So Mrs Chrisparkle and I had a quick nap in our hotel room after seeing Shirley Valentine, and then a Marks and Spencer Chicken Salad (and I had a Pork Pie too) before meeting Michelle and going to the Shadow Lounge for the UK Preview Party. This is the third such event, in a smaller venue this time; while the first party had been a relative financial success (ie I think it didn’t make a loss) the second was not so successful and the prospects for a third looked in doubt; step in John and Paddy to come to the rescue.
At the front of the queue to get in, we met David, who was even earlier in the queue, and then a strange Welshman starting quizzing us about what we were going to see. He must be the real person on whom Gavin and Stacey’s Uncle Bryn is based. Then Niamh popped her head out of the front door and gave us a wave – I gave her a wave back – and unfortunately didn’t get to speak to her again (yes I was the only person to miss out on that pleasure, regrettably).
Eventually we got in, and we spent the evening with (deep breath) Adam, Adam, Mark, Michael, Andy, Liam, Tiina, Tristan & his lady, Dean, Gerry, Paul, Rory, John, Richard, Chris, Juha, David and Andrew Schlagerboy, Mark, John, Robin, Monty, Nico, Franko, Iain, Jody, Adrian, Tom, Paul… there will be others, sorry if I have missed anyone.
First up was Jon Lilygreen and the Islanders, a band from Newport representing Cyprus, who got on famously with everyone and had a raw appeal, having and giving out lots of fun. Then we had Paula and Ovi from Romania, who suffered from bad microphonage unfortunately (but I still think their song is great!); Josh for the UK sang his song and it was the first time I had heard the new version, which I think is an improvement (although I still don’t like the end) – Josh is an excellent singer and comes across as a really nice guy; and finally Niamh for Ireland, who has rapidly become at least two nations’ favourite Eurovision singer and held us all in the palm of her hand. All the acts were introduced by Paddy in his own inimitable style.
A bit too crowded for Mrs C and I to venture on the dance floor but it was great to meet up with friends and enjoy the vibe. Less than three weeks to go before the first Semi Final!! Need to start preparing the party!