September has been a bit of a culture fest – a fabulous film about rainbow comrades rattling the tin for the cause, Liam’s born again experience when kooky Kate flew out of reclusion and, right at the start of the month, a musical treat from Mixed Voice at the Norwich Playhouse. Every year, Norfolk’s premier entertainment company asks the audience to vote on a show they should try on for size. Last year it was Rent. This year, the vote went to a revival of Godspell, the retelling of the parables attributed to the famous Galilean. With its happy clappy tunes, a flower power cast in primary colours and a newly polished script fit for the iPhone generation, it’s huge fun. Not nearly as successful as the unstoppable and overhyped Lloyd Webber juggernaut, Jesus Christ Superstar, Godspell offers more of a playground intimacy and really suits a smaller venue. Believers and non-believers alike, who could argue with the carpenter’s message of peace and love, particularly when it’s delivered by the multi-talented players of Mixed Voice? But I did spot a small congregation of dog collars fixed firmly to their seats during the standing ovation at the end. Maybe they didn’t like the frocks. There’s no accounting for taste.
Jack Scott Imagine the absurdity of two openly gay, married, middle aged, middle class men escaping the liberal sanctuary of anonymous London to relocate to a Muslim country. I chronicled our exploits with the mad, the bad, the sad and the glad in a blog for the whole world to ignore. Then came the book which became a critically acclaimed best seller. Its success opened out a whole new career for me, firstly as an author, and now as a publisher. Who'd have thought it? Certainly not me. In June 2012, we ended our Anatolian affair and paddled back to Britain on the evening tide, washing up in Norwich, a surprising city in eastern England, then to the wilds of Norfolk as the only gays in the village. I’m sometimes nostalgic for our encounters with the hopeless, the hapless and, yes, the happy go lucky. They gave me an unexpected tale to tell and for this I thank them.