Into The Snake Pit!

 

AP & girls Quidam

Hello!

So this year has really started back with a bang! As soon as I got back to London I threw myself “into the snake pit” so to speak, with a whole crazy week of plotting the Python show alongside the brilliant Eric Idle and my fabulous assistant Richard Roe. I think sometime around Thursday mild hysteria set in, and I can tell it’s going to be a very interesting and exciting next few months. Its going to be choc full of Python old and new, and I just hope the audience laugh as much as I have done.

I was so happy I managed to find time for some Cirque du Soleil, and that included not only attending the show – which I will tell you about in a minute – but also fitting in a visit from my dearest long-time friend and now head of Cirque du Soleil worldwide Jerry Nadal. Jerry and I go way back working on Starlight Express and Saturday Night Fever in Las Vegas many years ago, and have remained firm friends ever since. He was in London with his partner and two angelic twin boys who literally made my heart melt. Of course as I mentioned we attended the UK premier of Quidam at the Royal Albert Hall, one of the original Cirque touring shows, and still retains as much beauty and spectacle as it ever did. It was such a wonderful evening, all my family there with me, and of course catching up with some fabulous famous faces. ImageImageImage

One person in particular I couldn’t wait to see was David Emanuel, fresh out of the jungle. David and I have know each other since the crazy 80’s, and my daughter Alana was even a child model in his fashion show! I thought he did brilliantly on the show, and it was wonderful to catch up and reminisce about the good old days – or so we remember them as!

One thing I have been cracking down on is my new year fitness. Every morning I’ve been getting in the pool and kicking ass on my exercise bike, not to mention really making an effort to stay away from the seemingly ever present roast potatoes! Hopefully I’m going to see some results soon, as I’ve got a whole gorgeous wardrobe of clothes waiting for me to fit back into.

I’m excited to report I’m going to be on the radio this coming Saturday morning on LBC with Andrew Castle from 8am – 9am, so tune in! We’ll be catching up on all the goss, as well as a fair few topics that I’m sure will get people talking.

I’m also very excited about seeing Candide this weekend, starring the lovely Scarlett Strallen. I have know her since she was born, having worked for many years with her mother Cherida Langford, her grandmother Babette Langford, and of course her auntie Bonnie Langford – as well as her three amazing sisters Summer, Zizi and Sassi. Needless to say I am so immensely proud of all of them.

Signing off, work calls!

AP & Craig RH

Hello again!

I feel like the past few blogs I’ve posted have been filled with promises of more frequent updates, and yet every time I do it’s always a good couple of weeks until the next! Somehow my life currently seem to be moving faster than I can keep up with it, and so although my blogs are fewer, there’s certainly more to talk about in each one!

I managed to get back to my hideaway in the country for a week, which was wonderful as ever. We were also joined for a couple of days by our long time friends Flea and John ,who arrived in spectacular style! John is the drummer for Spandau Ballet, so there was lots of rhythm and music the whole weekend. There’s some lovely pics of the weekend John posted to my twitter so make sure you have a look @arlenephillips

Between long walks, long dinners with friends, and dare I say it one or two longs naps… I was refreshed and ready to hit London and the long week ahead.

I arrived back to Alana in the office as Coco was away on holiday (goodness knows she needs one after running my crazy life!) so we hit the ground running with the piles of emails I had tried to ignore whilst away. I’d just like to add it’s not that I ignore them through choice, my family usually try and hide my computer so that I do actually take a break!

The week was filled with so many different and exciting things, starting with a hilarious mornings filming at the ITV This Morning studios. I’m not allowed to tell you what it’s about yet, but I can give you a clue…
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Whilst I was there I bumped into a couple of celebs in the form of the adorable Shane Filan from Westlife, who was debuting his new single, and also the wonderful Ruth Langsford who so brilliant supports the Alzheimers Society alongside me.
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As always I do love trying out new places to eat, so this time it was the turn of Cicchetti in Picadilly, the sister restaurant to family favourite San Carlo in Manchester, which I wrote about last time. The whole family came with to celebrate Alana’s birthday, and after feasting on a variety of mix and match dishes including mini pizza and lobster pasta, The Dessert arrived. A wonderous plate of miniature Italian pastries, Tiramasu and Ice Cream, we left feeling suitably stuffed and ready for a lie down!

I managed to get in some theatre (of course) and watched The Colour Purple at the Chocolate Factory, where I cried my eyes out for at least three quaters of the show. It was brilliantly done, with a truly outstanding cast although I think it is sold out, beg, borrow or steal a ticket and get yourself down there. I was also lucky enough to bag tickets to see Lady Gaga in concert at the Roundhouse for the Itunes festival, which was a sumptuous theatrical feast in itself. Her voice live is as powerful as you would expect, with an array of costumes like you had never seen. It truly was a once in a lifetime experience and I loved every second.

On a complete whim on Friday evening, myself and the family decided to head down to the cinema for a bit of Alpha Papa action, starring the brilliant Steve Coogan. Having loved Alan Partridge since the early days it was great to see a whole movie dedicated to his self obsessed idiocy, and the film didn’t fail to deliver it. I’ve also worked with Steve on a couple of occasions, and find his genuis quite staggering. Although not the most fast paced of films, I found myself laughing out loud alongside the rest of the cinema, and was still laughing all the way home.

All of a sudden it was the weekend again, and it started off with a brunch for 20 members of my family, who had arrived from Leeds, Cheshire, some had even come all the way from the Kings Road, which when you live in North London even seems far!  Fresh bagels wiht cream cheese and smoked salmon were piled high, along with a giant box of cupcakes from Dixie’s, owned by Apprentice finalist (and daughter’s best friend) Luisa Zissman. Of course they were too delicious to resist, but I only had the one. (Ok two…)

As I had family staying for the rest of the weekend it was pretty much taken up with trips here and there around London, a gorgeous dinner up in Hampstead, and a wonderful home cooked Sunday lunch. After saying my goodbyes, that evening I said a very big hello to my darling Patrick Murphy who is visiting from his new job in Australia, and I have been missing him so much! We gossiped and laughed as much as we possibly could, as I know it’s gong to be quite a long time till I get another chance.

I was bursting with excitement about a very special dinner with my dear friend Jerry Nadel, who currently runs all the incredible Cirque du Soleil show in Las Vegas. We met many years ago when Starlight Express was there, and have remained friends ever since. We ate delicious sushi at Roka, and pretty much tried everything on the menu!

So it’s now Thursday, and Coco is back, and here we are in the office, still since Monday doing crazy amounts of catch up and sending lots of love to you all and hoping the rain isn’t getting everyone down!
So until next week…..

Love Arlene x