Day 53: The Little Red Door
Scuffed and dirt weary the little red door of the Concert Artistes Association, Club For Acts & Actors on Bedford Street in Covent Garden is a portal to a throw back world of 1980’s bedsit land; gloss layered wood work in time muted cream, there was a feeling of vaudeville in the air, the open, friendly greeting somehow quaint and of a bygone time. There is none of the sophistication of The Ivy or the cache of The Groucho Club but there is a certain je ne sais quoi; a layer of distortion that magically attires the guests in collar pointed shirts and crimpilene, momentarily I thought I too had been been restyled when I passed under the lintel into this in between world under the oxter of Adventure Bar. I wondered if Quentin Crisp perhaps was holding court somewhere in the ether.
The bar is upstairs, the stairwell lined with faded, corner curled and wear torn flyers and posters for every possible play. I was enthralled in a voyeuristic kind of way and the headshot lined walls of the bar pushed me over the edge of incredulity. I didnt recognise any of the names or the faces, the smiles and the faces were shiny, happy people belonging here but from a different time and place. I wasnt sure if I was the living visiting the world of the dead, or not yet born in a different slice of time.
I had been invited to a concert by Phyllis MacMahon actress and writer of Divorcing God? an autobiographical play about her life as a nun in Ireland in the 1960s and her escape to the bright lights of London. She lives still on Charing Cross Road in the heart of theatreland and the CAA is a familar haunt. Phyllis is a character with the energy and lifeforce of a firelighter – a spark of a fire, a party, a get together and she is up to burn brightly. The concert was being run as a fund raiser for a yearly pilgrimmage to Lourdes by the student volunteers from Newman House, which provides accommodation for Catholic university students, in London. And what a jolly talented bunch they proved to me; from a rendition of Michael Jackson’s Heal The World, a couple of original songs, piano and trumpet, classical and the piece de resistance in my eye’s Father Stephen Wang in his collar playing Aint Misbehavin’ on his tenor saxophone. He was at pains to explain that misbehavin’ wasnt something that the students were encouraged to do.
100 Days of Awe is a playful project I set up to bring my attention to awe in my daily life. I see awe as wonder, a mixture of amazement and respect. I expect the experience of awe to be about perception shifting awareness and that demands a reframing of some sort. I am excited to see what will awe me on this journey.
Anne K. Scott is an imagination technologist, her work to teach, facilitate and deliver innovation for individuals and business. She is the creator of FindYourMojo iPHone app. If you are interested in what intuitive coaching can do for you please do contact me. I support clients all over the world.