“CAN you see OK if I sit here,” the woman, who had just taken the seat in front of me said politely, half turning towards me.
In that moment, mischief took over. I hesitated, then said, I hope equally politely,”Well, actually I’m not sure I can....”
The head in front of me shot round and after a startled look, both of us started to giggle.
It was Saturday, in the darkness of Holmfirth Picturedrome but where else would I have expected to meet Liz Walker, one of the country’s most creative talents in the worlds of adult puppetry and animated theatre.
Liz lives little more than a stone’s-throw from the Picturedrome and not surprisingly had been unable to resist the lure of this year’s Holmfirth Film Festival.
Film, after all, plays a big part in what she does and having seen her many shows with a former company, Faulty Optic, I know just how passionate she is about all manner of art forms.
I soon discovered that Liz will be at another of Holmfirth’s myriad festivals this summer, but this time, not in the audience.
Liz’s extraordinary skills and imagination will be seen on home ground on June 23 as her new company, Invisible Thread creates magic in Les Hommes Vides, The Empty Man.
Expect to be charmed, possibly disturbed by Liz’s unerring eye for mixing the slapstick and the surreal. It’s on June 23 in Holmfirth’s Back Lane Art Space.
Back at the Picturedrome, it was impossible to feel anything but proud of the wall to wall talent on display – particularly the home-grown variety
Festival organisers asked poet and writer Simon Armitage to chose his favourite film. He didn’t hesitate. He chose Herbert Ponting’s film, The Great White Silence and came along on the night to break the ice himself.
He introduced the film by explaining his interest in snow and ice. Basically, he’s from Marsden.
And just to balance the scale between Colne and Holme Valley talent, there was Holmfirth composer Barry Russell and a band of local musicians playing a brand new soundtrack commissioned to accompany the film by the Festival and written by Barry.
This is a terrific festival with plenty still to see tonight and all day tomorrow. It’s managed to showcase international talent and the cream of the locals too.
So apologies for the larking about Liz and when I turn up for your show in June, I promise not to do the wind-up act.