42 Worcester – Open Mic Night (Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy) celebrated its first birthday in style Wednesday 28 March 2012 at The Lunar Bar above The Swan with Two Nicks, Worcester. The theme of Nosferatu, a classic 1922 German Expressionist horror film, directed by F. W. Murnau, starring Max Schreck as the vampire Count Orlok, was introduced by Andrew Owens and the monster mash birthday bash was off!
Worcestershire Film Festival’s Simon Munn ran a compilation of great Nosferatu shots interspersed with quotations from the film, which added to the atmosphere of the evening. Simon told of the legacy of Nosferatu and how a bootleg copy of the film secured Nosferatu’s place as a cult film. Murnau made many other films but nothing that matched Nosferatu, which, Simon said, is a ‘near lost masterpiece’.
Andrew was pleased to announce that the 42 website has been launched today, designed by Angela James www.42openmicnight.co.uk and said ’42 started 25 March 2011 and is a tribute to everyone who has ever performed and contributed to the event. This evening is dedicated to Damon Lord with condolences to Damon and his family; Damon was to have performed tonight but could not attend due to bereavement’.
Glenn and Angela James, the co-founders of 42, are suffering with flu, Glenn sent apologies, ‘So sorry not to be present, our best wishes for everyone to enjoy the evening’.
Two pieces from Glenn James were read, the first started off with a dramatic ‘ATTEND!’ followed by an explanation of Nosferatu, which included the lines ‘We are the descendants of those bards in the firelight, we are the story-makers and the weavers of nightmare’. This was followed by Founding Fathers Glenn’s story set in an auditorium with two thirds of the audience undead and a cool comment on the number of broken mirrors.
Gothic Diva Suz Winspear was the very first performer at 42, tonight Suz read Sapphires about a relationship with ‘the only one I have ever loved’ a man with white hair ‘almost luminous in the moonlight’. This piece could almost have been called ‘Confessions of a Vampire’, a great story that kept to the theme of the evening.
Ian Ward followed Suz. Ian is a regular performer at 42 and said his inspiration comes not from Dracula or Nosferatu but rather from Buffy the Vampire and True Blood. Ian read five separate pieces; one described humans as ‘domesticated blood donors’, another referred to ‘tough conversations’, and one told that vampires have feelings too, in which the line ‘the swish of her silks and satins’ stood out.
The break gave everyone the opportunity to chat, some had seen ads at the University of Worcester and Glenda and Jim had seen the article in the Worcester Standard, it was great to see new people present alongside the regulars.
Andrew Owens opened the second set with his story about being a vampire and not being able to bask in the sunlight or enjoy a sunrise – all about a lost soul who resents the living.
Michael R. Brush read his short story involving a werewolf and Sherlock and Mycroft Holmes and Moriarty ‘the inhabitants of a Scottish keep’, followed by the third part of four from his serial – we’re all looking forward to the final part of this great sci-fi story in April at Ludi Cereales, the celebration of Spring ‘around the campfire’ event at Hillcrest, Worcester.
William Shatspeare is a renowned poet who performs at The Sunday Express in Digbeth and The Hollybush, a great set from William incorporating Richard III and Buddy Holly, even a poem called Lunar Sea Blues, very fitting for an event in The Lunar Bar. We loved the short poem about an androgynous, rum-drinking Haitian Spirit and a Mermaid linking fates and creating quakes.
John Taylor performed two poems tonight. A Life Vampyric ending with the lines ‘The moral of this tale? With maidenhood a dying trend / Occasionally a bloody steak is sometimes your best friend’ and The Plains of Lhee. Great to hear John’s work, we’re more used to him introducing other performers at 42.
Raine Evans was next up with his story My Killing Lifestyle Part 1 – Raine said he had intended to read Part 2 – there was empathy in the room when Raine explained that the Xbox was responsible for him not managing to complete it!
Andrew Owens’s short story Haunting Remorse told of a son who died, a wife who died, and the haunting remorse that followed. Finally, Polly Robinson got back to the theme of Nosferatu with her poem He Drinks Blood.
John finished the evening with a reminder that Ludi Cereales, a celebration of Spring around the campfire with 42, Parole Parlate and Worcester Vigornia Rotary, takes place at Polly’s place in April, and thanked everyone for their contributions tonight. Our regular contributors from USA could not be included on this occasion as time simply ran out. Next time!
Polly Robinson © 2012