Following my Guardian online piece the other day (see just below for the link) I had a nice mail from Nicholas Eliott who is the company manager for Richard Maxwell – I mention his performance, reading stage directions during a work-in-progress, in the Guardian piece. What follows is from our exchange:
I enjoyed [the blog piece] not only for the personal glory, but because it was such a fine expression of ideas we share. Just Saturday I winessed the shambolic set-up of a nine-piece jazz band and told my friend I needed no theater better than nine musicians trying to figure out how to make seven music stand work.
The jazz band set-up sounds cool. I was on a visit to some theatre spaces in Vienna recently, looking at possible venues for something, and they showed me the main stage of the opera house. about 70 technicians (Im not joking) were busy on the stage with one thing and another – like looking into an ant colony. the guy shoing me around must've thought i was an idiot, I was so delighted by what i saw… would've hired them all immediately and called it a show…
The "drama" of the jazz show was that it was Halloween so the pianist was caught in traffic. They did a couple numbers without her, then after a little bit of commotion in the back, she quietly crossed the stage. The bandleader called over to her, "Are you really double-parked?"
"Yeah, Chris is going to watch it for me."