Friday, January 11, 2008

IS THAT IT........?

WE went with high hopes - but left with huge disappointment.
Tonight's opening was typical of the Culture Company's top down approach.
A massive crowd turned up expecting a great show.
But none of us were engaged.
There was no singalong to any recognisable Liverpool 'anthem'.
No dancing. No terrace chants. No humour.
No emotional engagement with what is being done in our name, with our money, in our city.
Instead we were presented with a generally uninspiring, unfocussed, unintelligible series of set piece scenes.
It was cold and flat and, sadly, a bit dull.
It has also cost the city a fortune.
Ringo's appearance was a cynical attempt to cash in on the year - and promote his new single. Incredibly, the unknown MC told us, without a trace of Scouse irony, that Ringo's single was "on sale on Monday."
People in the crowd shuffled their feet with embarrassment.
As the patient and passive spectators were showered with confetti, one wag near us commented loudly: "That's council taxpayer's money."
The sound was crap, the fireworks flat and the music, too often, a lifeless thrash.
St George's Hall, as ever, looked wonderful.
People started leaving after 30 minutes.
By the end, most of us were dying to get off to the pub and drown our disappointment.
We have no doubt that the people of Liverpool will make the most of 2008.
But on the evidence of this damp squib, it will be in spite of the city council and the Culture Company and the hangers-on and the bullshitters - not because of them.
We will say no more, except to record the fact that Jason Harborow had the utterly astonishing cheek to turn up at the after show party at the Empire where he spent most of the time the time drinking with Hasitall and Colin CoverUp. No doubt negotiating his pay-off. We will post a picture soon.
We leave any further comment on what should have been an historic and celebratory night to you, the people of Liverpool. Feel free.
This is Liverpool, European Capital of Culture 2008.


Staffer said...

Have people forgot that the great white hope - Our Lord Redmond, could have changed things a long time ago. His lack of action allowed it to become a mess. If he bothered listening he would find out that there is work going on to encourage particpation. But he is an egomaniac, who has seen his chance to promote his own interests. How Hilton had the audacity to even talk to Harborow, is just amazing. Disgraceful behaviour. I am so disappointed at tonight.

Anonymous said...

It was soooooooooooo boring!

Anonymous said...

That was an absolute disgrace.

Quote of the night was made by a lady behind me who stated:

'Oh well it could have been worse we could have been charged for these tickets!'

At which the man next to her told her 'we will be paying for it; in council tax!'

Says it all - how sad?

What the hell? said...

I can't express my disappointment, anger and frustration to the extent I feel it inside.

Tonight's show couldn't have distanced the people of the city further than it did, where was the party, the carnival atmosphere, the excitement, the passion?

All I saw was a dull corporate video, which I could hardly hear and I was stood directly in front of the screen.

I want my money back!

The Fat Controller said...

What was that corporate bollocks?

Where where the star performances?

All we had was Ringo who plugged his record (available from Monday in all good record shops!) and mimed his drum solo, what a pile of shit!

I feel ashamed.

Minerva said...

I wonder how the unknown MC not even a scouser got the job, I'm sure it couldn't be because he's related to another non scouser whio seems to get a lot of lucrative work from ther culture company - without ever having to complete any application forms?
What's the thinking here? Well Warren we need someone to MC the opening night - a voice of the people - I know let's make sure he's not from Liverpool, he's unable to learn lines and lets make sure nobody's ever heard of him and put him on a pedestal. Hmmm and how much should we pay him????

Heart as Big as Liverpool said...

I thought the references to the crushing at Hillsborough and the issues it caused was a nice finishing touch!

Anonymous said...

I sat on a crushed train and was carried along by the throngs thinking to myself "Perhaps some good will come of this after all". The thought was short lived, after dodging Stewards trying to make me go to a position whre I wouldn't have seen a thing I ended up in a Crush under concourse house and managed to extricate myself to a position where I could withdraw from the whole mismanaged mess before it even started.

As for Jason dragging himself off his sick bed and hobnobbing with the usual suspects I just knew there would be free champagne and canapes for the chosen few somewhere among the dabacle. THeir backs will be black and blue with all the slapping tomorrow.

Fit Gett said...

A gorgeously promising day turns into disappointment. What a real shame and a wasted opportunity. I asked some people what they thought of the People's opening and only one person loved it. The rest were vociferous in their sense of disappointment. So it wasn't just me then.

Anonymous said...

has anyone seen the BBC write up - Did their reporter go somehwhere else by mistake or something?

Anonymous said...

Didn't Paul Clark look stupid in his robes and stuff. You could have knocked me down with a feather when he came out of that box waving to everyone like he was some kind of celebrity. I laughed out loud!

Anonymous said...

There was nothing magical or memorable about any of it. Pointless.

Anonymous said...

It was like celebrity squares only with out any celebrities.

But as Lord Redmond says
"we will pick over de bone of dis for years cos dats wot we scousers do"

Anonymous said...

2 million quid ? not worth 200 quid

Culture Vulture said...

Thank god were have the cultural organisations doing stuff in the year or we would look like a bunch of idiots.
Thank god for Rattle at the Phil and Klimt and Brouhaha, and the irsh festival and hope st festival no of which have anything to do with the culture comapany.

The recent jazz festival was excellent and much better than this stuff.

Mind you the Cukture company as usual will be claiming everyone else's projects as their own.

If the culture company closed tomorrow no one would notice.

Anonymous said...

Over heard conversation from Culture Company staff last night.

'So has Jason finally gone then?'

'Dont know no one tells us anything we find out everything from the papers and the Blog site'

Sid & Doris said...

Er, we thought it was really quite good as a spectacle, well delivered but culture? Hmmm ... it was all style over substance; a big advert, hopefully before a proper main feature during the rest of the year. 'Fraid Ringo was a bit embarrassing. Like culture vulture above, we saw a better drummers in the fresh jazz festival!

Correspondent said...

In hindsight, I had the good fortune to watch parts of the tawdry spectacle on BBC News 24. Despite the Beeb's reporters' best attempts to talk up proceedings, the cameras didn't lie. Yes, bathing St. George's Hall in striking colours at night looked impressive. But then it would, wouldn't it? What the BBC elected to broadcast live struck me as being, at best, unoriginal, & at worst, grotesque. Oh, & if anybody really believes that dear old Ringo's (mimed) warbling amounted to a fitting musical opener for what should be a year of local culture, I suggest they see their GP.

Tori Blare said...

The only decent thing of the night was the chior and bungle playing the drums for the Wombats! I was wondering all night who all the people were that came out of the iron lung of precvious cargo,(or if you are not that gullable, out of the hall through the back of the lung and out the front,), why were the names not called out?
I only realised Sue Townsend and "Eddie Yates" were there when I got home and saw it on the news!
The event lacked lustre of any sort.
Who were the kids? What School were they from etc etc?
Where was Bradley?
As our so called leader, he should have said something?
The fella who was the MC sounded scouse to me, who was he though?
The confetti was all the recycled bog roll, it did look nice sticking to the trees that were in the way of the screen.
Ringo was just taking the piss, I can say no more on that matter.
Tony, I think you were standing near to me.
A really dissappinting effort all round really, people seemed bemused when the event came to an end as everyone was waiting for the super spectacular opening event, Is that one tomorrow?

Tony Parrish47 said...

Tonight's event at the Arena, which will undoubtedly be much better - because it couldn't be any worse - will be covered in full on tomorrow's blog. It is only for the great and the good and the mugs who paid £50 for a ticket. But our supporters will be there in force. We do however, expect a much more positive and professional show - just a pity that it is restricted to the great and the not so good. The ordinary people of Liverpool will of course, not be allowed anywhere near.

Anonymous said...

never thought i would defend the culture company but 1000 free tickets where distributed to people nominated for thier work in the community. I was at the arena and it was alright but i really wanted to see ringo he is definately too old and the end was a shambles. the whole show was alright but a bit disjointed at times

Champagne Charlie said...

Am I the only one who thinks that the adjective 'alright' used to describe the arena show; is simply not good enough?

These events should be creative, breathtaking, stunning, moving, inspiring etc. NOT 'alright'!

Tony's Parrishioners said...

if the culture company had managed the money properly all 10,000 seats could have gone to deserving people who had done work in the community. so don't expect us to congratulate them for giving away only 1,000. the fact that Sir Diddy Henshaw had a fucking free ticket says it all really. more soon.

Anonymous said...

Already setting themselves as the stars of the year, the Philharmonic were simply outstanding last night.

Tony Parrish47 said...

Agreed. Sensationally good. Head and shoulders above the rest.

Anonymous said...

All those I've spoken to over the weekend have expressed their disappointment in the public show on Friday.

Everyone without fail said they expected a dance and sing along set to fireworks, a full on party; we are supposed to be celebrating after all!

How can they keep getting it so wrong...? Oh yes those who designed the ceremony where not from the city and do not understand those that live here.


Anonymous said...

the philharmonic, the christians and the farm where brilliant and some of the background footage was good the young rappers where good as well but i didnt know who most of the 'stars' where

Bean Counter said...

The Arena show was alright and that is true saved by the hard work of dedicated industry professionals who care about what they do and proper performers like the Phil who wqith out doubt are the stars of 08 the new Russian conductor is an excellent find and will go along way to make the year good.

However as an event it was ropey at times and was not worth 1.5 million pounds even if it was twenty times better than the St Georges show wich cost in exces of 2 million pounds.

They work on the basis of throwing money at stuff if only to save their miserable arses.

Radiorogerside said...

Well it appears the imposter MC on top of the Wellington Column, goes by the name of Brian Dodd (an unknown thespian)from Widnes. I think Jase must have thought he was the celebrity Mr Dodd, of whom the populace of Merseyside has been clamouring for to be knighted.
(I was without a gig that night as well, could have done a better job, also with all the media coverage, moved my BBC persona up a notch. Ready to move on when the fat hits the fan for the Storeyteller and Wounded Badly)

How the council use Ripa to spy on you....

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