Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Photo Finnish!

Amount of creative activity acheived in last 24 hours: music and drama, 2 hours
Level of conviction in own genius: 9
Hair day: needs cutting at ludicrously cool place in Brick Lane pronto

Wow. Juice went to Finland's second city, Tampere, last week for a big vocal festival which goes on there every two years, and namely to take part in the vocal ensemble competition. We flew over stretches of shimmering inky lakes and regimented pines and entered the land of impossibly pale blonde people, all speaking in more eloquent English than I. Our 15-minute performance of mad experimental histronics and spacious bluegrass harmonies went rather well seeing as we'd had about 2 hours sleep, this being the Land of No Darkness and Night-Time Drilling. Once we'd seen the standard of the other groups competing though, we thought we'd more chance of winning Miss World 2007. We had was a real insight into what we're missing - the continent, and Northern Europe particularly, is chock full of incredible a cappella groups, with a lot on the jazz and pop side but at such a high standard it's embarrassing. We watched The Idea of North, an amazing Ozzie group who were Olympic athletes of the voice, and the soothing Finnish group Rajaton, and the sweet German Calmus Ensemble. The winners were revealed the next day in a nail-bitingly drawn-out finale, and we were squealingly joyous to come second. We were I'm sure credited for doing a range of pure spare harmonies and fiendishly difficult yet funky new music that no-one else, frankly, on the planet could do, hurrah! Now that we've conquered that piece, we ar ready for anything, including running small countries and travelling through time. We were absolutely chuffed to bleedin' bits, and the guys that won, Vocaldente from Germany, utterly deserved their prize - no matter how good we are, we couldn't have had a whole room dancing sweatily to sexy five-part a capella salsa in the club night afterwards.

Compliments flowed like wine and our grins stretched wider and wider as people raved to us about how amazing we were, how we could have won, how sexy we were in our black glampuss outfits and lippy... my favourite comments were a) from a Finnish lady who said we looked just like those characters from, oh that American show - I was just hoping it wasn't 'Ugly Betty' - and when she said 'Sex and the City!' I could have hugged her b) from Canadian choral hippie supremo Stephen Hatfield who kept banging on about how we were 'feminine energy at its finest' and drew men into our alluring spell, tee hee hee. We're thinking we will spend our 2000 euros on shoes....

Gosh. So that was damned cool. Recently I've done all sorts, from recording parts of an opera by Jenni Roditi in her stonking penthouse apartment where juice also did a great recent gig, performing with DOLLYman in the Big Chill House, making my DJing debut with a great set at the Fleapit for a new 'Virgin Media' collective, auditioning for English Pocket Opera animateur work... and lots more that I am now forgetting. But I remember one thing: I AM A GENIUS!

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