Sunday, 11 April 2010

Barter Books

I went up to Northumberland for a few days to stay with my friend and her family in a little holiday cottage that they had rented for Easter, and we went to Barter Books.

Barter Books is one of the largest second hand bookshops in England, and it used to be a train station, so it is pretty mahooosive.

It has lots of lovely old books, and plenty of fairly new paperbacks as well. My idea of heaven.

You can bring in some of your old books with which to 'barter' with, so you can buy new ones. My friend's family brought in 3 big bags full of books, so they let me pick some books for myself and technically have them for free. Yay.

Barter Books is also home of the 'Keep Calm and Carry On' poster, which they found in a book they bought in auction in 2000. So, I am now the proud owner of a Keep Calm and Carry On mug :)

I love tea :)

Have you ever been to any nice second hand bookshops? Did you have a lovely Easter?

First two images from Google

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake

Last night I went to see Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake at the Alhambra Theatre in Bradford

Two words: A. Mazing.

This was my first ballet, so I was a bit hesitant; I thought that I would be waiting for someone to speak all of the time, but that wasn't the case. I kind of got lost in it all, as cliché as it sounds...

I've always found that there's a stigma attached to ballet or the theatre by young people. It's seen as being a bit pretentious or pompous, but I'd definitely prefer to see a play than watch the same regurgitated rom-com Hollywood has been producing lately. Although I do quite want to see Remember Me. Anyway...

Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake is a contemporary interpretation, and he chose to have male swans instead of the traditional female ones. Thank. you. Matthew Bourne. Male ballet dancers are just beautiful, and the two leads (Sam Archer and Jonathan Ollivier) were pretty breathtaking to watch (body-wise and dance ability). Ollivier is married though, dammit. I would have hung around the stage door for hours after the performance if I wasn't with my mum...

Look at the beautiful men :'-)

Parts of the performance were quite comedic, which I didn't expect. But it was a contemporary version after all, so why not? Why shouldn't we laugh at a ballet?

It ended with a spectacular finale, but it was a bit of a tear-jerker!
5 stars out of 5
I was sat there in total awe for most of the performance.

It's next showing in Athens, but then comes back to the UK in September for Norwich, Wimbledon, Leicester, and finally Glasgow. Go see it!


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