Still stuck on August 22nd … :-)
So, Anéa and I checked out the Mela Festival and had a delicious meal at a couple of the stalls there, and then we wandered off to Aker Brygge, which is literally right next to City Hall Square, and where major things were going down that night. :-) OK, not so major, but fun. Some explications first:
Aker Brygge is a part of Oslo – it's way too small to call it a district, so let's call it a part – which is high priced and very fancy and where only rich people live. :-) Apartments there are ridiculously expensive. Apart from housing though there are also lots of stores (most of them fashionable clothing stores and so on, but there's normal stuff too like bookstores etc), a really nice movie theater (which isn't any more expensive than any other movie theater in Oslo, since the city owns them all) and a lot of restaurants and bars. Some very pricey but some perfectly affordable. There's a great Italian restaurant there that I like a lot, Eataly. (Say the name out loud. :-) Another thing that's there is Oslo's main comedy club, Latter (the name means 'laughter'). It used to be an IMAX theater, but that closed down and this club opened there instead a few years ago. They have several stages and they only put on comedy shows. In August every year for about a decade … I think this year's was the 9th … there is a comedy festival called the Stand Up Festival which is very popular, thousands of people come to see all kinds of comedians, everything from older established performers to brand new people just starting out, I think you can even sign up for workshops to learn about the, ahem, craft and then get to perform on one of the stages during the festivals. And they also bring in comedians from abroad to perform. So … a lot of fun to be had if you like that kind of thing. :-)
I'm not sure I can honestly say that Anéa and I are huge comedy fans … but we were going to one of the shows, one where various different people were going to perform, doing 5-10 minute routines each, because Anéa's boss was appearing in it and we wanted to see that. Anéa works part time as assistant to singer/pianist/songwriter/all around musical genius Ingrid Bjørnov, who is so talented and smart and funny that I hardly know where to start. :-) If you think you remember her name, that might be from my posts on Which Witch, the magnificent opera musical of which she is one of the creators. (Sheesh, not a good sentence.) Since then she has moved on to have a great career in TV and radio, but she also writes her own songs and performs them in stage shows which have been – and I am not exaggerating – wildly successful. I wish I could describe her style, but again, I'd hardly know where to start. Let's say … humorous, quirky, offbeat … and anyone wanting to add more adjectives, bring it on. Findabair for instance is a big fan; I'm sure you can think of something. :-) Ingrid's released just one solo album, but she's constantly writing songs. On the night of her performance at the Stand Up Festival she was far from well prepared; in fact, she had written the song she was singing the very same day. :-D
Hers was the only musical segment of the show, everyone else did standup; the show was emceed by a completely hyper Alex Rosén, he was definitely on something. Quel surprise. >:-) I think he's an unfunny creep anyway, so the fact that he was talking out of his ass didn't really bother me. The acts before Ingrid were extremely varied … I mainly remember two of them, one who was hilarious and one who was absolutely not funny in any way shape or form whatsoever. Everyone applauded when he left, I think mostly out of relief. Ingrid though was well received and got lots of both laughs and applause. Yay. :-)
I think I took a picture of the outside of the club, so it should be coming up here later tonight. :-)
PHOTO COMING UP
I also wanted to take some pictures during the performance. But some bouncerlike guy saw me holding my camera and told me that it wasn’t allowed. I felt that this was pretty unfair since there were numerous other people in the audience taking pictures, with flash and all. But Anéa and I were sitting by the door and it was easy to step over to us, so we were easy to tell off. Well, he said it in a nice and polite way. But it's the principle of the thing. So just to get my own back I recorded the audio of Ingrid's entire performance and posted it all on youtube. >:-) I would have just taken a few pictures, but no. >:-)
Since this was my old camera I had to divide the performance up into three 3-minute clips. :-( But better than nothing.
Unfortunately, this song – like all her songs – is in Norwegian. So you non-Scandinavians reading this will have to just enjoy her pretty voice. :-) I can tell you what the song is about, though – Ingrid often lets oddball news stories inspire her and this song is about a true story of a dentist who earlier this year applied to be allowed to serve alcohol in his office. He said to the press that he has quite a few patients who are phobic about visiting a dentist, and that he doesn’t feel Novocaine etc really works with these people. So he hoped to be able to give them some booze to calm their nerves instead.
Really a true story from somewhere in southeast Norway this spring. :-D
3 days ago