MCM London Expo Weekend Oct 09

October 26, 2009

Friday 23rd October

Just before I left I though I would do a quick websearch to see what I was going to do that night, well I found out that the cast of Monty Python (with the exception of John Cleese) were doing a one night only performance of a He’s not the Messiah (he’s a very naughty boy). After calling the box office they only had a few tickets left, so I got one at a very steep £110 plus £4.50 booking fee, the cost made me feel quite faint.

I caught the 13.35 train from Chester and arrived in London a little over two hours later. I took the underground to my hotel the Holiday Inn Express Southwalk, a nice little place, what you would expect from a HIE, although it was a good ten minutes from the closest station. After checking in I went over the National Film Theatre on the South Bank, where the actress Julianne Moore was giving a talk, I waited outside and was able to get an autograph from here.

After that I went to the stage door at Calendar girls and was able to get pictures with Jill Halfpenny and Gemma Attkinson, the two I was unable to meet last time.

I then headed over to the Royal Albert Hall to see the Pythons, this was the first time I have ever been to this venue and it was huge, I was in a private box directly facing the stage, it could only fit five people and we had a great view of the stage, although the performers did look quite small due to the distance.

I suppose I should have read more about the show before I went, it was totally not what I was expecting, it turned out to be the story of the Life of Brian as told by Eric Idol songs and a huge symphony orchestra and opera singers. It was very enjoyable and at the end Michael Palin got to sing the Lumberjack song which all the audience loved. There were a load of camera crews there and I am sure on more than one occasion they were pointing directly at me, I will have to buy the DVD when it comes out to see if I am in it.

When it had finished I headed for the stage door, with what seemed like a hundred over people, where we waited and waited and waited some more, in the end there must have only been about 20 left. The only people who came out that way were Eric Idol and Carol Channing. Although it was great to meet them and spend time with them I was very disappointed that the others did not come out that was, I was really looking forward to meeting Michael Palin (my favourite Python) as his travel shows are a real inspiration. As I had waited there with the others until 1.30am I had long since misted the last train, so I had to hail a cab on the street, it cost just under £20 to bet back to the hotel and when I did I was exhausted and went straight to bed.

Saturday 24th October

Got up at 7am and felt really tired and went down for breakfast, I was the only one here and helped myself to sausages and eggs and loads of orange juice, I tried to fill up so I could skip lunch.

I them headed to London Excel where the MCM London Expo was taking place.

I got there at about 8.40 and then had to wait almost an hour to get into the place, even though I had an early entry ticket for 9.00.

I went and got autographs from Terry Farrel, Nicole DeBoer and Nelson Ellis, before watching Ronny Cox and his band perform on stage and then got his autograph as well.

I watched the talk by the cast of Warehouse 13 and then had a photoshoot with them, they were very friendly and happy to meet the fans, I then had a photoshoot with Terry Farrel and Ronny Cox.

Then it was time for the free autograph signings, first was the cast of Warehouse 13 (Allison Scagliotti, Eddie McClintock and Joanne Kelly), again they were very friendly taking time to speak to everybody and pose for pictures, I was talking with the guy in front of me in the queue and we swapped cameras to take pics of each other. If you haven’t seen this show yet give it a try I have only seen a couple of episodes and have really enjoyed it.

Next we went over to the makers of the new “no budget” zombie film Colin, these guys were really friendly and even let me take a picture with all of them.

Next was the cast of the Disney show Life Bites and although they had finished the line and had closed off the queue for autographs Neil Roberts one of the actors told me to come over so was able to get autographs and pictures with all of them.

Finally I met some of the people behind The Losers and was able to get their autographs as well.

I than called it a day at the Expo and left.

I went to The Playhouse Theatre where I was able to get both John Barrowman’s and Simon Burke autograph after the matinee performance of La Cage Au Folles.

I got a late lunch / early dinner at Nando’s, where I had one of the most miserly portions of chips. 

I then went to see Breakfast at Tiffany’s at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, although it was well acted I don’t think it was one of the best plays I have seen, don’t get me wrong, it was good but for some reason I could not get emotionally involved with the characters.

When it had finished I went to the stage door and was able to get pictures and autographs from the main cast, first was James Dreyfuss, (his brother actually took the picture of both of us) then Joseph Cross and finally Anna Friel, I was surprised by the amount of paparazzi that was there, the play has been running for a while now so you would think that taking a picture of Anna every night coming out of a door signing some autographs and then getting into a car and driving off would be a bit boring, after all once you have done it a couple of times what is the point of going back?

I then walked back up to Leicester square and caught the tube back to the hotel.

Sunday 25th October

Bit of a lazy morning, because the clocks went back it meant I had an extra hour in bed.

Went down for breakfast, it was a lot busier than yesterday and the only place I could sit was at the bar, after that I packed my bag and checked out.

First I went to the Cabinet War rooms by Westminster; this is where Winston Churchill worked during the Second World War. Inside you could see his bed room, map rooms, radio rooms, kitchens etc. Although it cost £12.95 entrance it was worth it to see this piece of war time history.

Following this I walked up the road passing Downing Street, the Centaf and a lot of statues including Lord Haig and Montgomery of Alemein.

At the top of the road I arrived at Trafalgar Square and visited the National Gallery where there is a great deal of paintings, some of the highlights are works by Monet, Van Gogh, Da Vinci and Michelangelo.

After this there was enough time to pop to Weatherspoons for a Sunday lunch before heading back to my hotel to pick up my bag I left with the concierge and then take the underground to Euston station before catching my train back home.

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