I love going to theatre. Obviously. I wouldn’t spend so much of my life sitting in front of a stage if that wasn’t the case. But I do sometimes miss other non-theatrey pursuits. I used to be a regular gig-goer but over recent years one has rather eclipsed the other. So I couldn’t pass up the chance to see one of my favourite artists, Kristin Hersh, play Koko on Wednesday night, could I? Koko’s a new one on me. All red and glittery, like being in the belly of a big gay whale. And Hersh was reliably great though I prefer it when she dispenses with her band-mates and goes acoustic.
However what I found myself noticing most was how, well, not at the theatre I was. For a start I somehow seem to have forgotten how late these things start. Hersh is a considerate performer and she didn’t keep us waiting but still there was a lot of milling about. And then there’s the people sending serial text messages, taking pictures on their phones, and chatting away through the songs they didn’t know – all crimes punishable by the British breach-of-etiquette death stare at the theatre.
Plus there’s all that encore faffing. KH played a storming version of Me And My Charms after she came back on stage, but even though I enjoyed it I found myself manoeuvring myself subtly towards the exit, so I could make a break for the tube at the end of her set before the mass exodus. A great gig and a great night, but none of these things used to bother me before. Just a blip I hope.