The Diary: Martin Scorsese; Cornwall's Port Eliot festival; Edinburgh Fringe; Hannah Arterton; Chesil Beach; Julian Schnabel
Friday 15 July 2011
Scorsese's festival fun
It will be the first and likely the last time that Martin Scorsese shares a bill with the WI. The Hollywood director has curated a programme of films for Cornwall's Port Eliot festival next weekend. On the bill are Murder on the Orient Express, All About Eve and Scorsese's favourite The Red Shoes. The director's costume designer on Gangs of New York, Sandy Powell, will also give a talk. Elsewhere, The Orangery will host the Port Eliot Flower Show, a tent run by Rambert designer Michael Howells, milliner Stephen Jones and the WI. Visitors can enter theatrically themed classes – designing a bouquet for a prima ballerina, making a Wizard of Oz scarecrow or fashioning a popstar out of greens for The Veg Factor. There will also be talks from gardener Dan Pearson and Justine Picardie and, of course, a cake stall. "Jarvis Cocker entered last year and Grayson Perry handed out the rosettes", says Howells. "And then you get Mrs Miggins from the village, too. It's just incredibly British." Will Scorsese pop in for a scone? "He's editing Hugo Cabret. We'd love him to come but his diary is so full", says Howells. "We have a secret A-lister to give out the prizes, though."
Stand wins Fringe bid
The Edinburgh Fringe shuffle continues apace. Already this year Assembly has been forced to relocate its programme to George Square while the Assembly Rooms close for a £13m refit. Now, in a major shake-up, The Stand has won the tender to manage the New Town venue for five years when it reopens in 2012, ousting Assembly, which has run it for the last 30 years. The Assembly Rooms will, confusingly, keep their name, according to The Stand director Tommy Sheppard, and a Jamie Oliver restaurant will open on site. The Stand will also operate as before. Meanwhile, the comedy club finds itself out on a limb in New Town this year asAssembly moves into its nowpermanent new home next to the Pleasance in Old Town. "It's an unhealthy development. The over-concentration of venues in one tiny area is bad for the city, bad for the Fringe and bad for visitors," says Sheppard. "From what I hear, a lot of the new Assembly venues are lecture theatres which are pretty echoey and cavernous."
Artertons are thenew Minogues!
Always on the lookout for fresh talent, Stephen Poliakoff has cast the newcomer Hannah Arterton in My City, his first new play in 12 years. Arterton, a final year student at Rada, will make her professional debut at the Almeida in September but it won't be her first premiere. She's attended several with her sister, the Bond girl, Gemma. "She's very petite and blonde", Arterton Sr. has said of her sibling. "We're like Kylie and Danni Minogue!" Hair colour aside, Arterton Jr. is following her sister to the letter: Gemma also landed her first job while still at Rada – in Poliakoff's Capturing Mary. Arterton Jr will play a waitress in My City. It's to be hoped that the Poliakoff effect is more positive for her than it was for Danny Lee Wynter, acclaimed co-star of Gemma in Capturing Mary, who recently wrote in The Stage about the fickleness of fame and his return to work as a waiter.
Sounds from the beach
Is Chesil Beach the most popular beach in art? First there was Ian McEwan's novel now Bill Fontana is planning an artwork for London using the sound of waves breaking on the stretch of Dorset shingle. Fontana will "wrap" the Wellcome Collection in a live feed of seaside sounds, using angled speakers and acoustic trickery to drown out the traffic on Euston Road and create a piece of coast in the heart of the city. In 1999 he installed sounds from the same beach at the National Maritime Museum. "He's a little obsessed with it and has been for a while," I'm told. "He lives in San Francisco, so the sea is in his psyche."
Never knowingly uncontroversial, Julian Schnabel has hit out at Oscar juries. "Gladiator came out when Before Night Falls did. Gladiator and Russell Crowe won the Academy Award," he told interview website The Talks. "Would I rather be Ridley Scott? No. Do I think Javier Bardem's performance was better than Russell's, although Russell is an excellent actor? Yes. Did we win the Oscar? No. Does it matter? No. He was the first Spanish actor to be nominated. What does that say about the Academy? There is a level of chauvinism over there; it's a club." And should Schnabel ever win an Oscar, I'm sure he'll turn down membership to said club.
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