From The London Times, November 2000

Submitted by Doris

Choice Cuts: Charles Dance
The actor loves music - listening to it and playing instruments

I know that the Hollywood movie, Charlie's Angels, opens next week (Nov 24) but they're not my angels! I have my own Charlie's Angels. Hundreds of them, I believe, and they're a fantastic bunch - incredibly loyal. They meet and chat on the Internet every Sunday at 7PM (actually, 6pm fortnightly on Sunday! -- contact) on a home page set up by a lady called Mary from Milton Keynes. I guess you could call it my fan club because they organize trips to see me in the theatre and for my birthday this year they gave me a first edition of LONG DAY'S JOURNEY INTO NIGHT and a programme from the original Broadway production.

I probably go to the cinema more than I do the theatre, perhaps because you can leave the cinema quietly if you don't want to stay. I have just seen THE CAR MAN at the Old Vic (London SE1) which was fantastic. I love to see dancers strut their stuff. I recently saw STONES IN HIS POCKETS at the Duke of York's (London WC2), which was so funny cou could feel the rows in the stalls rocking with people falling about laughing.

I have seen Billy Elliot twice and cried twice. It has had its detractors. I heard of one the other night, the wife of a film-maker who shall remain nameless. She apparently dismissed it by saying that there wasn't an original thing in it. I thought,"you silly woman": there isn't an original thing in the cinema any more unless you are talking about how sophisticated you can make your special effects. Just about everything's been covered, but that doesn't mean to say a really good film can't suck you in, which is what Billy Elliot does, constantly tugging at your emotions.

There is something about watching television all evening that I find really energy-sapping, but I do get locked in to some of the story-lines in CORONATION STREET (ITV, Mon,Wed,Fri & Sun, 7:30pm) because it is so well written. I love Roy and Hayley (David Neilson and Julie Hesmondhalgh). Roy is such a fabulous actor that I want Alan Bennett to write a TALKING HEADS for him. All those little nuances, all that insecurity - he is divine. And now he is married to this transsexual.

I love music: from Wagner to rock'n'roll and everything in between. I sort of play the guitar and rather late in life I've started to learn bluegrass banjo because I love that sound and it is very uplifting stuff. I went to a recital at the Wigmore Hall given by Tim Pigott-Smith's son, Tom, who's a really mean fiddler! He started with modern music and finished with Debussy, and if I could lose myself in a part the way he can lose himself in his music, I'd be happy.

© 2000 London Times

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