MY new found philosophy this week has been - aspire for greatness but don’t be too disappointed if it doesn’t quite match up to it.

There are some very good reasons why this has only just dawned on me now.

Mainly the fact I’m reading a rather terrible play by Arthur Miller as part of a theatre-makers course I’m doing.

Yes you did read that right, a rather terrible play by Arthur Miller. The guy who wrote humdingers like Death of a Salesman, The Crucible and A View From The Bridge.

Unfortunately After The Fall is a bit of a mess of a play that is really difficult to get into because it jumps from one imagining of the main protagonist to the next. See even explaining what it’s about is hard!

As with most things in life every cloud has a silver lining and so it is with reading After The Fall because going through it I was thinking ‘blimey, if someone like Arthur Miller can write this load of old tosh, there’s hope for all us budding playwrights’.

Obviously Miller already had his greats behind him when he was commissioned to write the play but hey it just goes to show we’re all human.

I was having the same thought when watching War and Peace on Sunday (yes I know, that’s twice in as many weeks I’ve mentioned the show).

Andrew Davies (he of adapting the BBC’s Pride and Prejudice and loads of other cracking BBC period dramas) really set himself a task with Tolstoy’s monster of a book and it showed on Sunday when I just didn’t believe one of the main characters falling in laugh with an odious, evil Russian noble.

It wasn’t bad acting, it was just bad writing or let’s call it adapting in Davies’ case.

Now occasionally I beat myself up about this column.

I most definitely have my good days and bad days. By the comments it appears you didn’t like my dishwasher tirade but you absolutely loved the one about Halloween.

It’s the same with the children.

At the weekend we had the chance to see a showcase of the work they’ve been doing in their respective youth theatres.

Up until then, it’s probably fair to say, the Big Boy has been lying a little in the shadows of the other two esteemed performers in our household, the youngest having appeared in a professional production of Macbeth and the eldest stepping out in a number of award winning musicals.

But on Sunday, another little star was born when he went and smashed it out of the theatrical park as Sinbad the Sailor.

The others were good but he was amazing!

Which just goes to show, as I told him that night, that we all have our moments of greatness.

Yes he may have auditioned for several shows and not got in, and yes his siblings tend to do rather better on that front, but in that show he was the ‘man’, the guy who really shone and impressed us all.

Now possibly the next time he gets up on stage, it might not be so good, but actually that doesn’t matter. That’s because we know he’ll pick himself up, learn from those mistakes and try it all over again.

After all, even greats like Arthur Miller and Andrew Davies have bad days and we don’t think any less of them.


What I Said to My Kids This Week? “Yes, you did make rather a convincing drunken sailor!”