currently held by Cherry Orchard (The), Comedy of Errors (The), Death Of A Salesman and Doll’s House (A) with four each. It’s disappointing to see that there are a lot of shows for which we are missing progr…

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COMPANY

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 17 November, 2010

It’s that time of the year when my immune system is attacked by fatigue, stress and the change in weather – although I wouldn’t admit to the first two. I’m well accustomed to this now, after years – my throat glands are always my Achilles’ heel. A few lemsips and ibuprofen can help to soothe but nothing cures apart from time. So on we go with much to do, neither the company nor the building will create themselves! Joules has firmed up the basis for the lighting rigs in both theatres, so Dave and Paul can now coordinate this within their arch…

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FAMILY FEELING

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 16 November, 2010

I’m pleased to report another great induction day for a new group of excellent actors. We have really got a talented lot. Lots of laughs were shared on our way towards more research for N4 Stories. I’ve been very lucky to find keen and talented actors able to accept this challenge. We are building a great team- what I hope will be a kind of family of actors. Melli Bond, Associate Director

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NON GLORY DAY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 15 November, 2010

Filing, emailing, typing up contacts, a day of lots done but nothing hugely exciting to show for it – well actually nothing even remotely exciting to show for it. There are plenty of days like this – but then also plenty others with glorious results to parade. Good news that the Arts Council have finally acknowledged our existence. Last time we wrote to them we received a rather cold response: “we are not interested into entering into discussions with you at this time”. The new administration seems to be more receptive, despite the current crisis. I did…

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AWAY

by Jez Bond

Friday, 12 November, 2010

Sitting in beautiful Henley on this grey rainy evening. Have been coordinating with Joules, Roger, Charles (from Hall Stage) and Dave regarding lighting rig positions. Next week we should have made the final decisions. Just a short one today as I’m officially on my weekend! More on Monday…

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TALKTALK

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 11 November, 2010

It’s not really talktalk though; more like silentsilent. It’s been 48 hours now without internet access and the lovely Lisa upstairs has just saved the day by giving me the code for her wireless router! Why do these companies have such bad customer service? Well one thing is for sure – we will have two different broadband lines at the theatre with two different companies. It’s a good lesson to learn. Our business – including all the ticket sales – will rely on an internet connection and I sure as hell don’t want to be phoning up a call centre in …

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SKYDECK IS THE WAY...

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 10 November, 2010

I have recently been trying to maximise my time by not arranging single meetings on a day; either booking in multiple meetings or working from home exclusively – it’s far more economical in terms of both time (due to travel) and finance. Today was a successful day full of meetings. Abi, who had assisted me previously had to stand down and the delightful Christina has taken over. Today was her first day as my assistant and I did warn her that it would be a bit of a baptism by fire! In the morning I showed her around the site at the same time as Katy, the …

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S.A.D.

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 9 November, 2010

Just two weeks ago I was preparing to write a blog on workaholism. I had calculated that over the past few months I have been averaging 75 hour weeks. Suddenly since the first of the month it seems that all the leaves have fallen from the trees, a chill has hit the air and darkness has descended. I now find myself in a very different place. It’s far easier to lie in for an extra hour than it is to jump right into the shower in the morning. It’s far easier to watch a film at 9pm than it is to carry on working. Positivity doesn’t come naturally in th…

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VOODOO HUSSY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 8 November, 2010

It’s a rainy Monday morning and we’re beavering away with emails and paperwork. I have never written my blog in the morning, it has always been a dead of night affair. However I wanted to use today’s column inches to write about the on site events of the weekend, so here goes: Late last week Jules Taylor, stage manager at the RSC, and I were supposed to be going for a meal to catch up (years ago we had worked together at Watford). It was the day of the tube strikes so I called her to suggest that we reschedule. Whilst on the phone – I was in …

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STRANGE DAYS [BY WRITER LEON PARRIS]

by Jez Bond

Friday, 5 November, 2010

It all began with a good, firm handshake followed by a feeling of familiarity and safety which manifested in an impromptu hug between two men who, until two days ago had never even met. The rest of it’s a blur. Hundreds of pieces of A6 paper cover the wall; each of them holding some nugget of hilarity or tragedy which, eighteen months from now, will grace the stage of the Park Theatre. It’s been a strange few days. We have reincarnated the devil (who it turns out does look like Monica Bellucci), we have torn heroes and heroins to shreds and reassembled them piece b…

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THE THREE ACT STRUCTURE

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 4 November, 2010

Leon and I have just completed a successful 15 hour writing session. Act 1 and 2 complete. Act 3 is halfway there. Though Leon’s Act 2 is my Act 2 (part 2) and Act 3. And my Act 1 is Leon’s Act 1 (part 1). It’s all very simple really, depending on the use of the two act or the three act structure. Of course almost every single play and film follow the three act structure (or the five – don’t get me started) but modern custom in theatre is to perform a full length play with one interval, thereby giving the illusion of two where indeed three exist… or f…

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WORKING ON A NEW MUSICAL

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 3 November, 2010

It’s the end of day one of a three day workshop of a new musical comedy. Award winning composer and lyricist Leon Parris – whose recent ‘Wolfboy’ played at the Trafalgar Studios – has come over from his home in Spain to work on the script. It’s always exciting for me to work with new writing, something I have done a lot over the years. Combining this with my love of music makes for a truly exciting process. After Leon’s hour long pitch of the new draft to Melli and me we sat down for a meal and discussed some notes over a glass of wine…

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TRANSMISSION

by Jez Bond

Monday, 1 November, 2010

This evening I headed over to the Rag Factory off Brick Lane for the inaugural session of Transmission – a new drop in workshop for actors. The group will meet on a weekly basis and the aspiration is to have its eventual home at the Park. As such I was invited to lead the first workshop. There were twelve actors present this evening – and I imagine that numbers will increase once word of mouth spreads and the group gets established. I chose to explore ‘the influence of style on content’ using various scenes from Shakespeare’s Hamlet as the text. W…

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FULL STEAM AHEAD FOR N4 STORIES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 1 November, 2010

Today was our first induction day for N4 Stories with our first group of actors. After spending lots of time in the admin process, we finally got to show a group of 18 around the theatre and bring them into our world. I enjoyed giving the tour of our building, it is never tiring or boring to talk about and here we were for the first time with our baby steps towards a production with actors in our building – guess what- they loved it! They were happy to hear all about it and to look around and visualise its transformation over the many months ahead. After our t…

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IMMERSED [WRITES NOUSKA]

by Jez Bond

Monday, 25 October, 2010

I thoroughly enjoyed my first week as assistant at the Park Theatre. After attending my first architects meeting, visiting the site and getting to grips with the projects, I now feel fully immersed in every aspect of the task ahead. One of my first tasks has been to write the press release for local and National press. I sent this out today and will eagerly await some interest for articles on the project. I’m hopeful that given the recent announcements of arts cuts, the news that people and organisations like ourselves are still moving forward regardless, will be met wit…

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FURNITURE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 18 October, 2010

After copious amounts of computing in the morning (sorting out new email accounts, updating some key documents and sending them to Nouska and Abi…)  I met director Gavin McAlinden on site. Gavin was excited to learn about our new venue and had some interesting ideas regarding European funding streams (note to self: follow this up). We agreed to meet for a drink in the near future. Lots to discuss. I then gave Nouska (Melli’s assistant) her first tour. Melli should have been in my place but as I was already in the area it seemed to make sense. As we went round…

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PLANNING PERMISSION GRANTED

by Jez Bond

Monday, 11 October, 2010

The wait is finally over. This morning we received the good news. Islington council have granted our planning permission. Due to the fact that there were so many letters and emails in support and that there were no objections, the decision was an officer delegated one. We had originally been told that, as a major application (more than 10,000 square feet) the decision would rest with the planning committee. Incidentally the session we were expecting to be at is tonight – so we are ahead of schedule by a few hours! Thanks to the Islington officers and councillors we have …

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SWEET CHARITY

by Jez Bond

Monday, 4 October, 2010

I’ve just returned from the Menier’s production of ‘Sweet Charity’ at the Haymarket Theatre. I’ve enjoyed many of their productions in the past – both straight plays and musicals, both transferred and at their venue. This seemed an odd choice however and almost entirely lacked a plot line in the first act, being simply an episodic journey that was unable to engage or hook one in. Therefore, despite a competent production and strong performances from Tamzin Outhwaite and the rest of the cast, it doesn’t rate highly amongst the many shows I have se…

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THE BAR

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 30 September, 2010

Great news today as local MP Jeremy Corbyn wrote a letter in strong support of the theatre to Islington Council. Our consent is due tomorrow and we will soon be submitting our licensing application. Mr Corbyn’s letter addresses some key points most notably the importance of our cafe bar to the viability of the business. Just heading home now from the Factory Theatre’s production ‘Boiling Frogs’ at the Southwark Playhouse. A very engaging and innovative piece of theatre and a company well worth keeping an eye on: www.factorytheatre.co.uk …

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THE MUSIC OF THE NIGHT

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 29 September, 2010

I’ve just finished rehearsing with my band The Wang Dang Doodles. It took two and half hours to get to the rehearsal studio from the edit suite but I finally made it. Having agreed to learn three new songs for our gig on Friday I was pleased to see that I wasn’t the only one who hadn’t the time to prepare them all. We got two down, so for our ardent fans there’ll be a couple of new tunes throughout the night: www.charlottestblues.co.uk Earlier in the day I spoke with Rory, our acoustic consultant. We are keen to look at the possibility of a timber roof …

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PASSION

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 28 September, 2010

A break in the day from all things theatrical as I headed down to my studio to begin a few days of editing. A few days here and there helps to keep me fed and clothed while I work on my passion for the rest of the week! In the evening I went to the Donmar Warehouse with Dave to see Sondheim’s musical about love and desire. A great production and always good to see a musical in an intimate space. Surprised to say that Lloyd Webber has more catchy tunes in ‘Love Never Dies’ than Sondheim does in ‘Passion’! I’m not one for Mamma Mia …

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LOVE NEVER DIES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 27 September, 2010

After dropping the keys round to Hardman Engineers (so that they could gain access to the site in order to investigate the recent expositions) I headed to Islington via Nincomsoup at Old Street Station. It brought back memories of rehearsing a show round the corner about ten years ago. A couple of the actors and I used to pick up a soup on the way in every morning. We loved that place and memories came flooding back. Every production is special for different reasons and that one taught me a lot about working on a new play. Next stop Islington, for a numbe…

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HAYFEVER

by Jez Bond

Friday, 24 September, 2010

After preparing a refined design brief for our logo, I attended to a much neglected task – that of budgeting and admin for N4 Stories. I completed the major part of this before we left for the theatre this evening. I now have a list of actors who speak Somali and Turkish, which may be useful for approaching some of the local migrant communities. I have also produced a first draft of a budget, with appropriate fees for script development and workshops. We will soon be in a position to seek funding for the project. Melli and I then ventured down to Ki…

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BRANDING

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 23 September, 2010

I looked at more logos today. Over the past few months we have arrived at a clear vision of what we want – something simple and not over-designed, something most likely text based and something versatile (i.e. that works just as well in black and white as in colour, and both in large and small formats). Of utmost importance is that the chosen design reflects our artistic vision. I am working on creating a new brief to ensure that the next set of designs incorporate these ideas and move us closer to our final logo.

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N4 ACTION

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 22 September, 2010

Melli Bond writes: A buzzing morning with writer in residence Sarah Rutherford and artistic director Jez Bond. As associate director I am excited to be engaging with N4 Stories as the project develops. So, all you actors who are interested in getting involved watch this space, I will soon be contacting you. Following such a successful New York trip I am enjoying getting stuck into the many new plays I have been passed and continued the process in the afternoon. After a full day of writing and reading I was delighted to see Jez’s model box of our stu…

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A MODEL STUDIO

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 21 September, 2010

The studio is now complete – although it’s only 1/33rd actual size. I added the finishing touches this evening with the addition of a ladder to access the technical gallery. With 90 seats, a generous rake, air conditioning, comfortable fixed seating and an array of technical delights including a show relay system it’s a model studio. Tomorrow I will begin to create an equally miniature set in order to place it in our studio to get a true idea of the sight lines, entrance and exit positions and stage size. I will re-create a set for a show I directed a few yea…

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A DAY IN THE THEATRE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 20 September, 2010

Starting on site this this morning, my first meeting was with Sharon Schaffer who formed and used to run successful theatre company Kaos. She was very interested in The Park Theatre and potential involvement and it was a pleasure to show her round. Dave Hughes had provided me with some great colour printouts so I was happy not to have to lug my laptop in on the tube. Returning home I resumed work on the model box of the studio (I had mentioned in Friday’s blog that our debate about seating was ongoing – this exercise has evolved from our discussions). La…

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MOVING ON UP

by Jez Bond

Friday, 17 September, 2010

This morning I had a very successful meeting with local MP Jeremy Corbyn. I proudly showed him the plans and 3D model shots before we toured the site. I was impressed that he wanted the meeting to take place at Clifton Terrace and not at his office. It indicated to me a real interest in what we are doing – rather than the superficial fulfillment of a duty. Indeed he was extremely positive about the project and very enthused. Like many others he shares the view that Finsbury Park is crying out for a new cultural centre and it’s a pleasure to have him in support of o…

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IN THE SPOTLIGHT

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 16 September, 2010

On my way to The Bush to see ‘Aliens’ with Dave Hughes: as in Dave is accompanying me, rather than appearing on stage. Having said that, our lead architect is becoming increasingly keen on the spotlight. “The criticism of architects” he told me last week “is that they have never been on stage themselves.” As such Dave is planning to tread the boards and walk into our Park Theatre spotlight to address the audience on our gala night. I would say that I’d be there in the wings ready to push him on, but something tells me he won’t ne…

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SCRIBD

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 15 September, 2010

It’s a strange name but a very useful website that allows you to upload documents for others to view and download. Due to our newsletters containing many photos, the resulting PDFs are rather large. As such, this method of communication is a happy alternative to clogging up people’s emails. Thanks Scribd! Check it out to view – and, if you so wish, download – our July newsletter, our ‘hot off the press’ September newsletter and much more to come… I have applied the link to the blog and the website and it’s right here …

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GLAMPING

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 14 September, 2010

I thought long and hard about whether or not to write my blog over the last few days – whether to blog from deepest darkest Wales or whether to stick strictly to blogging about the theatre and report on the goings on back in London. However it was whilst stoking the wood burning stove in our geodesic dome that I made the decision to sit back and enjoy the holiday – my one break this year. As such there will be a small gap in the diary calendar – and whilst in one way frustrating for my order obsessed mind, it is a true representation of a mini break in my jou…

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ALWAYS ON MY MIND

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 9 September, 2010

Eat, drink, sleep theatre. Sleep however being the most neglected at the moment. Sleep…

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TO FLIP OR NOT TO FLIP - THAT IS THE QUESTION...

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 8 September, 2010

It’s all about the seating. Following from our trip to Trafalgar Studios yesterday we continued our discussions on seating for the studio… We had always considered flexibility as important, but now it seems we may be changing our minds. The fact is – and this is a view shared among architects and theatre consultants alike – flexibility costs money. It costs in terms of initial capital expenditure (fixed tiers are far cheaper than reconfigurable steel/aluminium deck) and in terms of ongoing expenditure (considerable man power is required to reconfigure …

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12 HOURS IN THE CITY

by Jez Bond

Tuesday, 7 September, 2010

Leaving the house shortly after 9.30am this morning it took in excess of two hours to travel the usual 50 minutes to the borough of Islington. As the tube workers were on strike the buses, cars and taxis on the road were crammed with people and the traffic terrible… My meetings today were first at Chapel Market then at Finsbury Park then at Exmouth Market then at Trafalgar Studios then back to Islington. With the late summer sun beating down it was not the ideal day for it but, armed with my laptop and the plans in my rucksack and my wallet, keys, phone and pen in Hazel…

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A DAY OUT IN ISLINGTON

by Jez Bond

Monday, 6 September, 2010

It’s pouring with rain as I write this but earlier today as I trod the streets of Islington the sun was shining down on me. I first met with one of the local ward councillors. As he had visited the site before we met in the more comfortable council offices. My intention over the next two weeks is to speak the relevant members of the council – and by relevant I mean those that sit on the planning committee, the licensing committee or are an executive member. It is important for me to speak to councillors face to face in order to bring them up to date with the latest…

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LEAVING NEW YORK

by Jez Bond

Friday, 3 September, 2010

Day 4 - Today, from the comfort of my Delaware home, we discuss family and culture and so it happens I chat with Lynn Thompson, Artistic Director of America-in-Play about America’s historical cultural legacy. Having missed her in the city, we chat on the phone. We really connect and I feel very inspired with the work she’s doing with her dynamic dramaturgy group of New Yorkers. There is so much to be learned from our past and a question I’ve always been asked abroad is “What IS the American culture?” Just a few more days here then it&rs…

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NEW YORK PART 4

by Jez Bond

Thursday, 2 September, 2010

Day 3 - Chocolate S’more cookies… I’m awake at 6am. Could I really have so much work ahead of me? Yes I actually do. After solid head in the computer time I think I should open the blinds. My gorgeous friend Ellie and I decide what better way to spend a morning than having breakfast at Tiffany’s. So we bundle beautiful Lukas and take a cab to Wall Street. It’s closer for us than the 5th Avenue store. Since all my rushing around we’ve barely had time to have fun! Post retail heaven what better than to stroll …

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NEW YORK PART 3

by Jez Bond

Wednesday, 1 September, 2010

The Chelsea Market is a cool welcome change from the steam outside. As I pondered the many choices a strange feeling crept over me – oh no that was an increasing level of volume on the buskers slightly eerie version of Eleanor Rigby. I can’t put a finger on why I got chills down my spine. Hmm. Where do they all come from? I was advised to eat my lunch here so I finally move away from the creeping-me-out-music and choose sushi. One of my favorite lunch treats, this Lobster company’s tempura prawn roll was nothing short of happiness in a bite. Ah. Still and calm but wait …

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SOME FEEDBACK

by Jez Bond

MONDAY, 31 AUGUST, 2010

We are near the end of the consultation period for our planning application and I believe there have been almost twenty letters and/or emails of support from members of the public – plus a very positive letter from The Theatres’ Trust (who are nearly always consulted concerning either alterations or new builds of theatres throughout the UK). I am not sure at this point whether there have been any letters of disapproval or any concerns raised, but it seems not. Of course the area where this might be expected is from residents in the neighbouring dwellings, however w…

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28 MONTHS LATER

by Jez Bond

Monday, 30 August, 2010

An early start today as associate director, Melli Bond, travelled to Heathrow airport bound for New York to meet with theatre companies and literary agents. Following her departure on the tube, Hazel (our Mastiff cross) and I went for a long walk. The streets of London were decidedly eerie. Traffic at 8am was almost non-existent and pedestrians were few and far between. It seemed more like a scene from ’28 Days Later’ than a typical bank holiday. Indeed, I rather felt it would the perfect setting for the sequel to the sequel (’28 Weeks Later’) and began…

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THE FINAL SUMMING UP

by Jez Bond

Monday, 23 August, 2010

As those who have been following this blog will be aware, over the past few days I have been attending jury service and my comments have been somewhat split between the Old Bailey and The Park Theatre. Today’s blog is no exception… Following the incessant rain throughout last night, it was observed by our project manager, Jordan, that the water levels in our trial holes have risen substantially. I’ve often marveled at the beauty of rain on stage – but that’s always been the controlled variety, pumped around through pipe work. Eventuall…

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IN COURT

by Jez Bond

Monday, 16 August, 2010

Over the next two weeks I am sitting on a jury at the Old Bailey and therefore the time I have available to spend on the theatre is limited. It’s a great shame that I can’t blog about my daily experiences in court but we are all obliged not to disclose any details of the case to anybody outside of the courtroom until after the event. So that particular drama will just have to wait. At lunchtime I heard from Dave Hughes that the council meeting with our planning officer and design officer concerning the facade went very well and that everybody is feeling positive ab…

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CAT5

by Jez Bond

Monday, 9 August, 2010

A technical learning curve today on the subject of CAT5 telephone, internet and network infrastructure. I wouldn’t say that I am a master by any means but, after having spoken to a number of extremely helpful companies, I am however aware of the basic workings of the systems and the options available to us. One particularly good discovery – which I suspected existed – was the use of telephone systems that handle multiple extensions without multiple lines. What I mean is this: where we are looking at having, say, one telephone number for admin related calls, w…

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AND MORE...

by Jez Bond

MONDAY, 6 AUGUST, 2010

The following to be read in a dramatic ‘movie voice’: “4 white recessed double wall sockets 3 single telephone points with master plus auxiliaries on separate lines 2 double glazed clear partially opening roof lights with trickle vents 1 FD30 fire door with single vision panel, electro magnetic release, push release to exterior and fire breakout button In a world of construction comes a tale of one man… who went to work a theatre. He was a guy with a dream. But the dream was bigger than he ever imagined. When…

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PYRENEES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 2 August, 2010

This morning brought an email confirming our charity status. I am delighted to announce that we are now a registered charity, number 1137223. It’s another step closer to the realisation of our dreams… I have been furiously emailing and calling councillors for most of the day, attempting to arrange face to face meetings with them ahead of our planning committee meeting. Whilst those councillors who sit on the planning committee must remain impartial, I am keen to share my ideas and passion for the project in person. The room data sheets need to be finish…

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THE RSC BOW

by Jez Bond

Monday, 26 July, 2010

Starting in Richmond at 10.30 am this morning, Ben Jones, Dave Hughes and I headed out west in Dave’s trusty volkswagen. Destination: Stratford-upon-Avon. Today was the eagerly awaited tour of the RSC’s £112 million renovated home. The project comprises of three theatre spaces  - the temporary ‘Courtyard Theatre’ which was built on the site of the former ‘The Other Place’  as a RST prototype and temporary home during the main build, the 1,000+ seat renovated RST (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, also known as the main house) and th…

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DR. THEATRE MEETS DR. APPLE

by Jez Bond

Monday, 19 July, 2010

There’s a well known phrase in theatre that no matter how unrehearsed something is or how unprepared the actors are for that last minute change, somehow when the audience arrive the show runs smoother than it ever did before: Dr Theatre comes to the rescue. It’s a sentiment shared by the character of Philip Henslowe played by Geoffrey Rush in Tom Stoppard’s ‘Shakespeare in Love’: “Philip Henslowe: Mr. Fennyman, allow me to explain about the theatre business. The natural condition is one of insurmountable obstacles on the road to i…

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THE SEVENTH AND A HALF FLOOR

by Jez Bond

Monday, 12 July, 2010

Today we were privileged to have undertaken a tour of yet another theatre – I will tot them all up in a future blog but with the Arcola and RSC coming up we must be approaching double figures. I don’t wish to put down any theatre, not least one that has obviously struggled so long and hard to pull together the finances to equip itself and open its doors. But it has to be said that this was not the best designed by any means. I think, when one looks at these buildings, one must try to compare like for like. That is to say the facilities of a 300 seater are not expec…

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SPAMALOT

by Jez Bond

Monday, 5 July, 2010

News update: This morning our newsletter was had delivered to 600 local residents and businesses. This evening it has been emailed to our mailing list – which is increasing day by day. If you are reading this and you have not subscribed please send an email with your postal address to: info[the 'at' sign]parktheatre.co.uk I have encrypted the email above as recently we have been receiving a few spam mails – and even some spam comments on the blog. With my adequate knowledge of computers I understand how this is achieved – by some…

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SOCIAL MEDIA

by Jez Bond

Monday, 28 June, 2010

Today has been spent on social media. Our Facebook group has been set up and all known interested parties have been invited. There are photos currently posted and more will follow. There will also be some video in the coming weeks. Our website has been updated with a new link to the facebook group. We’ve had a good response so far and a number of local community groups have asked for material for their website. Hopefully things will be posted within the next dew days. Furthermore, on viewing the photos one organisation asked about using some of the joists we had removed …

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FORGIVE US, DAVE HUGHES

by Jez Bond

Monday, 21 June, 2010

For the benefit of those unfamiliar with the term – and just a few months ago I would have put myself into that category – the words ‘scheme freeze’ refer to the time in a design when the plans are set and no further changes can be made. In reality the smaller details can continue to be tweaked but the key areas – for example anything which affects the fire, access or acoustic strategies or which redefines the scale of any extension – remain fixed. It is, therefore, with the combined cheekiness and nervousness of a schoolboy that I have proc…

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ITEAC 2

by Jez Bond

Monday, 14 June, 2010

Day 2 of the ITEAC proved to spark even more debate. In ‘Getting sound into auditoria’ answers to the various questions of sound design, however, were far more unanimous than the previous day’s session on acoustics. The sound position within the auditorium (and ‘within’ being the key) was deemed of critical importance and one sound designer also highlighted the need for correctly positioned speakers: “it is better to have low quality speakers in good positions than high quality speakers in bad positions” Interestingly this echoed something that w…

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