An Evening with Stephen Fry
With the restoration of the Theatre Royal at Bury St Edmunds now halfway through, what better way to give the appeal a boost than have an evening hosted by Sir Jeremy Isaacs who interviewed Stephen Fry.
It was held in the grand setting of Tattersalls in Newmarket.
The first thing that strikes you (well let's not forget the grand entrance on horseback of Stephen Fry in battle gear in Wagner's Ride of the Valkyries) is just how passionate and determined a man Stephen is. You are struck by his honesty in all aspects of his life, including those darker moments that defy explanation.
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What a tremendous and personal tribute Stephen gave to his mother and father who were in the audience. A son could not say and pay deeper respects than he did, for all the love and support they have always shown. He spoke of his local family links to Bury St Edmunds where his grandfather was involved in the decision to have a sugar beet processing factory there.
Sir Jeremy Isaacs asked searching questions and deservedly got back detailed and passionate responses. Stephen talked about his childhood days at boarding school, and said in quite a flippant manner he found it no problem being a same-sex school.
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Stephen talked a lot about Oscar Wilde's influence upon him, but also how it is now fashionable for students to have posters of Wilde up in their rooms. He also spoke fondly of the Regency Theatre and how excited he was about the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds reopening in 2007.
I left the splendid surroundings of Tattersalls feeling enriched having been given an insight into the artistic and humorous world of Stephen Fry.