Well, we did it. Four shows, to warm and appreciative audiences, and we raised around 3500 Euro. In Andhra Pradesh where it will end up, that kind of money can really achieve something. And so, in spite of our several setbacks and my periodic beefs about the work entailed, it has turned out to be a very happy and satisfying project. I can’t imagine a nicer Venetian swan-song.
The curtain came down at about 12.30 on Saturday lunch time and the company swung into action, ferrying props and sets out of the back of the theatre into a waiting boat. Poetry in motion. By 1.45 we were all seated in a pizzeria and the wine was flowing.
And on the subject of flowing wine… I find myself in the unpleasant situation of having to defend myself against veiled accusations of peculation. They appeared last week on the Venetian Cat blog of Cat Bauer. Ms Bauer is a former member of our theatre group. ‘Former’ because she was and is unable to live in peace with other members of the company. On the whole her complaints are daft enough or trivial enough to be ignored although, for the record, Fr. John-Henry Bowden is a patient and kindly man who did everything humanly possible to give her practical and spiritual support in her time of distress. And my choking lunch guest was actually saved by an ex-army medical corps friend who knew what to do but hey, what’s a Heimlich manoeuvre between friends? The most mischievous accusation is that I took hard-earned and generously donated production funds and blew them on a lavish party in a Palladian villa. This has to be answered.
I have many faults but fraudulent behaviour isn’t among them. The Villa Saracena weekend was a privately-funded, self-catered affair and I’m afraid Ms Bauer is just peeved not to have been invited.
A slightly sour end to a great week, but are we downhearted? We are not. Pantalon Players, take another bow. You deserve it.
Oh, and the Curtain Down lunch? Before anyone calls in the auditors, we went Dutch on the pizzas and the wine was on me. Clear?