Category Archives: Reviews


Trouble in paradise — a problem for the “most beautiful beach on earth”. Drifters, written by Martin Malcolm, The Bike Shed Theatre, Review by Claire de Sully.

It is not often that I am short of words or unable to give an opinion. After watching Drifters, staged at the Bike Shed Theatre, I was dumbstruck as I turned to my companion with only a polite awkward smile as my saving grace. This was because the performance I had seen, just a short play, had made me feel so damn guilty to the point where I did not want to think about it, let alone express it. What I had seen, learnt, discovered, I felt responsible for. My companion was the writer of the piece, Read more [...]

Review Carmina Burana, Bristol Metropolitan Orchestra, Colston Hall November 15th

A dichotomy, perhaps - on the one hand I strongly believe we can make whatever we want happen in our lives if we have an unfaltering belief in our ability to shape our future with a certain mind-set, while on the other hand I am aware of the fickleness of fate, as news reaches me this week of a friend’s sudden life altering illness. It’s been a week of unexpected events crashing in my world, leading to a last minute dash to the Colston Hall  to see Carmina Burana performed by Bristol Metropolitan Read more [...]

Street writing – coming out of the creative writing wilderness

It’s been more than 20 years since I last produced any form of creative writing. Life takes us down different paths to what we envisage for ourselves; our talents, our creativity, often lend themselves to other areas of our lives and manifest in the things we do. I had mixed feelings when I learnt as an adult that I was dyslexic. In some ways it was a positive revelation. It explained why I had had difficulty with grasping words to express myself in the written form. Knowing did enable Read more [...]

A Real Age Old Problem – Review of Anna Perra’s “Real Women Fashion Show”, Charlton House, Shepton Mallet, Somerset. October 2nd.

A lifetime of poor posture, weight battles, accompanied by a lack of confidence - partly due to being surrounded by constant media reminders of how I should look and don’t - still means that walking down a catwalk is a battle against insecurity for me. Looking at the positives, what does come with getting older is the realisation that it is impossible to be an ideal woman because she doesn’t exist. Now I am a maturer woman, I am reminded that age is a signifier. So many interviews with Read more [...]

Going Down Like a Storm – review of Britten’s Noye’s Fludde, presented by Charles Hazlewood with Kneehigh theatre company.

Reivew by @ClairedeSully.  Orchestival, July 19th, 2014, Bath and West Showground, Somerset. It begins with a few thousand of us gathered in an oversized cowshed, still with the whiff of its former inhabitants, not sure what to expect. Entering this not-run-of-the-mill music venue in a drizzle of rain and ominous skies, we were here for Charles Hazelwood's performance of Benjamin Britten’s Noye’s Fludde.  This was part of  (in fact the only event to be staged) of the reduced Orchestival, Read more [...]

Guest Album Review – International Blue, Stephen Emmer

A timeless collection by Andy Sully "Call the tune/Will you swoon?/As I croon" sang Bryan Ferry in Roxy Music's Serenade. But pop crooning is slightly lost amid the urban clatter of  today's musical landscape. It's twin heydays in the post rock n'roll era were the Walker Brothers moodiness of the mid-60s and the sharp-suited shining pop of the early 80s. Those are the two touchstones for Dutch musician Stephen Emmer on his new album International Blue, which boldly sets out its stall Read more [...]

Making Musical Connections – Stephen Emmer’s ‘International Blue’ showcase at Abbey Road Studios

It's not what you know, it's who you know?  Well it's handy that a facebook friend (and real life friend) of mine is head of press for a leading music PR agency and this led to an invitation to a very special showcase event at Abbey Road yesterday. "Who you know" was also a theme of this  showcase, which featured: Stephen Emmer, Tony Visconti, Midge Ure, Glenn Gregory, Liam Mckhaey, Neil Crossley and Michael Dempsey as they presented their new collaborative album - 'International Blue'. Read more [...]

Keeping it real – becoming an Anna Perra model

It began with: “Claire would you do some modelling for Anna Perra?” Me?  Deep breath, suck in teeth and ponder. Is this a Kate Moss moment (20 years and two sizes too late), where you are stopped in a city centre, handed a business card, which states: "top modelling agency" and then you hear the words: "Ever considered being a model, give me a call?" Then bang into fame accompanied by a pop star boyfriend on your arm. Nope, this was a friend of a friend who wanted some “real women” Read more [...]

We’re the Kids from the Eighties! Kim Wilde Christmas Bristol 02 Party – a review by Claire de Sully

Who could resist a chance to go to Kim Wilde’s Christmas Party?   In my office asking those under 25 years I did get a blank expression when I excitedly said I’m on Kim Wilde’s guest list.  I got a better response when I started singing: Looking out a dirty old window … or maybe they were just being nice? Kim Wilde is a generation thing and I am a kid who grew up in the 1980s when she burst forth  in 1981 with her worldwide smash hit 'Kids In America'.  Yes Kim Wilde, with one of the Read more [...]

Review: Immaculate community theatre and popular TV culture history lesson served with dinner in Bristol’s alternative “West End”, by Claire Sully

I had an unexpected treat last night.  My friend Annie took me to see:  "Fanny and Johnnie Cradock Cook the Great American Songbook" at the Hen and Chicken, Southville. Annie’s friend is theatre producer Sheila Hannon.  I met Sheila at the entrance of the venue – she was unassuming as she sat there checking people in.  Although she had no idea who I was when she met me (and I had no idea who she was at that point)  she took my hand in both of hers, stood up, and gave me the warmest greeting, Read more [...]