The Autumn of #LoveLoveLove – Part 2: Stage Door Confusion

It seems as if this is a ritual for me by now – my real account of a stage door experience, including my own feelings and conclusions, always take much longer to commit to the blog than the ironic commentary via a fake review. It appears that after all these years, I still am not fully reconciled with outing myself as a fan by way of attending the stage door. Part of the problem is that I find it hard to tell what exactly I am feeling when I look at the SDs in retrospect. But maybe that *is* the dominant feeling, confusion – because that has been my reaction every time I have been to *see* RA somewhere, whether it is on stage or at a premiere, and no matter whether it was Berlin 2013, London 2014, Leeds 2015, or New York 2016. So maybe I will just tell it as it was – and see whether I come to a conclusion of my confusion. [Reminder: Please don’t take any criticism contained herein as a personal accusation. Just my own thoughts on what I saw.]

Stage Door 1 – Thursday, November 3rd

At my first LLL SD I actually came as an impostor. Because I did not have a ticket for the show that evening. I had flown into NYC the day before to attend a conference the company I work for organises every autumn in New York.  Thursday was the day of the company event, and I had not bought a ticket for that night’s performance because I wasn’t sure whether I’d get out of work in time for it. As it happened, the conference was over by 6pm and I went with my bosses and a few attendees for drinks. I usually don’t drink alcohol, but this time I did and was subsequently a bit drunk. That was why I made the sudden, unpondered decision to actually race it over from a pub in 23rd St all the way to 46th because I realised I could just go to the SD and meet Linda60 there (with whom I was staying in the hotel). So, still dressed in my business outfit and branded by my conference badge, I legged it and got there well in time before the end of the show.

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I was the first person to arrive outside the theatre and took the opportunity to take a few pictures, after all I was still lugging my camera bag with me. I waited at the seating area opposite the entrance to the theatre; no one was standing by the barrier yet. But I was soon joined by another woman who quickly outed herself as a fan. She told me her name was Rebecca and she had seen the play multiple times. When she eventually took position at the barriers around the time the play was supposed to end, I followed her lead and stood beside her, right opposite the doors. Since I had come unprepared, I offered her to hold one of the Playbills and get Armitage to sign it.

It took about 20 minutes until RA exited the theatre that night. By that time the line had filled out, but I was actually quite surprised to see only between 15 and 20 people at the SD. Upon exiting, Armitage immediately launched into SD mode, went down the line and signed everything that was offered to him. It all looked very much like I had seen in all the photos and videos by fans who had been there before me – Armitage smiling and signing, politely thanking fans for the compliments, swiftly moving down the line of fans, occasional stops for a quick selfie. As he reached me, all I could really say was “thank you” – after all I hadn’t even seen the play yet. Stage door hijacker! Even though I was really calm for a change – thanks to a couple of pints of Guinness and the un-pre-pondered decision to do the SD even without having seen the play, I suppose – I didn’t really register what he said, what he wore, and what happened around me. It was over way too fast. The whole SD literally took less than 60 seconds! I wasn’t disappointed, though, because I was distracted by all my fan friends who were assembling around me and with whom I then went for a drink in the Irish pub across the street. But I was totally on a high because reasons. And really pleased because I had done Rebecca a favour by getting the playbill signed for her.

Highlights:

  • Saw RA unexpectedly
  • Helped out a fellow fan
  • Post-SD meet-up

Stage Door 2 – Friday, November 4th

I was better prepared on Friday night – and in high spirits, after having just watched the play for the first time. I had really enjoyed it, although I had feared the worst after what I had heard about the play in advance. This time I had my copy of the boo ready for RA to sign. It was sheer luck that I got to stand at the top of the queue because I didn’t really race out of the theatre to get there. When I left through the doors, they had not closed the barrier directly opposite the door, so I exited there because some of my fan friends were standing close by. It then just turned out to be the top of the queue, although I hadn’t even aimed for that.

Mimi video’ed the procedure for your pleasure 😉

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun❗️#lovelovelove #AmyRyan #RichardArmitage #NYC #roundabouttheatre

A video posted by Mimi Cruz (@mimicruzc) on Nov 4, 2016 at 11:05pm PDT

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Like the previous night there were between 15 and 20 people there – a manageable number of fans, which to me seemed to ensure that everybody was going to get what they wanted, a signature, a selfie, a chance to say a few words to RA. Waiting for him to appear, I was quite distracted by the whole scenario. Many people I knew were there, and we were all burning to discuss the play. When RA eventually turned up, he headed straight over to me to start signing. And this is where my memory gets hazy, despite video evidence of the whole thing *cringe*. I  think I said something like “That was brilliant, I really enjoyed the play”, but I don’t think he replied anything, just signed my book, for which I thanked him. I don’t know what it is with me, but I didn’t even look up at him or anything – for some weird reason I just feel too shy to do that. Don’t look at the sun… No wonder I didn’t get a reply. There was a funny little exchange between RA and Kathy Jones further down the line, which she may want to tell you about herself. I missed it because I didn’t even stay at the barrier to observe the rest of the SD procedure. I can see from Mimi’s video that I was grinning like a pig that has just found the biggest truffle ever, but I don’t think there were any coherent thoughts in my mind for about 5 minutes after that. In any case, Armitage quickly finished going through the line, towards his waiting car, and whizzed off.

Highlight:

  • great spot at SD
  • got my copy of LLL book signed
  • post-SD chats

Stage Door 3 – Saturday, November 5th

This time, I only made it out of the play rather late even though I hadn’t lingered in the theatre. But the line behind the barriers was already completely packed. Saturday night fever, I suppose. It was much busier than after the previous two shows. Fans were standing three, four deep at the barrier, and I immediately decided that I was not going to add myself to the throng. After all I had already had a couple of “encounters” (if you can call the blurry split second of RA passing by that) and I was hoping for another occasion when I returned for the play Sunday and Tuesday. So I stood back and watched from afar, together with Obscura. I felt actually relieved because I did not like the idea of standing in the big crowd and having to wrestle my way to the front of the barrier.

We have video footage of that night, courtesy of Judiang:

Because of the larger number of people attending, the SD was much more energetic in terms of fan activity. I reckon there were 50, 60 people there. Even before RA came outside, it was difficult to find a space near the front. I watched the spectacle from behind the whole assembly of fans, a buzzing kind of throng over which you could hardly see RA’s head. Even though he is a head taller than most of the ladies. He had his head bent down to sign and to pose and to listen to the thank yous that were thrown his way. While previous SDs had been fairly calm and quiet save for the occasional elated giggle of a happy fan,  this time there was much movement as latecomers pushed their way to the front and others, who had been at the top of the SD line left their spot to rejoin the line further down again. Armitage spent a little longer interacting with a group of Asian fans, and it was nice to see that because they had come such a long way to pay their attention to their favourite actor.  However, that evening, the whole SD looked a bit unpleasant to me. I don’t really suffer from claustrophobia, but the set-up with a heaving throng of people just didn’t appeal to me. I deliberately and willingly stayed out of the way of it even though I would’ve liked another opportunity to express my admiration to RA, just like any other fan.

Highlights:

  • longer SD
  • opportunity to observe from a distance
  • big meet-up post-SD

In Conclusion

Those three nights were the only SD opportunities where Armitage actually came out to meet his fans. I had two further tickets for the play for Sunday and Tuesday. Both times he did not do the stage door – Tuesday was election night, and Sunday was a matinee, on the day of the New York Marathon. He had been doing the Sunday matinees prior to that, so I was disappointed that he did not this time, but well, I accept that it is his call to make. The man has a life and a mind of his own, just like we all do. And he has good days, bad days, and sometimes maybe just doesn’t feel up for it. Fair enough. The disappointment then, that inevitably comes with it, is a reflection of individual fangirl expectations, and guilty as charged – I somehow had hoped for the luck of the same uninterrupted run of SDs that he did in London. Not here.

What about that confusion then? What is it about the SD experience that is so difficult to put into perspective? Standing back one night, gave me the opportunity to observe the scenario. And if I am brutally honest with you, I am not really sure that I liked all that I saw. Don’t get me wrong – I am a fan, and I like to be part of the fandom, and I like fangirling. I don’t have a problem with the SD as a form of expressing one’s admiration of an actor. I think it is the most honest and immediate way of showing the celebrity in question that we are interested, appreciative and impressed. (And I trust that Armitage’s continuing willingness to meet his fans at the stage door means that he understands that and wants to facilitate that.) However, the parameters of the SD on that particular night were just not what I consider ideal for my own participation, and I perceived much of it as intrusive and inconsiderate. I don’t know whose fault it was, whether it is due to the logistics (too short a barrier line; RA too fast; number of fans too large) or whether my criticism is subjective because I felt excluded.

Some of it was the perceived atmosphere of “every woman for herself” as it was clear that RA was not going to be able to grace everyone with his attention, his signature and a selfie. There wasn’t exactly a stampede, but I think it was an occasion where you had to be pretty stable on your feet and hold your ground. I do not remember perceiving the experience quite like this at the SD in London where there were regularly even *more* people in the line than on this particular night in NYC. While RA acted/reacted much the same in NYC and in London, I can only surmise that it was the set-up that was better suited in London. There was a longer space for fans to form a line in, the security guard accompanied Armitage along the line of fans – even without the need of a barrier, and more fans were able to briefly interact with RA. Ultimately, I found the Saturday night SD frustrating to watch – on behalf of those who did not get their moment, on behalf of the celebrity who might *want to* fulfil his fan’s expectations but has his own life/rules/commitments, on behalf of my own crushed expectation.

I continue to have a massive problem myself with photography at the SD – something I simply can’t bring myself to do. How utterly weird is that for a photographer? Granted, I am not and never will be a press photographer. And neither is this to imply that shooting at the SD is paparazzi behaviour. It is a public event in a public space, semi-organised but with professional security in place, and thus implies the consent (by the celebrity) to capture the moment “on film”, much like a premiere or a red carpet. Not sure whether my profession makes me more sensitive to the obvious issue of “photographing vs experiencing”? Ultimately that is why I choose not to shoot: I would rather be *in* the moment, than see the moment filtered through the screen of my smartphone/viewfinder of my camera. And since being photographed makes me feel incredibly uncomfortable myself (a symptom of vanity, no doubt), I tend to feel bad for the sake of the people who are being photographed in situations where they are uncomposed, unposed. But when I get back home, I kick myself for not taking pictures. Confusing. Schizo! There, I can’t be helped.

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However, I refuse to taint the SD with negative memories. When I look at my highlights list, I can say that the constant joy of it all was meeting fellow fans at the SD. Genuinely! And so the conclusion really is, that the SD is a great place to meet and have fun with fellow fans. Discussing the play we had just seen, meeting new people just because we were all in the same boat, united by our shared interest in Armitage, comparing the size of our Armitage memoRAbilia collection at home – never was it easier to start chatting to strangers. I remember most fondly the 20 minutes *before* Armitage came out, when there is the loud buzz of excited chatter and this high tension of expectation. Is he going to come out? Will he sign? Will I get a selfie with him? How much time is going to spend with us? Is he going to prove his sensational taste in male leg-wear again? – Then there is the short duration of the actual SD encounter between Armitage and his fans, during which you can almost tangibly feel the massive joy and happiness on the side of the fans, sort of like a cloud of warmth. The heart beats of the assembled fans collectively sped up and beating in unison? 😉 What a show of love! Oh, to be the recipient of that! There is the touching, sudden hush once he appears, as everyone is now distracted by his appearance outside. – And afterwards there is the happy sound of giggles and laughter, fans feeling elated because they got a signature or selfie or even just a glimpse of the man, and people lingering long after Armitage has gone, just because they are communicating, chatting, talking, comparing notes on the play and the SD, making plans for meet-ups etc. All *that* raised my spirits every time, put a huge smile on my face and made my day. It is what I took home with me from the SD – a lovely end to every day I was there. And based on the fact that we even had SD fun on the days when Armitage did *not* come out to meet and greet (picture evidence withheld), I can safely say that the SD does not even depend on Armitage’s cooperation. It is what *you* make it, yourself.

So, overall I come away with a good feeling. Much of that is due to Armitage – he really does the best *he* can, and to me it looks evident that he is doing this as a service to fans. He could probably increase the buzz exponentially by taking a little bit more time – and reap the rewards in enthusiastic fan activity all over the internet and at the box office, but I’m glad he is doing it at all. He deserves a medal. Your cue, Kathy!

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117 thoughts on “The Autumn of #LoveLoveLove – Part 2: Stage Door Confusion

  1. I’m glad you got to go and see it…. and with Mimi and kathy???? Lucky lucky buggers!

    now I feel left out. Sigh. Ah well. I shall continue to live vicariously through my friends.

    (Personally, I wouldn’t’ want to be on the streets on Election night. Meh.)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, it worked out that way. I was very lucky, you are right, because I was fixed in terms of dates to that particular weekend.
      As for election night – I was surprised how quiet it was. There was no visible reminder that the fate of the country was just being decided… that all happened the next night…

      Liked by 2 people

      • Someday, maybe he’ll do WAAAAY OFF Broadway in here Savannah. There is QUITE the active arts community here. Lots of music and theater and art. Really.

        There is still grumbling and protesting here. I’m hoping it’s starting to calm down. i’ve not looked at the news since the weekend. Someone on Twitter made a rather astute observation – You wouldn’t wish ill on the pilot flying your plane, would you? Tom Hanks as w ell. He said something REALLY positive the other day about it that really made my respect for him (Tom Hanks) go up. It’s going to be a doozy of a 4 years, that’s for sure.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Off Broadway Savannah – *coughs* ok, if you believe it hard enough, maybe that will happen… Meanwhile, I keep hoping that the Gate or the Abbey in Dublin will exert some sort of magnetic pull to RA, too…

          Liked by 2 people

        • Did anyone watch SNL with Dave Chapelle a week ago? His opening monologue was funny but near the end he made some unexpected positive insightful comments. I agreed with the sentiment he articulated that it made my opinion of him (Chapelle) go way up. Anyway, it is out of my hands so I’m hoping for the best.😈

          Liked by 1 person

            • Yes, it is on YouTube! Here is a link:

              His monologue is over 11min and I think he is funny, but his humor may not be for everyone. I have witnessed a lot of what I think is extreme emotional reaction to the election. I personally was not happy with the result, but am personally not a emotionally invested in things I cannot control. I single handedly cannot change the result so will expect the worst and hope for better. It is politics. . . it is never gonna be all good 😈

              Liked by 1 person

              • I wouldn’t have been happy with EITHER one of them winning, so I wasn’t disappointed. I am disappointed in the behavior of many of the protesters – most of them didn’t vote, weren’t registered to vote and are using their ‘anger’ to damage property.

                It’s funny – on Facebook, I had an entry from a writer that I follow, all upset by Trumpkins denouncing the elongated protests – after all it’s our First Amendment Rights! But the post immediately following it, was news footage of the destroyed brand new Toyotas – someone took rocks and baseball bats to them, breaking out windshields, back windows, damaging the chassis – damaged by protesters. Forgive if I’m wrong, but I don’t think those cars voted for Trump.

                Creating human chains to block streets. That’s not a protest. That’s stupidity!

                I didn’t vote for Obama either time. I didn’t riot in the streets. I’ve complained loud and hard about the sky-rocketing cost of my health insurance and when he was voted in the first time, I was told rather testily that I would survive 4 to 8 years of Obama. Funny thing is people came on MY wall, MY page to say it. If I say it on THEIR wall, THEIR page, I’m a horrible human being and get unfriended and blocked really fast.

                Needless to say, I’ve cleaned up my friends list as of late and didn’t hardly do nuttin’ ‘cept be myself!!! LOL!

                Liked by 1 person

                • When I got back from NYC the morning after the election, I immediately saw people using the results to behave badly, be it not showing up to work, destroying property, fighting, etc.

                  No one takes responsibility for their commitments/obligations anymore. It is always someone else’s fault for their bad behavior any excuse is good. I’ve no time or respect for those people.

                  Sadly, those narrow minded people can never see or accept other views but their own. Reason will never penetrate thru that mindset. Yes, I agree, you should get rid of them off your ‘friends’ list. 🌻

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • Our current administration has encouraged these forms of ‘protest’ and it hasn’t helped anything or anyone.

                    I have said it so many times – I weep for my country. All I can do is pray for a better tomorrow.

                    Liked by 1 person

  2. First, Ode To Stage Door Blues (an ode written about the night immortalized on Judiang’s video)

    I was too slow,
    Getting out of the show.
    And ran out of time,
    For a good spot in line.
    He was far from my reach,
    But maybe I’d get, a glimpse of a peach?
    Just a hint of a curve,
    On which I could perv.
    But I wanted to cry,
    Because like Daniel the spy,
    I was sad to discover,
    They were both undercover.

    Kathy Jones

    Liked by 7 people

  3. The rest of the story.
    I explained in a previous comment about the medal/metal mishap with Richard at the stage door. The group had a few laughs about it (at my expense I might add). In honor of that humbling encounter and to make sure Richard was happy (because he was obviously disappointed that there was no medal) Guylty and her accomplice presented me with a medal (pictured above) to give to Richard. I was unable to give it to him that night. My next opportunity was a Sunday matinee. By that time I had found a suitable box to put the medal into, with the inscription “For Meritorious Acting” on the lid. Thanks to Mimi’s silver sharpie. At that time he was still doing the stage door so we waited patiently and hopefully to have another opportunity to have a fan encounter. Eventually, a security guy came out and announced Richard would not appear. Crap. Trying to make lemons out of lemonade, I thought we could have our own stage door encounter, complete with medal presentation. So I pulled a cap down low over my forehead, got on the celebrity side of the barrier with a sharpie, and went down the line impersonating Richard. I was told my “thank you’s” were superb. I was suitably thrilled when the medal was presented to me. By that time we were laughing hysterically. That was my last night in NYC and it was so much fun. I loved the play and of course seeing RA, but hanging out with my fellow fan girls was the best. Love you guys.

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Thanks for posting this: I felt the same way, having been at SD Crucible which left me feeling overwhelmed, so this time I just stood back (11/4) and observed, still very overwhelmed and privileged, but something was missing and I agree it was the set-up, compared to The Old Vic.

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    • Hi Seekers – good to know I was not the only one with that impression. I acknowledge that any SD experience is only a snapshot, and any perception of it is individual. But you put it very well – feeling overwhelmed, yet privileged. So did I. Pity I missed you there 🙂

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  5. Thanks so much for acting as roving reporter for those of us not able to join in the fun and buzz in person. I missed my chance by a few short days 😦 so I appreciated this account all the more. A pity RL is not like video, so you could have run the SD in slo-mo.

    Loved Kathy’s Ode. She is the rhyming queen!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Glad to share the fun – it’s useful for me, too, because it means I can record what happened. While I was writing this up, I was already kicking myself that I had not taken any notes in NYC. I had trouble remembering everything.
      Kathy’s ode will have to be rescued and posted in a separate post. It’s just too good to be buried in the comments…

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  6. I took a lot of pictures this time with my phone, which I didn’t last time, so that was a change for me, but I think the bigger change for me was that after the first night, when I got an autograph, I didn’t even stand in the line; I backed out to do my observing. I think this is because my emotional reaction to this play was totally different from my reaction in London (I still had a strong reaction, but a really different one), and so did not trigger the reaction in London (that frightened and disturbed me at the time). I can’t imagine, though, that I would ever not be interested in observing what happens there.

    It’s interesting that you feel a massive surge of love and joy from fans when comes out, because that is the opposite of what I felt: anxiety, jealousy, worry, and a low level of aggression. (Another reason I’d rather observe than participate actively.) That was the same in London and New York for me. Meeting other fans is not a reason for me to go to a stage door, at least at this point. I had a really positive anonymous conversation with a fan whom I did not already know in the theater on one occasion, but that was it (I was mostly seated next to non-fans, anyway). For that reason, but not only for that reason, I like that that barrier is there in NYC (and I couldn’t believe there wasn’t one in London at the time, but perhaps that’s just a cultural assumption / difference) even if I acknowledge that the space situation outside that particular theater is suboptimal for fans. I don’t think he was or is in danger from fans, but I think it was good for everyone that there was more space around him in this setting.

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    • The barrier did not really bother me as such, I have to say. I agree with you that it kind of works in that it gives him space to manoeuvre. It worked very well the first to times I attended the SD – because there were only as many fans there as fit along the barrier. On the third SD occasion, there were way more fans than before – and that’s when it became disorderly. A longer line would’ve been better imo, but well, the space dictates the line…
      As for the perception of positive or negative energy – I have to admit that there was some anxiety palpable at the crowded Saturday SD, too. Again, because the space did not accommodate all fans. Maybe I did not feel it so acutely because I had stepped back and removed myself from the situation. What is definitely noticeable is the way the energy is singularly focussed on *him*. I always wonder how that looks and feels from the other side – is it pleasant, flattering and nice to feel this surge of “lurve” coming his way, or is it frightening? I don’t mean that as in “harmful” or “violent”, but with the love comes a lot of expectation. That could be a bit of a burden…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Here is an ode from the dark side of the Stage Door

        Ode to Misery

        Richard deserved a really nice gift,
        A special something to give him a lift.
        So when he came near,
        My message was clear.
        “Hey mister man,
        I’m your number one fan!”
        His sharpie was ready,
        Then he became quite unsteady.
        He ran for his car,
        Which wasn’t too far.
        “Richard!” I called to his fast-moving rear,
        “You forgot your acting medal, my dear.”

        Kathy Bates Jones

        Liked by 3 people

      • There was another difference to London (re: all the energy is focused on him): In London the fans were also really supportive of other cast members; I mostly did not observe that in Nyc.

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        • True, there was a lot of interest in the other cast members in London. Photos taken etc. Mind you, there was spontaneous applause for Zoe, Alex, Ben in NYC, too, and requests for autographs.

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          • IMO, not even close in proportion to the smaller numbers of SD-waiters, though. Some times they didn’t even get a cheer when they exited, which other cast members always got in London. This SD audience had a much more singular focus. I think in the end I liked the atmosphere in London more, as I think about it. But I also heard fans in NYC trashtalking other people at the SD on every night except one in NYC, which was more or less the reverse of London, where I heard only one negative comment of this type. Anecdata, naturally, but telling for me.

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            • Trashtalking – as in gossiping about fellow fans? o_O Hm, that passed me by. Not sure whether that is because I was singularly focussed on getting my autographs, or whether I am to naive to notice. (Or whether my hearing is bad…)

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              • yes, making negative comments about other people who were allegedly taking unfair advantage, jumping in line, keeping other people from getting what they wanted (or likely to), etc.

                I think your post makes clear to me that you were much more involved as a participant in what was going on than I was. I also agree that the action of focusing on taking a picture alters one’s focus on what’s going on around one. On the night that I was really focused on that, I had fewer observations about what other people around me were saying / doing.

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          • Also, thinking in retrospect — on the night that there was that large group of Asian fans, I heard at least three people say mean things about them specifically. At the time, I thought, well, this is just a standard American trope of complaint, but I have to admit that in the wake of what’s happened in the U.S. in the meantime, I view it quite differently.

            Like

  7. Pingback: ICYMI: Guylty’s takes on Richard Armitage at the #LLLPlay stagedoor | Me + Richard Armitage

  8. Lovely! Thanks so much for sharing your experiences at the Love3 stage door and with fellow fans. For me, I think it would be enough to enjoy seeing Richard Armitage and colleagues in a play–especially this one–and, perhaps glimpse him from afar at the stage door. I’m short anyway, and mostly sitting these days. So I would just hang back with my periscope. Ha! And since I can’t afford to travel to see the play, I’m in the camp hoping that they film it for distribution! Cheers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am keeping my fingers crossed for a recording. It would make a lot of people very happy.
      And yeah, with all the SD discussion happening, I am forgetting about the play. Best thing: 2 hours 5 minutes of looking at Armitage. He’s in almost all of the scenes…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Interesting read, thanks for sharing! This ‘every woman for herself’ feel, I felt some of that in London as well. I think that tends to happen more evidently when it gets more crowded.

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    • Funny, I didn’t catch that kind of feeling in London. There was some of that in Leeds, though. My conclusion is, that it happens when the situation is disorganised, i.e. when there is no clear line, or when there is not enough time. That’s when people become anxious and blinkered…

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      • I was at The Old Vic on a Saturday night at the time, mid-July. It never got scary but it was really busy that night, lots of people, and there was this sense of excitement and people trying to get to Richard again after he had already passed them and spilling over into the street where cars were also trying to pass. He was very calm , though, and efficient and friendly. I think his calm, friendly demeanor helped in keeping everyone else calm.

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        • Yes, he really sets the tone, doesn’t he? He always appears really calm and polite, willing to participate and friendly – and that kind of translates into a message on how the whole event should be conducted. It’s common sense, really, but he is doing that really well.

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  10. Boy that corner of street looks dark! Was it as dark as it appears in the photos? I guess i’m just so used to come into very well lit and busy streets (which doesn’t look like either…) it’s probably spread out over a bigger area of town and maybe less busy as night than round here. Just talking from looking at the pictures and curious 🙂 Comparisons are inevitable 😉

    I think these experiences are always best lived in a group or at least with some friends! To share the joy, to talk about the play for hours to lift you up from your Mordor or red carpet 😉 It frames the whole experience in shared joy 🙂 Don’t think i would have enjoyed the Crucible as deeply on my own, i was lucky i never went alone but always managed to have a friend to chat to.

    I will never forget the C SD, it was i think apart from a very few situations where i have had a SD to myself or myself and 3-4 oters max by far the best ever. It was and will always remain given the size of crowds the best ever. The circumstances, the way it was organised, the mood of the play, the time of the year, they were all very positive factors in making it pleasant. Even the way some of the other cast engaged with it and allowed us to engage with them. And i have to say that would not have been possible had there been any barrier at all. I’m personally not used to them and they tend to be a factor which pushed me away from them, make me feel unwelcome. Although it is clear that is not the case here 🙂 In my other side of the world so to speak they never exist and it would un-conceivable to have them, i’m just to used to their absence. But i support them when the numbers are so big it could be a security issue. In that world age in fandom is an element which plays into it although i’ve experienced a few crushes.

    But yes, in London i expected the worst given the number and my previous experience and certainly got the best 🙂 It’s as present in my mind today as the day it happened 🙂 No caps in sight to obscure eyes either or expressions ;-)))

    But really the best fun i’ve had at SD or just a good unstressed time was always when i didn’t want anything and just went along for a lookie or whatever else might come out of it. As soon as i go in wanting something, or even just wishing it tends to go wrong. In Leeds i felt overwhelmed by the crowds and it all came back to me about not feeling comfortable asserting myself and i did feel frustrated for not getting my ticket autographed which i very much wished for. In hindsight however it was pleasant just for seeing him interact with people with patience, openness and kindness. Pics i have seen so far seem to confirm what i felt with him near me twice now (even if i am definitely incapable of making use of his openness to achieve anything LOL). He’s totally there for ‘us’ , totally willingly, friendly, openly and forthcoming. He really is there to give and i don’t mean that i any condescending way at all. It’s something that drew my attention in London already as in my experience just from the vibe, if you will from his emotion and what comes off him when he is there is equal footing. It isn’t in practicality but he does it in that spirit. You really can feel a sort of gratitude and desire to give something, not back but respond with something he sees is desired 🙂 I’ve seen way more effusive people who are just more extroverted by nature (bless opera stars and their personalities, larger than life ;-)) but where the positions are never equal. Or even more so different people get different treatments/reactions and it’s just a given. Not in his case and i value that enormously because it is conscious and deliberate and simply giving. The only other person i’ve seen/felt something of that sort was Placido Domingo. Who’s SD i’ve never done closeby,always wrong timing ie 1am LOL. But i’ve seen the love there, totally mutual and humbling in it’s own way:-)
    And i’ve seen too many situations where the photographing is too much for the person etc and there is the gritting your teeth and getting through it. And i totally get why that can be disturbing. Although i myself feel split about it since i love seeing other people’s pics and sometimes also videos – we all live vicariously through them when we can’t be there 🙂
    To not let that phase you in any way and accept it as part of the situation without letting it deter you or change your mood or your attitude towards the SD commitment takes a lot.

    I think what i am trying to say in a very roundabout way, is that the nicest part about it apart from sharing the experience with friends is the way he does it 🙂 And if i ever in the years to come should get an opportunity to be around a SD again this is what i will bear in mind or try my hardest to focus on, not what i might want and try not to want something specific but focus rather on him and how he does it. Because even if circumstances didn’t allow for a 1-1 second it’s because of circumstances, his willingness was always there. And for me that almost counts most because it is not an automatism, it’s not the natural expression of an effusive extroverted chatty person, it is conviction and dedication 🙂 And it’s something i respect and really like him for 🙂

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    • yeah, it’s dark. Most of the lighting comes from inside the theater (complicating the photo situation). There’s a street light there, too, but it’s fairly dark. Not, however, in the least dangerous.

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    • The space in front of the theatre is a little square, slightly set back from the street. There are buildings on three sides of it, which makes it a bit dark, yes. There is no light source apart from the light in front of the theatre – it didn’t really feel particularly dark, though, when you stand there…
      I completely agree with you that the fun of the SD is best had with a group of friends, or at least one other friend there. Back in London, I had the SD experience in three different ways. The first time I was there, it was just me and my friend. We had fun, although we were both making fun of ourselves for being there at all. Second time there were 4 of us, and it already felt a bit better because there is safety in numbers. The third time, there were even more people around me, and that made for a fun, completely non-awkward experience. The conclusion: The more, the merrier…
      I find it very interesting what you say about the comparison of Richard’s SD behaviour and other celebs’, and that he is very “giving” in comparison with others. I don’t really have that comparison because I have never really done an SD for anyone else. I take your word for it, especially as it was my impression that RA certainly is doing the SD because he knows his fans wish for it. However, I *do* have the impression that he doesn’t find the whole procedure incredibly comfortable. And I do think that it *is* possible to give a little more, if he wanted to. I am not saying that he has to, only that with a little more time gifted to the SD, he’d take his popularity to the next level. If you think of the reason why so many of us really got into him – the discovery of his old correspondence/interaction with the fandom in the early days – you’ll know what I mean. The SD in NYC took maybe a minute and a half on average. Just imagine if he doubled that time – which is still only 3 minutes out of his day… I am just saying this, not *demanding* it. It’s something that I wish he’d consider…
      Nonetheless, I completely agree with you – the great thing is that he does it at all, regardless of what his own reservations about the SD may be.

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      • Definitely the more the merrier 🙂 I think having friends around you to share it with is so much part of it, because otherwise it can be a slightly un-friendly place, the vibe of the people around you can make all the difference. And the more SD you see and experience the better it gets in a way, at least that is what i think 🙂

        I can’t actually say his early communications came into it very much, i only found them much much later.. I think the move from actor to person came at the conversation at the Old Vic. That was it 🙂 Still is the most interesting glimpse of the person i find even today, the interviews. The Crucible had everything but of everything else since interviews beat any SD by a million miles for me. It never feels like he is hurrying away, we can just sit and listen, at nice distances or be quite close without the rush, the pressure, no shoving or pushing, no competition for attention, anyone and everyone there gets the same and you’re in nobody else’s way either. It’s just the perfect set up as far as i’m concerned 🙂

        I think his past messages are lovely and i do wish he would write to the ‘fandom’ more often 🙂 Because that also feels as if it is addressed to all equally and you can enjoy it fully. But i also think writing is much more his medium than face to face in SD type setting. I feel like on a personal level, aside from professional experience, education and you know all the ways we engage socially with each other the SD type setting is utterly strange and probably uncomfortable for him. What do all these people see in him, what do they want, what can he give in return? Must do your head in! 😉 That is a much easier equation in my other world, it’s all about those top Cs! (i’m exaggerating but it is, the reasons why people are there are very clear to all, there is no doubt). It does feel simpler and more spontaneous and the gushing is a natural state 🙂 Maybe because opera is OTT (in some ways, i don’t feel it that way as it’s been around me all my life but it is an unusual medium) people are more comfortable with the passion, the gushing, the openly expressed luuuurrveee 🙂

        I think if there was no demand or nobody there he wouldn’t think twice about it and would be perfectly ok with it. I just can’t imagine how he feels about crowds so close. There are certain things about the set up that bother me or i just don’t want to engage in, but i don’t mind the people around me, the closeness of it, but there is little introverted about me LOL. I can’t imagine the level of strangeness and discomfort that it means for other people. I just think it is not something that ever goes away, it’s something that needs to be overcome every single time it occurs. Which is why i mentioned that i appreciate is decision. Doubt he really realises as he is there how quick it actually is, probably doesn’t feel quick to him. And i bet from the moment the curtain falls he thinks , better hurry the car is already waiting and that person also has better things to do with their evening. It’s what i would think or feel like, unavoidably, i hate the thought of keeping somebody waiting like that, i’m usually down 5-10min before i ordered a taxi 🙂 When i leave with a colleague and they just start packing at the time we are supposed to be down already it drives me crazy and i tend to apologize profusely and unnecessarily to the taxi drivers for other people’s delays! I honestly wonder if he wouldn’t be in less of an instinctive hurry if he didn’t have a car waiting for him just there in the corner of his eye 🙂

        Anyway, at the end of the day SD are never for chatting, it’s like the post office with a big cue behind you 🙂 Do your business, next one waiting 🙂 If we are honest the thought of having to fight for a spot in the line or slightly push back when we feel a shove or a push of people equally or more keen makes one question the reasons why we are there in the first place? ‘Am i willing to fight for it? what do i want?’ I’ve had to ask myself the question in the past 🙂 We just have to be happy with the answer and act according to what makes us happy 🙂 The SD where one has a meter to breath around you, where you can sit and chat and the next person will patiently wait in line does not exist, anywhere in the world and it never has LOL Well, unless you are in a fandom of 5, which is indeed a nice place to be in 🙂 When the numbers are bigger the only way to make it equal for everyone at SD, the brave ones and the shy ones is to have independent people organise it and move it along, making sure time is equal for all and nobody lingers. It’s what happens at Comicon signature thingies and so on. I do like them because of that but they are less personal than if the OOA drives the interaction.

        I really hope he keeps doing interviews or talks where everyone can try and get tickets for, ask some questions and listen to him talk and enjoy his presence in a setting where they are not uncomfortable or where they don’t loose out to those more assertive than them. Because it always is the shy people who loose out invariably in SD settings however much good intention there is from the OOA. It is inevitably a competitive situation where people will loose out. So i am very happy he does tend to respond to invites to talks and interviews and goes into a lot of detail and takes his time with them and i hope he will keep doing them.

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      • and sorry for the unduly long replies! i’ve had many years to think about it and twist and turn it in my head and mull over what SDs mean to me and what i expect of them and so on 🙂

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  11. I just got home from work about 30 min ago and got ready for bed but wanted to peek in here first. Spoke with Kathy tonight at work and she couldn’t believe I was there at 10:30p, but the hubs would be out late so no reason to hurry home tonight.

    For what it is worth Zee, I thought of you the whole time. Happy to share illicit pics of us romping around on Sunday too if Ok with the other girls. (We are all clothed so not that kind of illicit.) 🙊 We also staged our own stage door walk with Kathy as stand-in for Mr. A. I had so much more fun doing that than I did watching him walk the line on Friday.

    I think for me like Guylty said in this account, the best part of the whole experience really is meeting up with like minded fans. I think what we all share can be the best of what life has to offer, meaning enjoying the fun with each other in a positive way. You were not left out in hearts or spirit anyway.💖

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  12. I am sort of tired so hope this comes out clear, not critical or judgemental regarding the stanchion set up outside the theatre.

    I used them all the time. Not to necessarily keep people away from the celebrity in question. They set a parameter for everyone to know where to line up. They block out certain areas where people should not go, like a green room, or staging area before walking onto a stage, or to direct people to be checked in for assigned/designated seating, or for people to line up for autographs. I totally get how it can come across as cold, distant or barrier like. From my observation, I saw it as the Roundhouse’s way to signal where people should wait. If they really wanted to control it better, it would have been more rigidly set up and there would have been a line attendant letting people know how to line up, what you could have signed; if there was a limit to what you could have signed and/or if photos or selfies would be allowed. I guess in my experience, the SD in NYC was casually set up (even tho he had minders/security) and I did not perceive it to be tense or uncomfortable. Granted, I did not try to get an autograph or try to meet or speak to RA either. I was on,y there on a Friday and Sunday. It would have been easy to get and autograph. I didn’t feel compelled to do it tho. I guess I was having too much fun watching friends, taking photos/videos, that satisfied me? I don’t really have a good reason one way or the other. But that is my view (I could be totally wrong, it’s late, I’m tired) of the stanchion set up.

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    • It’s reasonable to conjecture that this theater is not accustomed to dealing with a fan audience (as opposed to a crowd of regular theatergoers who might stand around afterwards to greet actors or obtain signatures) — their program is mostly traditionalist theater and/or serious new plays (rather than hit musicals), and their artists tend to be either leading lights of New York stage or regular jobbing actors (as opposed to celebrities). I found the theater really courteous in every regard, but various aspects of my interaction with them suggested that the ushers, etc., were a little puzzled / amused by what’s going on at the SD. That said, as stated above, I thought the barrier was a good idea. I also think Armitage himself gave a really good idea via his behavior of indicating what he was open to, and that the people at the SD conformed to that.

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      • I think the definitions of “misbehavior” are different for each group, as some things that are totally normal in fandom would be unusual for a theatergoing aficionado. I don’t have the impression that one group is inherently more inclined to “inappropriate familiarity” than the other although there’s a bad apple in every bushel. I don’t think that Armitage’s fans as a subgroup are necessarily more inclined to (say) grab a celeb than theatergoers (felt that way in London, too). I do think the size of the crowd plays a role — large crowds seem to legitimate certain behaviors because people are less conscious of being watched. It’s also my impression from various things that I observed while in NYC, and impressions I’ve gotten from watching the Internet, and I don’t find this surprising, that the play is only drawing from a certain pool of Armitage fans (with the exception of ComicCon weekend) — more from the older, “culture” crowd and N&S-inclined fans than from the younger Hobbit / Hannibal / Captain American crowd. (This is only natural given the subject material of the play and the cost of attending / participating). If you add up the cheapest ticket and the cheapest imaginable transportation cost for someone who doesn’t live in NYC — well, you can see a movie six times at least for that price, so if the subject matter doesn’t interest you, there’s little incentive. But, for instance, you could imagine there’d be a ton of Hobbit / LOTR fans who live in the NYC area and would just bop past that door to see what’s going on, and I don’t get the impression that that is happening on any large scale.

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        • You are probably right as far as attendee to the variety of venues and subject matter interest. I’ve learned that price $ is not always a deterrent when obsession comes into play. But that might just be my skewed view mostly, (but not exclusively) from experiences at San Diego ComicCon. SDCC has always been insanely expensive, yet people manage to obtain tickets and do what it takes to get close to their obsession, whatever that happens to be. I could have missed it, but agree with you that older Armitage fans as a subgroup do not seem grabby at all 😈

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          • I take what you say about obsession, but I just don’t notice the burden of the fandom being that way (“San Diego or bust!”). My experience with Armitage fans (and this is just my experience, there are obviously hundreds of others to draw on) is that it’s a very tiny group of fans who are interested in absolutely everything he’s done. I would hypothesize based on a poll I did that probably a quarter to a third of people I’d identify as more than casual fans did not watch even one episode of his work in Hannibal, for instance. People who are truly obsessed with his person to the point that they’d break the bank to see him in person are also in a tiny minority. I’ve noticed fewer than five people who will admit to having seen the play more than four or five times, and of those, three live within the five boroughs and can take advantage of public transportation and TKTS. Although the unwillingness to break the bank may have something to do with this venue. NYC is expensive and I’ve noticed (I was a bit surprised by this) that there is definitely a threshold of inhibition for a lot of people in navigating the city on their own, even if they could afford it. Anecdotally, I’ve seen a bit of talk like that on FB (“I want to see it, but I don’t want to go to NYC.”) Also the need for a temporary visa interview now for some fans to get into the US is a discouragement for people impacted by that. I think that he still probably has higher name recognition in the UK at this point, potentially also numerically more fans there.

            I wouldn’t discount that there are a larger group of fans who are more or less in my category (want to go, want to see all his stuff, want to see him, can afford to pay for the pleasure or at least can figure out how to manage it through sustained sacrifice), but if so, they are not appearing in huge numbers on any one night and they are not hugely vocal.

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            • Yes, I think you hit the pertinent point accurately and agree his name recognition is probably much greater in the UK. Don’t know what sort of obsessive fans he may have had to deal with already, but would never wish it on anyone. His ability to look different in different roles from real life might be the advantage here too.

              I can understand people not wanting to go to NYC. Besides the expense, it isn’t exactly the safest place. Although where is safe? I am limited in my knowledge/experience of getting around NYC, London, Australia, Norway, Montreal. (I get lost here where I live. I always warn, I am geographically challenged.) However, I learned to read maps (tho now we have GPS on our phones that I still have never used) and print out directions from laptop to memorise. Plus, will quickly hire a car, cab or tour. So refuse to let size of the city or unfamiliar geography stop me if I want to go somewhere. Not that I would expect anyone to follow my directionless lead🌻

              I am also (like Kathy I think) new to the whole fan activity world where I am on the other side of the table. My early fan girl experience was when I had just turned 18 and got a job working for Robert Redford answering his phones. I wasn’t enthralled, he seemed sort of old to me then. Stupid kid that I was. Witnessed a variety of fan behavior in that job and not all of it good. Ever since then, I’ve landed work in arenas involving extreme fan obsessions. I’ve never actually followed anyone’s work until, well I will admit 2010 or so. Haha I suspect this is not unusual in the Armitage fanbase, but don’t really know. It seems you have a better grasp of the fanbase here and have been more observant than I have been. 🌞

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              • NYC is pretty safe these days. Maybe not as safe as it was ten years ago, but pretty safe, esp in comparison to the 70s and 80s. And NYC itself with the grid pattern is pretty easy to navigate — it’s one city I’m never lost in.

                It’s changed a bit since the Hobbit, but certainly before that Armitage fandom tended to be a “first strike” — a noticeable proportion of people in it (including me) were first-time fans. That has its good and bad sides. I appreciated that about the Hobbit-period influx; they were fans of multiple things and didn’t put up with some of the crap that had been normal up till then.

                I’ve been watching for about seven years.

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          • It strikes me, too, that another difference from ComicCon is that there’s a lot to do there. I agree it’s insanely expensive and probably everyone who goes has their one or two things that they absolutely have to do, but it’s my impression that many people who go are interested in numerous pop culture things — not just one tv show or star but more than one or even several. You’re paying for a different experience there than you are when going to a play. Also, you can pay to have yourself photographed with people, which isn’t possible in this setting, which is much more haphazard / and in which what you get for your investment is much more limited.

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            • Oh yes, there is so much to do at CCI every year. However, there are some people who only go for one thing. Not saying Armitage is in that category, but several years back, gosh, it was when the Twilight movies were coming out, people would be camped outside of Hall H on Monday for a Thursday or Friday Twilight panel. I usually did not pay attention to them much except that one year, this happened:

              San Diego Comic Con rocked by tragic death: ‘Twilight’ fan struck and killed by car outside convention center

              A “Twilight” fan was struck and killed by a car in front of a horrified crowd of fellow Twi-hards camping out two days ahead of the opening of San Diego Comic-Con. The 53-year-old woman, identified as Gisela Gagliardi of Kingston, N.Y. – had tried to stop herself before she stumbled and fell into the side of a Suburu Outback. She was running across a busy crosswalk against the light at 9:20 a.m.

              http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/san-diego-comic-rocked-tragic-death-twilight-fan-struck-killed-car-convention-center-article-1.1111707

              I have not missed a CCI since 1987 and it never occurred to me that people lining up were only there for one panel. That they were camped out for days so they would not miss a spot in Hall H which seats about 6,000 people if I remember correctly. I guess they save on hotel bills, which is usually my biggest expense attending CCI. It wasn’t until this incident that it occurred to me that maybe some people were not enjoying more than one panel or event at CCI.

              While you can pay for a photo/autograph with a celebrity, not every celebrity offers that opportunity. There are many I know that rarely sign anything if at all anymore, because of how abused they have been by some of those autograph seeking fans, and that was before eBay but that is more on the comic celebrity side of this world.

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    • I think that is a really good point – the barrier works very much like a signposting. “This way in, this way out, stand here if you want to greet Richard.” I didn’t really perceive the barrier as a kind of cattle pen, or invisible bars behind which the fans were imprisoned lest they should overstep an invisible line. Like you said, it helped organise the SD. The only thing I did not like about the barrier was, that it was too short – at least on the Saturday night when there were way more fans than the other days. It just meant that the “orderly line” became disorganised because the space at the barrier could not accommodate all the fans. However, that is really caused by the space itself – it just isn’t particularly big…
      Anyway, I didn’t really notice tension at all but one SD. And only because I stood back and could see how the crowd moved.

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          • When I talked to the box office the first time, they were definitely not aware (July), but by August I was hearing reports of fans calling in that suggested they knew what was going on. In particular, fans making requests for multiple tickets for only one show — that apparently didn’t fit their usual customer model. I just think it’s different to know that there is a group of fans coming, and to understand what that might mean in terms of crowd control.

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        • To clarify — I do think they were aware. Certainly by the beginning of August. I just don’t think they had the history with this particular issue that suggested to them that they might modify their arrangements to accommodate it.

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            • yeah, it’s not clear to me where that line “should” have gone — down the sidewalk, presumably, but then they’d have needed additional guards and they probably have that particular car space blocked off and so on.

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            • I wonder if he’ll send flowers to the box office again, as he did in London. 🙂 It’s probably just shared culture, but I felt like the RTC box office was just so much nicer than Old Vic (sorry, Old Vic).

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              • I had the exact opposite experience, they literally forced me into an international phone call because they would not respond via email to my inquiry and not only that, but they didn’t even answered my request to please provide me with the international phone number , ie including correct dialing code since the website didn’t provide it. I had to do guesswork and try until i got it right. Not at all impressed.

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                • Maybe it’s just “what we’re used to” effect, then. I had a ticket in London for the rained out performance and they insisted that I appear personally with the credit card to be reimbursed, since I told them I couldn’t attend the replacement show as it was after my departure. No idea what would have happened if I’d have left England — so many people came in for one night only. I was at the box office personally three times, I think, and none of them was a positive experience. At one of them, the person said something insulting about fans within my hearing (as I was walking away with several hundred pounds of tickets — oh, sorry you despise me after I’ve spent half a month’s salary in your establishment). In any case, no up vote for Old Vic from me.

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                  • yuk! that is disgraceful! ie making you come with your credit card to be Reimbursed, never ever had that here before, pfui on them, it is more than usual to just reimburse people to their original payment method! Admittedly i don’t think i dealt with them in person more than once since i do it only online, but that is really bad for London. Also not impressed at the snootiness! People call opera elitist but no staff at the opera house would ever dare to make fun of fans, quite the contrary, they tend to joke and have conversations with the regulars 😉 And they know well which singers or dancers we prefer, nobody makes a secret of it! They certainly know what and who fills the house, it still surprises me how up their own *** theatres still are sometimes..

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                    • I think they had “history,” i.e., there was an Armitage fan at the time who was sort of vocal and public in pestering them about a particular issue — I just didn’t appreciate being tarred with the same brush. There was a segment of fans who joined one of their patron programs in order to get priority access to tix — I assume those people were treated better.

                      Actually you’d think both establishments would have some experience in dealing with international audiences and their needs.

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        • Seems though as they mostly got it right as apart from the odd busy days it appears to do the job 🙂 At least that appears to be the case from photos 🙂
          It’s very interesting how the feel of it is different depending on what prior experience is like as well. I get what you explained about Comicon after having attended 2 myself with a friend out of curiosity 🙂 I enjoyed myself tremendously, especially at panels which are fun and interesting and also opened my eyes to a lot of behind the screen work that goes on and is wonderful. But while i appreciate the signature and photo opportunities this provides those remain strange to me, the photo thing i just wouldn’t be able to make myself do it, brr. But the 2 signatures things i did bump into were nice but we chose to use some vouchers we had rather than let them go to waste. But i always think that it’s a better use of opportunity to those who really would like one to have one then to me take up the space/time when in actual fact listening to an interview is something i get more joy out of, and out of seeing people radiate with happiness when they get their photo/signature 🙂

          Based on my experience i think it is wonderful they get organised as they provide a safe and fun opportunity for interaction so people get something nice out of it and memories which otherwise would not be possible.

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  13. Agreed, the Theater probs wasn’t expecting the fan factor with this, but I didn’t experience any negative interaction either. On the other hand, is it reasonable to think, even with a bigger crowd, the sort of people that would go to a play in the first place, we might be less likely to misbehave? You know, grabby 🍑 or inappropriately familiar, or am I being unfairly stereotypical?

    Hmm, now that I think of it, it would be hard to notice if anyone slipped him a hotel room key. And if you (not you or anyone here ‘you’) were the sort to invite him to your hotel for an anonymous physical encounter, it would be easy to accomplish. But I don’t think the stanchion set up was designed to prevent that. Whoa, my head just took off in a totally wrong direction. Sorry

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    • LOL… the thought of it is just hilarious although i do think in the big worlds of fandom things like that do happen 😉 But i honestly think those are always the minute exceptions 🙂
      I think the barrier and such and security people are only partially there to protect a star from undue attention and probably more there to protect and help if there is a crush. It’s a situation where people always become by default focused on the 1 person on the other side and ignore everyone else around them because of it and that’s much more likely to cause accidents or such. To be perfectly honest that is the element which always put me off the crowds and why i personally am a bit ambivalent about SD, having been pushed and shoved on several occasions. Involuntarily i might add 🙂 Any of the people doing it would never have done it in normal circumstances and would have been perfectly polite and considerate. But in my experience under SD circumstances a lot of that just goes out the window, unavoidably. Some people are more comfortable with that situation than others. Having to fight for a spot or attention is just something that makes me feel horrible and spoils it completely, whereas looking on is just pleasant 🙂

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  14. Spät, aber dennoch: danke auch für diesen Beitrag! Stagedoor ist und bleibt wohl surreal. Armitage ist da eine Art “Zwischen-Ich” – nicht mehr ganz Kenneth, noch nicht wirklich Richard Armitage. Erwartet habe ich mir nie etwas besonderes. Hingetrieben hat mich dennoch die Neugier. Aber das Stück und die Bühnen-Performance sind mir das wichtigste!
    ‘Mein’ erster Abend war der erste ohne Stagedoor – natürlich waren die Wartenden enttäuscht, aber sehr gesittet. Wir hätten uns alle eine raschere Information gewünscht, dass er nun nicht mehr kommt. Das ist ein kleiner Beschwerdepunkt meinerseits.
    Aber das Treffen und Kennenlernen mit anderen Fans hinterher machte diese “Enttäuschung” ganz schnell wieder wett!
    Ich kann nur jedem/jeder empfehlen, bloß nicht mit allzu hohen Erwartungen zur Stagedoor zu gehen!
    P.S.: VIelleicht sollte ich nächstes Mal vorher auch einen kleinen Mut-Trunk zu mir nehmen? 🙂

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    • Oder es ist Richard Armitage im Arbeitsmodus, nicht der Privatmann. Was ja an sich auch ok ist – irgendwie ist das ja auch Teil seiner Arbeit, der Kontakt zur Öffentlichkeit. Mehr habe ich von ihm dahingehend auch noch nie erwartet. Und ja, seine Kunst bleibt das, was Eindruck hinterlässt.
      So einen Tag mit abgesagter SD hatte ich auch – zweimal. Einmal hat es auch ziemlich lange gedauert, bis es hieß, dass er nicht kommt. Gottseidank haben wir uns die Zeit sowieso vertrieben…
      Das mit dem Mut-Trunk sollte man nicht zur Gewohnheit werden lassen 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I so rarely go on the floor at CCI anymore. If I can get there before it opens then yeah I’ll do it. Otherwise I do try and avoid it. I have made the effort to go on the floor with Kathy and she makes it fun, but overall, too crowded. When I have to escort a celebrity, I make people move out of the way by telling them to move or saying make a hole cause we are coming thru. Can’t use a golf cart for everything, so a strong authoritative voice is necessary in these instances. It is forceful, but the only way to get from one booth to a panel and back inside if an hour. It isn’t fun for me anymore because I can’t get as much done as I used to. Why? The crowds make walking from my hotel, which is the Hilton Bayfront and freakin across the street from Hall H a forty minute commute just to get inside the convention center. That and in full disclosure, I’m not the most patient person on the planet🌎🌞

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  16. Pingback: The Autumn of #LoveLoveLove – Part 4: Thanks | Guylty Pleasure

  17. Pingback: OT: Observations on the SD with #DavidTennant | Guylty Pleasure

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