An Actors Blog . . .

Wednesday, 29 February 2012


Wolverhampton A Blaze!

Not a very good day for Wolverhampton City today. A fie at 'Carvers' yard has caused quite a distress in the City with Students having to be shipped out of their halls of residence, cars having to be abandoned on car parks, windows having to be shut all day and not to mention the huge black cloud that has been looming over the City all day. Not good at all.

On the upside I have heard that all is calm now and the fire is under control. Thank Goodness. I hope all you Wolverhamptoners stayed safe today and please remain to do so. I have been told that the Railway Station is back up and running and as are all the roads barr the slip road running down the side of 'Carvers Yard.'

Hopefully the City will pull together and get everything sorted as 'Carvers' was a pretty big place here in Wolverhampton.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Gold Challenge 2012

Raising Money for Breakthrough Breast Cancer

Some of you may remember my 'Skydive' for Breakthrough Breast Cancer back in 2010 and how much money I managed to raise. A big thank you to all those that helped me with donations for that particular event.

Well another fund raising challenge has come my way. This year, with my good friend Maria kavalieros we will be taking on 'The Gold Challenge 2012' And what a challenge it is going to be. But, I am more than excited to be doing it and the fact that I am doing it for a superb cause and charity makes my desire to push myself even stronger.

Basically the Gold Challenge is as follows:

Both Maria and I must complete 3 hours training in each of the following 30 sports:


Horse Riding,
Modern Pentathlon,
Wheelchair basketball,
Table Tennis,

So we attend a session or a few lessons in each one these sports and we then receive a certificate to say we have completed it.

It is a bit of a challenge to say the least but we have already embarked on our journey. We are looking for your help in many ways really and we will appreciate any support that we receive. It would be great if anyone could:

*Help us with the above sports. As in do you know of any clubs, coaches, trainers etc that can assist us in our 3 hour learning? A huge thank you already goes out to Wolverhampton Archers for providing us with 3 hours free archery and a local Horse riding club for giving us 3 hours free Horse Riding lessons. If you like these super companies you can help us in our fund raising mission by helping us find venues that would be super.

*Sponsor us! It would be wonderful if we could raise well above our donation target. You can sponsor us here:

I will also pop a widget onto my left sidebar which will make donating alot easier for you.

*Spread the word. Like everything - we need a little help spreading the word and letting people know about what we are doing. If you could help us with this that would be super. Why not share our just giving page on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, by email, by post etc:

Both maria and I really appreciate any support that we receive with this fund raising event. We will be keeping all our supporters updated on our just giving page by adding photographs and videos of all the sports that we have completed. We cannot wait!

The more money we can raise for Breakthrough Breast Cancer the better!

Oh and don't forget to enter yesterdays tea competition (See yesterdays blog post for details.)

Monday, 27 February 2012

Tea For Two

The Great British Cuppa (And a compeition -Sort of)

Now I enjoy a good pint, a good cider, a good glass of Vino and a good glass of many other a thing but noting quenches my thirst and desire for liquid like a good 'English Cup Of Tea' or a 'Brew' as some of you like to call it.
(Me having a brew.)

You are probably wondering why on earth I have decided to dedicate my Monday Blog Post to this cup of gorgeousness. Well - I found myself reading some tea facts this morning and it spurred me on to share my love for the bevvy and let me tell you it is BIG love.

Did you know?!? That last year us Brits guzzled 200,000,000 cups of tea a day, a day! Can you believe that. I mean that is some serious tea loving is it not? I reckon I put a pretty big dent into that figure if I am honest. I can get through a lot of tea in a day and I'm sure I am not the only one.

And ... This is where you all come in. I know you have been sat here reading this thinking "Yeah but where does the competion come in?" Well read on -

I am on the hunt for the best cuppa. Now I have heard of some pretty cool flavours in my time but I want to hear about more. So - to the one who can inform me of the greatest flavoured tea you will win the following:

* A box of my favourite tea bags! (Don't knock it - You don't know how good they are yet.)

I am looking forward to trying all these wonderful flavours of tea that you guys have got in store for me. Tis little competition will come to a close this Friday 2nd March at 11.00am so do get your entries in. :-) I will do my best to try all the tea advised.

To all those tea enthusiasts you need to check this website out:

Friday, 24 February 2012

Wolverhampton's Retro Scene

Soul, reggae, ska, funk & 50s rhythm and blues

(Firstyly, I wish to apologsie for no blog post yesterday. I was London-ing I'm afriad and the Old Playbook wasn't charged. Very much My Bad.)

Now onto this Retro Scene we have taking over the city ...

That's right! And you heard it here first folks. Wolverhampton is opening it's arms wide to accept the new scene that is two stepping it's way into the city., and even if you wanted to - It doesn't appear that anyone can stop it.

We now have a tremendous Soul Club down at the 'Newhapton Arts centre' that is just busting at the seams and now it would appear that we are lucky enough to embrace a new night in a (Sort of) new bar. The music policy for this night out is as follows - Soul, Reggae, Ska, funk & 50's Rhythm and Blues. How can you wrong with an evening full of that? I'm not sure you can. If like me this scene appeals to you (and I'm sure there is alot of you out there) then take my word for it. If this night is anywhere near as good as the 'Newampton Soul Night'' is - Then you are in for a seriously good night. One not to be missed!

If you are a Wolverhampton born and bred kind of person then I am pretty sure you will all remember what used to be the 'Little Civic' - Well this is the base for the new night that Wolverhampton is hosting. The little Civic is the room above what is now known as the 'Numa Bar' - Quite a new bar that I have heard pretty cool things about to be honest. Could go for a Bevvy there to begin your night I guess, before wandering on upstairs to do some of that old Moonstomping!

Still alot more to be confirmed on this night out ie: times etc: But WATCH THIS SPACE! (More info will be up on here as soon as one has it.)

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Blackberry Playbook

Spreading Blackberry Love ...

It is true! I wish to spread it ... I am all for it. I am Blackberry through and through I really really am!
However, I am not the sort of person that is going to waste a blog post telling you why you should invest in a playbook and not an ipad. I understand that is complete preference and most of all it comes down to 'What you like is what you like'. There is no point me disputing it or trying to push you towards something that you may not want.

But, that does not and will not stop me ranting on about my new toy. So, yes. I have treated myself to the 'Blackberry Playbook' and it really is a bundle of play. I am more than impressed with it. Since it's latest update which has allowed you to sync email, calenders, contacts and notes to it and it has opened it's self up to the ANDROID market, my love for this small device has grown. Know what else? You can now connect it to your Blackberry using Blackberry Bridge - A brilliant little tool. Basically once this has been done - Your Blackberry Playbook becomes your Blackberry. It even has BBM on it that way. Once connected you can use your blackberry to navigate your way round your playbook (As a mouse and keyboard) this is really great if you are using your Playbook for a presentation. Blackberry Bridge also allows you to use your Blackberry as a Modem, so no matter where you are you pretty much have internet connection always. Genius!

Yes it does not come without it's flaws, granted. I get that. But, dosen't everything. The Ipad cannot multi task - You can only do one thing at a time. That is a flaw. We all have them, everything has them. I can live with the flaws that the Playbook has and it really isn't many.

I know there are many a folk out there very anti the old 'Berry' but I strongly urge you to 'Not knock it before you have tried it.' If you give it a whirl and you are not a fan then fairplay. But, don't just hate because you are strongly Apple, HTC, Android etc - Give it a go, seriously!

I am interested on your views where tablets are concerned. Do you have one? Are there things you like, dislike, or wish to change about it? If so, let me know.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Shrove Tuesday

Also Known As Pancake Day ...

First things first on this glorious day. Who does not like Pancakes? I know there are a few of you out there. How there is I am unsure but I know there is. If you are not a fan of these beauties you may need to look away now. 

So it's the day before Lent begins (Ash Wednesday) and we have all gone flipping mad. It's the day to use up everything in our cupboards isn't it? Well - Our main foods (Supposedly) like Milk, sugar, eggs etc: All of these things were once restricted when Lent began you know. It was part of the fasting. You couldn't just pick on item like Chocolate to give up. You had to give up an awful lot.

Did you know that in some Catholic or Protestant Countries today is known as Mardi Gras or (and this one I prefer) - Fat Tuesday. Basically, it is a day of rich foods. So, don't just stop at pancakes man, keep it going and have the whole hog, literally.

I have been busy reading about Pancake day and the traditions that come with it and I think I'm going to host my first ever Pancake race. It's true. It's a tradition somewhere. You have to toss them whilst you run with them. Tricky business if you ask me.

Right, my final question to you is this...

What is your favourite Pancake filling? (I'm looking forward to trying some new flavours tonight so do tell all folks)

Monday, 20 February 2012

My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding

Everything Isn't Always As It Seems

Excuse the presumption that all my readers have seen this programme/documentary. I am aware that there are probably a handful of you that haven't. However, I am pretty sure you have all probably heard something about this programme and I am guessing that all you have heard is not good. I know that that is a bit of an unfair thing to say and think - I'm fully aware. But, you can't help feeling this way. Channel 4 very cleverly show you the correct footage to make things appear 'All bad'. 

After watching this programme we have all made our assumptions on Gypsies I'm sure and let's be honest Channel 4 doesn't really give you much choice in what you think and feel towards them. It has managed to plant seeds in our heads and has definitley pushed it self on to us in a way that is enough to help us create ideas.

It wasn't until recently, when i stumbled across another fellow Bloggers blog that I began to realise maybe what we are watching on a week night isn't exactly how it is. Maybe we are being led to believe something that isn't strictly true or at least not for everyone involved.

I stumbled across this Blog written by a 'Pip' who is 'not your average 17 year old Romany boy' - This is how he describes himself to his followers and after reading his blog this definitely rings true. He has some pretty strong opinions on the programme and when you read on - you really can't blame him. He explains that "Channel 4's programme is nothing but a work of Fiction' and proceeds to prove this point backed up by his own personal experiences. He also goes onto explain that the programme has pretty much ruined his life and his sisters. His sister even has had to put up with taunts and physical violence. When you read this blog post you really do start to see things in a different light. It is very easy to make presumptions and to believe what you see. But, I guess what we are seeing is just highly edited and specifically targeted. Of course channel 4 are going to make sure that they film the most outrageous people - This way they are guaranteed an audience. I think we all need to be aware that despite what we may think, what we are seeing isn't necessarily true and it isn't always fair to tarnish everyone with the same brush.

Below I have copied 'Pip's' Blog post for you all to read. I hope like me it makes you think a little differently. I'm not trying to say something is right or wrong - I'm merely stating that this blog post is great because it shows how misleading TV Documentaries can be and how deceitful this particular one has been.

If you wish to read more of Pip's Blog please visit the following:

"An Open Letter to Channel 4

Dear Channel 4,

I am writing to you with the hope that you will stop ruining my life. While your obsession with my ethnicity is flattering, it has become somewhat apparent to me that you might have gotten the wrong end of the stick. This is sort of awkward for me, because I don't want to be the one to break it to you, but your documentary, 'Big Fat Gypsy Weddings', is unfortunately a work of fiction. There is no need to be embarrassed, it can happen to the best of us, and thus I hope my letter will help you establish the facts, after all I'm sure you are passionate about fighting discrimination against ethnic minorities. Don't be modest now, we know you are...right?

It surprised me to discover that 99% of Britain's Gypsy and Traveller population are Irish. Correct me if I'm wrong, as I am sure you have done lots and lots of research on this topic, but just 10% of the Gypsy andTraveller population are actually Irish Travellers. The majority, like myself, are in fact Romany, yet your 'documentary' seems to ignore our existence. While I have nothing but respect for the Irish Traveller community, you seem to be unaware that we are two distinct ethnic groups and thus there are many differences between our cultures. While Irish Travellers originate from Ireland, we can trace our routes back to India, so it was hardly surprising that I was somewhat confused when you use the word Gypsy in the title of your 'documentary' about Irish Travellers. I was even more confused when your 'documentary' about Irish Travellers seemed to feature an alien culture that even most Irish Traveller's didn't recognise.

You correctly identified that many Gypsy and Traveller children leave school at a young age, however you failed to mention that this is not because we are all born to terrible parents, but because our communities suffer from great social exclusion. State education fails to adapt to anything but mainstream culture, thus we have to contend with a curriculum that is totally irrelevant to our way of life. Moreover, both teachers and students seem ignorant of our cultures, thus we are labelled as troublemakers and bullied for being different. The myths that you have been spreading have not helped matters. Indeed, I was subjected to physical attacks during your last series of your 'documentary' which ultimately led to my expulsion from school (long story), whilst my 12 year old cousin was beat up on her way home from school by a gang of girls who were calling her a prostitute.

As you can see, there are many reasons as to why Gypsy and Traveller children are failing to attend school, but you seem to have forgotten to feature those of us that do stay in education. Take myself, for example, I'm currently at college studying a range of subjects such as, History and Sociology. Moreover, my sister trained to be a hairdresser, my aunty went to university and is now a social worker and some of my cousins completed apprenticeships, thus clearly dropping out of education is not a prerequisite of living in a trailer.

Your 'documentary' has an unhealthy obsession with little girls. While I understand that the outfits worn by some of your younger stars could be considered a little risqué, I see only little girls having fun and dressing up for a special occasion. Your 'documentary' appears to be suggesting that we are inappropriately sexualising our children, yet the only people who are sexualising our children are the viewers who watch them and think they are sexy. In reality, our little girls can mostly be found in velour tracksuits and handmade frilly dresses, so I would suggest you should stop filming little girls dancing if you are finding that this is turning on your viewers.

After watching the last series of your 'documentary' it finally hit me why I was so unlucky in love. I would have been married by now, if only I had known that the key to a women's heart was to sexually assault her using a gypsy courting ritual called 'grabbing'. I asked my brother if he had grabbed his wife, but it turned out he had just asked her out on a date instead. It appears that in reality, no one actually knows what grabbing is, in fact Gypsy and Traveller men actually have a lot of respect for their women after all.

Speaking of love, I've been to many Gypsy and Traveller weddings, but I'm yet to attend a wedding where the bride's dress weighs more than my whole family. Don't get me wrong, I've seen some huge dresses but there is something you need to know: Thelma Madine is lying to you, she's not our dressmaker of choice. In fact, I’m kind of embarrassed for her because no one actually knows who she is and everything she says about us is actually untrue. Basically, you've been conned, so I suggest you find a new spokesperson for the Gypsy and Traveller communities, such as an actual Gypsy or Traveller like my Baba (grandma), she makes some right nice clothes you know.

It's hardly surprising that people are watching your 'documentary' purely to laugh at us, because even I laugh at the monstrosities that Thelma Madine creates. It is a shame that you haven’t featured any Gypsy or Traveller designers because the clothing that we were actually more traditionally known for before your 'documentary', is actually far more interesting than amusing. Last year, Leeds University Union thought it would be okay to laugh at the Gypsy and Traveller communities by hosting a Big Fat Gypsy Weddings fancy dress party. While the union holds events throughout the year to celebrate other ethnic minorities, your 'documentary' encouraged them to incite ethnic hatred. You'll be pleased to know that due to complaints from yours truly and friends, the event was shelved.

You seem to have misunderstood what a documentary about Gypsies should entail. Gypsies (as in Romany Gypsies that are completely different to Irish Travellers, that are like totally not Irish Travellers at all, get it?) are Europe's largest and most deprived ethnic minority. The majority of Romani people have never been to Rathkeale, let alone own houses there. In fact, most live in great poverty and I suggest you read my previous blogs. We suffer from discrimination on a daily basis and our human rights have historically been violated, yet you deem it acceptable to broadcast a misleading 'documentary' that has been made not to raise awareness of our plight but for entertainment. We are not a joke, we are human beings and your work of fiction is only strengthening stereotypes and ignorance.

Unlike those who star in your 'documentary' I am not after 5 minutes of fame, but what I am asking for, is for you to put humans above ratings. You can't ignore us forever.

Yours sincerely,


Monday, 13 February 2012


Joanne Blakemore Strikes Again!

My trusty friend with a Camera and some serious skills does a fantastic job once again. If taking superb photographs of my wedding wasn't good enough she has now managed to produce some fantastic photographs from a recent shoot we had.

The shoot was 60's styled and based around the idea of 'Twiggy-ness.' A style and model that holds the highest place in mu heart if I am honest. I find it a really inspirational style as it seemed to push an awful lot of boundaries. No jean was tight or flared enough, no shirt was tailored enough, No boot white enough and no eyelash long enough. They always seemed to go above and beyond what was possible. 

So 60's rant over and back on to Joannes Photography. For those of you that keep tabs on my blog and enjoy reading it, you will know that I have done alot of work with Joanne in the past and regularly model for her. She is a Midlands based Photographer who is just starting up (if you like) She is currently building up her Portfolio and it would be really great if any Feedback that you had could be passed on to her. So, anything you wish to share about Joannes photographs please do and I will make sure all messages are sent to her.

We are still waiting on a few photographs so I will share with you what I have. Obviously, these are of a lower resolution and size to the originals but all the same, I think you get the idea.

A big thank you goes out to Joanne for these photographs. There will be more to come soon.

Friday, 10 February 2012

Newhampton Soul Club

February's Soul Club

That's right folks - It is that time of the month again and what a time it is!

Have you got your dancing shoes on and music ears fitted? Whether you are as excited as me or not, there is no denying that this fantastic evening of soul slipping tunes is something to leave the house for.

Seriously, I am now a Newhampton Soul Club dedicated fan. I guess there is no other way of looking at it. I enjoy the boogying on down and the slippy floors not to mention the DJ's superb set. You know what - The cafe aint to bad neither. My Dad occasionally treats himself to a burger (or 2.) You can see how much I enjoyed busting my moves by checking out the following photographs from the January night. Oh, and you may have noticed me having a dance on the flyer? ... Look closer!

To find out more about the Newhampton Soul Club please follow the link below:

To book future tickets follow the link below:

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Arena Theatre Spokeswomen

The Bond Villain That is ... Berkoff

So A little while back I mentioned the Arena Theatre (My place of work) having the Legend that is 'Mr Steven Berkoff' performing on the 8th and 9th February. Well it has all been getting very exciting here at the Venue and the man himself has now arrived and is one successful show down.
From what I can gather (as I am yet to watch the performance) it is going down a storm and is utterly wonderful. To be honest - I expect nothing less from this master Villain.

I wanted to share with you the following Press Release for this show in our Local Newspaper the 'Express and Star.'

"One of Hollywood’s greatest bad guys will be in Wolverhampton this week for a rare two-night performance at the Arena Theatre.

Steven Berkoff will present a masterclass in evil on Wednesday and Thursday, February 7 and 8, 2012, when he stars in Shakespeare’s Villains.Berkoff has fashioned a career from being one of the most evil players on stage and screen.

Arena Theatre spokeswoman Jess Harper said: “Renowned throughout the world as actor, writer and director, Berkoff is known to many for the villains he has played in mainstream films – Octopussy, Beverly Hills Cop, Rambo and The Krays.”
Berkoff will look at characters who are inherently evil, whose situation leads them to evil deeds or who are at the mercy of an evil society. He will use his experience to describe dastardly Shakespearian characters in a way that will challenge and exhilarate.

Contemporary dance is also in store at the Arena, with Retina Dance presenting Layers Of Skin.
Six dancers will perform in a piece of work with original choreography from Filip Van Huffel and music from Joris Vanvinckenroye and Aranis.

Tickets are available from

Read more:"