It’s D-Day Richard Armitage!

download poem

Errr..right, not quitting the day job.  Of course D-Day in these parts means the long awaited Worldwide Download of the Digital Theatre’s production of The Old Vic’s The Crucible.  

I was right there with everyone else…I had a great plan.  It’s Spring Break.  The campus – and more importantly, the web server – is virtually empty.  I hooked my computer to the web via a nice, sturdy Ethernet cable and away I went.  When I finally managed to enter my credit card info correctly (after three operator errors on my part) the purchase went smoothly.

crucible download

There it is…in my Digital Theatre Library – along with my purchase of the “Exclusive Interview” (we’ll pretend that the original audience wasn’t there…more exclusive that way really 😉  )  Since I’m not able to devote 3 hours 19 minutes today, I proceeded to the download.  The player and some Adobe utility downloaded rapidly and then came the main attraction – The Crucible. (At 6.5GB in HD, I made the right decision to NOT download the file to my iPad…I like you a lot Richard Armitage, but I’m not purging 99.5% of the apps on my 8GB free to me iPad for you.  Sorry.)  

Here’s where we run into a bit of a snag…I employed the stopwatch app on my phone shortly after the download started and didn’t move from 0% complete.  After 1:17:39, it was still only 3% complete (that’s .195GB if you’re keeping score).  Speedy…like dial up speedy!  Good thing I already knew I wasn’t going to be able to watch…

tearing hair crop

…or I might still be hoarse from ululating and half bald from tearing my hair in despair!  Unlike the ladies above (funeral mourners), I’ll live to download another day (my hair intact, thank you!), so I figured I might as well cancel out of the download and make room on the Digital Theatre server for someone else…You’re welcome!  😉

Best of luck to those still in the queque!

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Stop taunting me Digital Theatre

PLEASE?!?!!?

PLEASE?!?!!?

I get it.  There are massive licensing issues that prevent public cinema screenings of the Digital Theatre release of The Crucible starring Richard Armitage.  I really do get it, and I have been trying to be extra, extra patient.  But desperate times lead to desperate measures…To channel my impatience, I’ve begun to craft a plan by which I will can almost replicate a cinema experience privately.  I’ve spotted out a familiar space:

Yes, that *is* a baptismal font...

Yes, that *is* a baptismal font…it sometimes pays off to chair the Technology Team!

It’s not quite as big as an actual movie screen, but it is definitely about 20 times the size of my biggest TV screen.  Even better, our new, 5000 lumens projector is due to be installed any day…if you look closely, you can see it hiding in boxes at the bottom center of the image.  If I can get my minions...um…I mean my fellow committee members in line, we should have the CAT 6 wiring pulled to establish a nice, steady and secure Ethernet connection.  We also have a recent sound upgrade which will give me surround sound.

I even have one of these!!  (I can also lay my hands on cinema like boxes of Goobers and Snowcaps!)

I even have one of these!! (I can also lay my hands on cinema like boxes of Goobers and Snowcaps!)

Looks like I’m pretty much set, but it seems like something is still missing…now what was it?  Oh, that’s right….I still need the #%$@* main event!  If I were a betting person, I’d guess North America won’t see a digital download until the cinema screenings run their course…April?  May?  Who can say?  Until then though…

A girl can dream...and photo edit! Photo Source

A girl can dream…and photo edit!
Photo Source

I’ll keep the popcorn popper on standby…anybody with me?  (BYOS – bring your own sweater…it’s kinda frosty in there after hours!)

What a Wonderful World…Spread the Love Update

What a great week of reports coming in from The Crucible previews in London…people are enjoying the play tremendously and those who have met Richard Armitage at the stage door have mentioned many times how happy and sweet he’s been.  There’s another word to describe him…. it just slipped my mind…wait, it will come to me…um frightening?  No, that’s not it.   Oh, I remember now – KIND.  We all have our frightening moments, but Richard Armitage has shown over and over again that he has a tremendous capacity for kindness despite being absolutely terrifying!   And so do you all!   You make it a wonderful world…cue gratuitous Louis Armstrong…

The SpReAd the Love campaign celebrates the kindness each and every one of us does in both in our local communities and just in general.  So far this year we’ve collected reports of 344 kindnesses ranging from monetary gifts and in kind donations of food, clothing, furniture, toiletries, etc., to simple kindnesses like holding a door or helping out a friend.  Our last campaign was specifically directed at extending kindness to children in crisis in honor of Richard Armitage’s role as Chop in the forthcoming film Urban and the Shed Crew during which we collected 144 kindness reports which were matched by a dollar for kindness donations to one of Richard Armitage’s Just Giving Charities

stl just giving 3

It doesn’t end there…the same anonymous donor has agreed to underwrite a new speed round of kindness collection.  July 9th is the opening night for regular performances of The Crucible at the Old Vic Theater in London.  I’m shamelessly pasting in Jazzbaby’s fantastic description…you can find it here

kindness challenge 3

So there you have it.  Thirteen days before July 9th…that’s less than four kindnesses per day throughout all of ArmitageWorld – easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy!!  Here, I’ll get us started by giving a shout out to the gentleman with the lovely smile who held open the door for me at the gas station this morning…my day’s a little brighter because of his kindness.  So 47 left anddddd…..GO!

The Mirror Has (at least) Two Faces: Richard Armitage and Janus

One of my very favorite things about Richard Armitage as an actor, is his ability to subtly manipulate the expression on his face.  I’m not talking about the kind of exaggerated contortions that are a trademark of Jim Carrey, but rather the combination of several small, but potent elements that allow him to convey emotion, mood or temperament through expression alone.

Need I say more? Source

Need I say more?
Source

Case in point:  The promotional image for Old Vic production of The Crucible.  The sum of subtle individual expressions produces a kind of subdued ferocity. While reminiscent of characters like Guy of Gisborne and Thorin Oakenshield, this expression is a far cry from the genial and friendly expression that Richard Armitage has sported in all kinds of promotional and fan photos recently. For example:

At CinemaCon Source

At CinemaCon
Source

Or

At WonderCon Source

Richard Armitage, WonderCon, April 19, 2014. Photographed by Gage Skidmore. Source

The contrast is striking.  It’s almost as if he has two different faces – rather like the Roman god Janus.

Janus coin from early Republican Rome Source

Janus coin from early Republican Rome
Source

Janus was one of the most ancient gods in the Roman Pantheon…so ancient that by the first century AD, the Romans themselves had lost track of his earliest origins and functions.  What is known is that as a deity, Janus was primarily associated with doors (januae), beginnings and transitions.  The two faced images of Janus are well suited to the duality of the concept of beginnings and changes…a face for each part of the equation.

Students always find Janus’ protection of doors kind of curious.  Why would doors require a dedicated deity they wonder?  Doors held tremendous importance to the Romans…they were the barrier that separated the sacred space inside the house from the dangers that were rampant outside.  By the tail end Roman Republic (late 1st century BC) this was a largely figurative concept.  In the early days of Roman culture though, when Rome was an isolated cluster of villages populated by farmers and shepherds and surrounded by wilderness, the dangers of the outdoors were very real.  Janus was only one of the protectors of the door.

doors janus

At its earliest, Roman religion was most likely an animistic tradition.  That is, they believed that everything, either animate or inanimate was imbued with spirit…with anima.  Eventually, many of these anima were personified as deities:  Cardea watched over the hinges, Limentius the threshold.   Janus was not only associated with the door, but was vital because he watched over the trip through the door.  One face guarded the inside space, the other was a Roman’s eyes to the outside..protecting the transition from sacred to profane.

I'm not sure I'll ever tire of watching for new "faces" to emerge...but I'm positive that I'll take the guy on the left to guard my door!

I’m not sure I’ll ever tire of watching for new “faces” to emerge…but I’m positive that I’ll take the guy on the left to guard my door!