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Mark Drama

Last night was my second time seeing the Mark Drama and it was just as powerful knowing what was to come that when I saw it this time last year. It’s one of the most unique pieces of drama I have seen and if it is being put on anywhere near you, as it is a worldwide phenomenon, I would truly recommend seeing it. Egham locals can catch the final performance tonight at 7:30, location tbc due to the weather. And you can read my review here: http://theorbital.co.uk/christian-union-present-mark-drama/

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Inspiring story from Buzzfeed

I was scrolling through Facebook and found the following Buzzfeed article about a back brace.

http://www.buzzfeed.com/alisoncaporimo/steampunk-ftw?bffbmain&utm_term=.xb3BNx7Y#.qtmygRwB

The girl involved had spinal fusion after a car crash where she fractured her back, and the idea of transforming it into cosplay is something I haven’t come across before. I never had to wear a brace but if I had I would have been incredibly self conscious about it, just as I was with my raised shoe. So to anyone reading who is suffering with scoliosis and the idea of a back brace, take inspiration from Maddie and make it a really cool accessory!

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Into Film Project: 21 – The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Today is Holocaust Memorial Day, and in honour of that I watched The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas, as the suggested film (Wakolda) was too new to be available to me. I first watched the film in Year 9 when we were studying the holocaust, and I think that was of use in me rewatching it as I was prepared for the events shown. This review will be short as I don’t want to give too much away.

The film is a fantastic portrayal of the realities of the holocaust in my opinion. Although it focuses on a small camp, the atrocities alluded to in the film are reflected as larger scale occurrences – a systematic, state ordered genocide.

What gives the film its charm and emotion is that the holocaust is experienced by an 8 year old boy. The way that it was filmed was such that they maintained the innocence of the child actors until the final scenes so that the response to events depicted in the film was accurate to how children, and even adults, would have responded at the time.

Heartbreaking to watch, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is an important exploration of the events of the holocaust that should be watched by all. Four stars.

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Tomorrow

Tomorrow is many things. For a start it’s not today. More importantly it marks five years since my appointment at Guys that started my whole operation journey off properly. And tomorrow in actual real life terms is the debut of my new time slot on Insanity Radio 103.2FM. I am on air 10-11am every Thursday and it will hopefully be a good show. You can listen on FM in the North Surrey and South East Berkshire area OR you can go to http://www.insanityradio.com/listen OR use our app (search Insanity Radio on the Apple Store or Google Play) OR via tunein. You really have no excuse, and hopefully there will be a sneaky mention of my time at Guys so it’s worth listening to see if I manage to shoehorn that in (I think it depends on how awake I am and if there’s anyone there to actually stop me).

If you want to know more about my first trip to London, that info is here: https://afterscoliosis.wordpress.com/2012/12/22/first-trip-to-london/.

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Into Film Project: 20 – Peter and Wendy

This is my 20th film for my Into Film project and concerns the ITV drama Peter and Wendy. I chose this film to replace Murderball for International Day of Persons With Disabilities on 3rd December, because I felt that a heart condition is often a hidden disability and so a film following a young cardiac inpatient fits this theme.

If I could use just one word to describe this film it would be ‘magical’. It is actually incredibly hard to review because part of the charm of the film is discovering the little quirks and clever ideas for yourself as you watch it.

One thing that deserves a spoiler-free mention is the superb acting. Being set partly in a hospital, the majority of the cast are children but they were as good as, if not better than, the seasoned professionals around them. They dealt with the strong films extremely maturely and communicated the feelings they were expressing immensely well.

The cinematography was stunning, even though it was only a TV drama and the script was both poignant and funny. An early stand out line was “No-one has to apologise for crying in this place“, a greatly true statement about hospitals and one that I certainly relate to.

A film that will make you laugh and cry in equal measures, Peter and Wendy is spellbinding and a film everyone should take the chance to see. Five stars.

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Coastway

I seem to be on a bit of a posting streak, and I felt it was only fair to keep up the momentum with today’s post.

Today was my final show with Coastway Hospital Radio for the holidays, two hours of my favourite classical music. I have totalled ten hours on air with them over the last four weeks and it has been great fun.

My first show was an experience – they’d recently had a software issue and I narrowly avoided having to learn how to use a new playout system. I was slightly concerned when I arrived at the studio as the system looked completely different to how I was used to in the Insanity studio. After asking for help and then having to decline the helpful phone call because the mics were on, I got my head around it and two successful hours ensued (although I am glad there is no recording of my blip in the first few minutes!).

The last thing I had to get my head around was recording my shows, and that is something I have finally managed to do this week – you can listen to yesterday’s here: https://www.mixcloud.com/elizabeth-carr/coastway-show-3-4th-january/. The next one should be up in the next few days, in case you are looking for some relaxing classical music.

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Into Film Project: 19 – The IT Crowd

Today’s review is, again, not of a film. Back in November we saw Anti-Bullying Week from 16th and 22nd of the month (as well as Parliament Week). The suggestion from Into Film was Set Fire to the Stars but, with its recent release, I could not find a copy and so instead I have chosen to write about the Channel 4 series, The IT Crowd, which aired its final episode in 2013. I have just finished watching the entire box set on All 4, and as it follows the working life of the geeky underdogs, it seemed fitting for an Anti-Bullying theme.

Spanning 4 series and a double episode special, the IT Crowd ran from 2006 to 2010, with the final special episode airing in September 2013. It followed the careers of Roy Trenneman and Maurice Moss, two IT technicians, and their relationship manager, Jen Barber. Chris O’Dowd, Richard Ayoade and Katherine Parkinson are fantastic in their lead roles, so good in fact that I struggle to imagine them playing any other sort of character. Gawky Roy and Moss at first reflect the stereotypical character of an IT technician, but there has been great investment into their character development and the series sees them change and grow in different ways – but still keeping their original charm. There is a growth in the role of the entire

Favourite episodes for me include the first one, entitled Yesterday’s Jam, and the second, where they introduce a new emergency phone number (0118 999 881 999 119 7253). Future series’ highlights include Moss and the German, The Final Countdown and Bad Boys, particularly for O’Dowd and Ayoade’s characters. The IT Crowd is one of the few TV programmes I watch for the strength of the male characters rather than that of the female.

A superb series from Graham Linehan, with relatable characters and hilarious situations, The IT Crowd deserves five stars. It is also true that IT technicians genuinely say “Have you tried turning off and on again?”.

If you enjoyed this review, you might also enjoy this extended remix of the theme tune: http://theapexbeat.bandcamp.com/track/the-it-crowd-the-apex-beat-remix.