Michael Jackson’s This Is It.

It’s been almost eight years since MJ’s sudden passing…. He really was King of Pop. Such an incredible talent… There’s only one Michael Jackson.

Watching the film, which is comprised mostly of rehearsals, it’s so heart wrenching to see the dreams of the dancers shattered (they couldn’t believe they were about to share a stage with the one and only MJ), and to see the sweat, blood, and tears that went into the production – from the videos to the costumes to the dances to the incredible music… Sigh.

I’m also super thankful for the film, because it introduced the world to the gorgeousness that is Judith Hill. Yeah.

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Philip Seymour Hoffman.

There’s a part of me that thinks this is still just a hoax. Even though I found out via Circa. Even though it’s been reported on the New York Post and also on the WSJ. Even though BBC has now published an obituary, and James Urbaniak posted a beautiful anecdote, and Vanity Fair has an In Memoriam, which talks about oh-so-many of his wonderful films, I still can’t quite grasp it.

He really made every character he played his own, winning the Oscar (and practically every other film award under the sun) for Capote. I’m so glad we got to see his inspiring performances in every film he was in, from Boogie Nights to The Big Lebowski, Magnolia to Mission Impossible III, plus Charlie Wilson’s War, Doubt, and The Master, which earned him yet more nominations for his talent.

My thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones, especially his family. Rest in peace, PSH. You will be sorely missed.

RIP Cabal

I’m so sad that Cabal died. It’s weird, because I’ve never met Cabal. I know him only through someone else’s blog, and I don’t even really know that someone else either.

Cabal is Neil Gaiman’s dog. Neil rescued Cabal back in 2007, and they’ve been best friends ever since. Cabal was simply called Dog before he was given such a royal name, and I’ve loved reading about his adventures and seeing pictures of him…

Cabal passed away, suddenly, on 12th January. I found out today… just now, actually. Neil’s post about Cabal made me tear up, and I can just imagine how much harder it is for him.

I suppose in a way we should be happy though, because I’m sure Cabal is happily running through the woods chasing rabbits now, his back legs fully functioning no problem. But I wish I could give huge hugs to those who he left behind.

Jason Manford

Apparently, this guy is quite well-known. Comedian, presenter, author… I never knew. Anyway. I’d read about the Gary Barlow family tragedy (stillborn daughter) when it was reported in the entertainment news, yet when I watched the closing ceremony at the London Olympics and saw Take That perform (one of my favourite songs – Rule The World – which matched fireworks going off and everything), I didn’t remember. I was too caught up in the moment. Caught up in the song. Caught up in the fact that I’m in my mid-thirties and I still love Take That.

But others, like Jason Manford, remembered. And these people sent their support to him, if only via cyberspace, on a facebook status. Because they understand that, in the life of a performer, even when personal tragedy happens, the show must go on. Because there are tens of thousands of people eagerly anticipating their arrival. Because there are three other bandmates who have shared twenty years with him, and who, despite saying We understand if you want to pull out, have been waiting for this moment eagerly, excitedly. Because the rundown took months of perfecting by the organisers, and there really is no other song with lyrics quite as perfect as this one for fireworks to go off to. Because he is the consummate professional.

But of course, there are those who don’t understand. And so Jason Manford wrote the this blog post. Which I thought was so insightful (yes, I know, because I work for a performer), and so very well-written.

God bless Gary Barlow and his family.