What an Eventful evening with Eithne Browne!!
Eithne Browne could not have imagined writing such a dramatic script for the opening scene of her show – a full-scale fire evacuation of a capacity audience gathered at Blackburne House on Thursday evening!
The firecrew completed their checks of the building in a most efficient manner, whilst we all gathered in the car park of Blackburne House. Ever the trooper, Ms Browne was not going to let a lil ole thing like a fire evacuation dampen her or her audiences spirits. From the top of the grand front steps, Eithne commenced singing with such gusto that well know rallying song “Don’t cry for me Argentina” from Evita. This warmed the hearts of the shivering gathered crowd, as we willingly sang along in support of her determination-THE SHOW MUST GO ON! What a kick-start to the evenings proceedings!
Upon returning to our abandoned tables and much appreciated tasty meals, Eithne opened her session with a medley of songs such as “People Get Ready” “Carrie” “Turn me On” “Dimming of the Day” “Grandmas Hands” “Stars and the Moon” to name a few. I must admit I was very impressed with how strong her vocals were, punctuated with such feeling and emotion. Eithne was ably supported by three band members, keyboard player, guitarist/vocalist – Dave Edge/George Francis, and a young ukulele player/vocalist Keziah Hodgson, who was making her public debut that night.
The musical programme was interspersed with sketches from some of Eithne’s assumed characters, all with their own colourful stories to tell. There was “Gert” wearing the obligatory Grace Kelly inspired head scarf, with dark sunglasses befitting of her theatrical aspirations, but of “questionable” morals. Another female character, donned a red beret and spoke of the loss of her husband “Albert”, and issues around medication used to help her cope. The“Eco Lady” character was in such turmoil over the plight of our planet. Extracts of poetry from an array of authors were cleverly interwoven into the performance such as “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou.
The whole evening from start to end, took you an a roller coaster ride of emotions, and the sheer creative talent of Eithne Browne’s acting, writing, singing, musical and comic skills made the evening a night to remember. The hilarity of her characters along with responding to banter from some brave souls from the floor, had the audience in heaps of laughter throughout. Her wit and timing was a testament of many years of honing her art. The standing ovation at the end of the performance( lasting over 2 hours), was well-earned and deserved by Eithne and her fellow artists. A throughly enjoyable evenings entertainment, in a fully accessible, warm and welcoming venue. I had nothing but praise for Ms Eithne Browne and her choice of venue, housed within a wonderfully restored Grade II listed building.
It would be remiss of me not to mention the catering personnel of Blackburne House, led by Ms Lesley Lee. They were placed under enormous pressure due to an amazing turnout of a capacity crowd, along with an unscripted evacuation of the premises. Total respect for keeping your cool disposition, when that Rice and Chicken Dish disappeared in a matter of minutes – job well done!!
For further details on upcoming events at Blackburne House contact:– LesleyLee@BlackburneHouse.co.uk
Information on the History of Blackburne House: http://www.blackburnehouse.co.uk
Tel No’ 0151 708 3929
Blackburne House, Blackburne Place (Off Hope Street)
Liverpool L8 7PE