Sunday, 3 April 2011

The Play House at the V&A museum

I now know what it's like for stars to walk the red carpet. The apprehension, the exhilaration followed swiftly by the terror as folk push objects for signing into your mittens and microphones into your face (complete with bellowed questions about "how it feels to be here tonight"). Alas I have not yet made it to A-list status yet, but my experience came courtesy of another amazing evening of interactive theatre and performance at London's Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A).

The Play House saw artists, crafts-people and performers of all sorts crowd into the museum and fill it with amazing experiences late one Friday night. There were face painting workshops, impromptu dance routines, puppet classes and all manner of static displays. It was glorious and slightly surreal to bump into my friend Philip Levine who stood atop a plinth at the end of the Renaissance sculpture gallery (bottom pic). He works with artist Kat Sinclair to decorate his scalp with everything from bodypaint to Swarovski crystals (as was the case in this occasion).

We drifted, mesmerized, through the galleries until a roar of cheers greeted us from a corridor. As we approached the tunnel, an usher grabbed me and dragged me forward. A red carpet beckoned and he pushed me onwards. Bewildered, I entered a fictitious media scrum as actors behind two ropes screamed they loved me, begged me to sign their limbs, invited me to pose for their cameras and, at last, a PR crew grabbed me and fired questions like there was no tomorrow.

"How does it feel to be here tonight?"

You can see more about Philip and Kat's work here.