I know that this site is primarily a theatre blog, but to put it bluntly it’s my blog and I need a rant. I used to have a lot of respect for Louise Dearman – note the past tense – but now I have to say that she is starting to get on my nerves. I know there are lots of die-hard Lou fans currently making voo-doo dolls of me and setting them on fire but please just hear me out.
I have a somewhat stressful life, with various illnesses and catastrophes rearing their ugly heads as I’m sure they do in many families. As I have stated many many times on this website, I use the theatre as a kind of therapy (hence the title) to get away from all of this stress and aggravation, so when it’s the theatre itself causing me aggravation it upsets me more than it should.
I first booked Movies and Musicals in Cardiff because I wanted to see John Owen Jones, who was my first Jean Valjean in Les Miserables, but then he mysteriously disappeared off the bill, so I’m not sure if he ever was supposed to perform or if I just made it up. Happily however, one of my favourite West End ladies Louise Dearman, was definitely performing. Or so I thought. So I booked the hotel and the train tickets as you do when you travel to any destination, and I thought that was that and began to look forward to a nice weekend away in Cardiff. I’m not entirely sure what has happened to this event but something has definitely gone awry. Performers are dropping like flies out of this particular gig, so much so that only one originally billed performer is still going to be present. Because this is not the line-up I booked to see, I rang the venue and, luckily, received a full refund. I lost some money on the hotel and the train tickets were none-refundable, but apparently that can’t be helped.
Luckily, I had also booked to see Louise Dearman’s first solo UK tour “It’s Time” when it came to Leeds. Again I booked the hotel but decided to drive to the venue as it’s only an hour or so down the M62, and thank God I did. A mere three days later a note appeared on Louise Dearman’s website:
“We are disappointed to announce that following a decision by her management team, Louise Dearman has been withdrawn from the It’s Time UK tour due to circumstances beyond their control. We look forward to announcing new dates later in the year.”
Now, it is unfortunate when a performer pulls out of one event, but when it’s two in such a short space of time, it’s no longer unfortunate it’s just plain irritating. I have now wasted quite a considerable amount of money booking travel and accommodation for performances that are no longer happening. At the moment there is fresh confusion on twitter because Louise has apparently double-booked herself between a guest slot at Ian Stroughair’s cabaret show at the London Hippodrome and yet another event in Wales. All I can say is, I’m not even going to bother checking which event she will actually appear at, because I won’t be going to either. I had a lot of admiration and respect for Louise Dearman, but I have sadly lost all faith in her. I financially and emotionally can’t afford to follow someone blindly wherever they go with no guarantee that they will actually be where they say they will. Louise is a great performer and has plenty of fans to attend her next tour should there be one, but she has left me irritated, disappointed and unwilling to attend any of her future events.