Getting caught up on some of the press clippings to have appeared in the past two weeks while I was on vacation...
The Stage has a short piece about John Barrowman's concurrent theatre appearances in December. "West End star John Barrowman looks as if he is going to be a busy boy this Christmas.... After all, the Simply Musical star made a recent TV appearance as time-travelling Captain Jack Harness in the new series of Doctor Who and it seems that he will be employing some sort of Tardis-like device (perhaps draped in tinsel?) to travel between Wimbledon and the West End on a daily basis for the beginning part of the festive period. Either that, or some unfortunate punters are going to be watching an understudy somewhere along the line. But no, that would never happen. I refuse to believe it."
Sylvester McCoy is profiled in an article at The Western Mail which discusses his new role at the Grand Theatre in Swansea. "The man who played the seventh Doctorr Who - he of the panama hat, question mark umbrella, pullover and braces - takes the part of Inspector Rough in Gaslight which opens tomorrow. At 62, McCoy is a veteran of the stage but he's still best known for his stint as the Doctor from 1987-89. And while in Swansea he popped into a Doctor Who convention at the weekend, in the city's Marriott Hotel, to meet fans of the series. ... 'Most of us Doctors will always be remembered best for the role,' he admits. 'But we've all had very busy careers after it. It's a great part to have played and I look back at it very positively.'"
Colin Baker turned up for an autograph signing this past Saturday in Darwen after his car got a flat, according to This Is Lancashire. "Fans were eagerly awaiting Colin Baker who played the cult BBC1 character between 1984 and 1986 at Darwen Library Theatre where he was due to speak at Doctor Who Day 2 organised by super fan Graham Groom. But the atmosphere amongst the conference visitors became even more tense than an episode involving the Daleks when his arrival time came and went. Graham 40 of Meadow Street Darwen paced nervously by the door waiting for his star guest to arrive. He said more than 100 tickets had been sold for the event -- the second Doctor Who convention he has held in his hometown -- and that people had travelled from all over the country. But just as panic started to set in his mobile phone rang -- it was the sixth incarnation of the Doctor to tell him his tyre had blown but he was on his way. Good job too...the Cybermen were getting restless. By the time he finally made his entrance Mr Baker recieved a rapturous welcome from the excited crowd. Colin who grew up in Rochdale said: 'I always feel at home coming up here and seeing the Pennines. We used to cycle to Blackpool and would go through places like Ramsbottom and Haslingden on the way.'"
David Tennant can be heard reading the book "Mac B" by Neil Arksey on BBC Radio 7's Big Toe show; click here for details.
BBC News has a few photos from the Regenerations convention in Swansea last weekend. The convention was also covered briefly at IcWales.
Bruno Langley (Adam) is starring in "Right Up Your Street," a cabaret evening, along with his former colleagues from Coronation Street at the Oldham Coliseum on Friday 7 October in aid of North West health charities, according to thiswebsite. Langley was also said to be appearing in the play Night Sky (by Rachel Wagstaff) to be shown at the Old Vic on Sunday 30 October (one night only) in aid of Index on Censorship (along with Simon Russell-Beale and Saffron Burrows) according to Index Online; however, according to a later report from Index of Censorship, "Due to a series of unfortunate events, we shall be postponing the performance of Night Sky that was due to take place on the 30th October."
September 22's edition of "The Sentinel" noted that "Pupils invited a special time traveller - an actor who has appeared in BBC 1's Doctor Who - to see their school's Tardis. Year six children from Belgrave Primary, in Longton, were treated to a drama workshop with Alan Ruscoe, who played a mannequin-like Auton in the last series of the cult BBC TV show. Alan has also appeared in two of the Star Wars films. John Collier, an advanced skills teacher at Belgrave Primary, contacted many past and present stars, inviting them to see the school's time machine. He said: 'I wrote to Alan originally because of his connection with the programme. I was surprised to learn that he actually comes from Longton. When he offered to spend a day in school, I couldn't believe it. It was a dream come true, for me as well as the children.' Belgrave's Tardis - which comes complete with a Dalek and computer equipment - is aimed at helping to inspire learning."
"How ITV changed the BBC" is an article on BBC News; there's a brief mention of Doctor Who.
The Daily Mail quotes Russell T Davies on "Scream of the Shalka" actor Richard E. Grant on September 21: "Despite being an early favourite to play Dr Who, Richard E Grant never really had a chance -- writer-producer Russell T Davies loathes the Withnail And I star. He says: 'I'm not a fan. He was never on our list to play the Doctor. Never.'"
The September 21 edition of "Third Sector" says that "Robert Cork, a 49-year-old man with chronic lymphatic leukaemia, has built a replica Dalek in just eight weeks in an attempt to raise money for the Bournemouth Leukeamia Fund. Cork, who spent up to eight hours a day building his version of the legendary Doctor Who race, has already raised pounds 400 for the cancer charity. He is set to make more by displaying it at local events, where people will be able to have their photo taken with the 'Charity Dalek'. The machine will also patrol local shopping centres, where donations can be put into a bucket attached to the remote-controlled, life-size robot."
Tom Baker's quest to become a voice over legend continues as he narrates the UK version of the forthcoming "Wallace and Gromit" film trailer, "The Curse of the Were-Rabbit". Baker's voice over trailer can be found on MSN and follows successful voiceovers on "Little Britain", numerous TV adverts and the forthcoming "Magic Roundabout" film.
Channel 5 broadcast "The Most Shameful TV Moments Ever" on September 19, "a veritable feast of the most tacky, twee, and tasteless shows to have graced, or disgraced, or our screens" according to the DWAS. Amongst the many gems was an examination of Doctor Who's entry, The Happiness Patrol, and included the views of the Doctor Who Appreciation Society's Antony Wainer.
September 17's Express and Star discussed the release of new Dalek toys. "Midlands parents should brace themselves for the latest must-have toy - an ageing, all exterminating villain which is still standing the test of time. Daleks have been Doctor Who's arch-enemies for four decades now but the infernal pepperpots from the planet Skaro are showing no signs of giving up on their evil plans for world domination. Remote controlled versions of the metal meanies are flying off the shelves in Kidderminster's Classic Collectables shop in the Horsefair and staff there predict it will soon be the same story across the region. Toy specialists are predicting that the evil creatures will be the number one selling gift this Christmas and, if Kidderminster is anything to go by, they could be right."
(Thanks to Paul Engelberg, Steve Tribe, Scott Matthewman, Darren Pickles, Peter Weaver, Faiz Rehman, Derek Hall)