On physiognomy

It’s been a while since we heard from Alan Bennett.

His 1988 diaries describe a visit to Russia in the company of writers like (sic) Timothy Mo and Sue Townsend, arranged by the Great Britain-USSR Society (yet more “international cultural exchange”):

 I am disturbed to find Melvyn Bragg working in the hotel as a doorman. He pretends not to recognise me.

To Massenet’s Werther at the Bolshoi. It is an indifferent production, the scenery and sets almost Music Hall, but the house is packed and Nina and Galina, our guides, say that this is the first time for years they have managed to get a ticket, which makes us all feel worse for not enjoying it. Someone who is enjoying it is Melvyn Bragg, this time in the back row of the chorus.

Another visit to the Bolshoi, this time for an evening of ballet excerpts. […] By now I am unsurprised to find Melvyn is in the ballet as well as the opera, and he even takes a curtain call, accompanied, as ballet calls are the world over, by a deadly hail of tulips.

This is brilliantly observed, working perfectly for our images both of Bragg and of the various scenarios in which he appears.

Talking of lookalikes, à la Private eye, my friend Hugh observes that Li Manshan is a dead ringer for Andy Capp.

LMS as Andy Capp

Might they perhaps be related? I think we should be told.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s