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Tales of Terror at St Mary’s Lighthouse

August 16 is a day I’ll remember for a long while.

My first port of call was a visit to the BBC Radio Newcastle where they pre-recorded a 10 minute interview with me about Cursed Horror Stars. It went off without a hitch, which is not surprising since I use to present a rock & blues show on community radio many years ago so I know a bit about radio broadcasting.

It went on air around 4:50 pm and although I didn’t get to hear it, my mum did and she was over the moon it went well. I’ve been told several times I have a good voice for radio even though I hate what I sound like every time I hear my awful vocals!

The next visit was to St Mary’s Lighthouse for the Whitley Bay Film Festival screening of Roger Corman’s portmanteau chiller Tales of Terror(1962). Hosting this event is retired TV producer Chris Phipps, the man behind the iconic 80’s music show The Tube. An avid film fan, Chris Also acted as interviewer, and together we chatted in great length about the book to a more than appreciative audience prior to screening of the film.

It was indeed a joy to chat with Chris and I hope we’ll have many more in the non-to-distant future. Thank you for having me mate.

Tales of Terror is Corman’s fourth big screen adaptation based on the stories of America’s Gothic master Edgar Allan Poe. This time Corman opted for the anthology treatment adapting three tales from four Poe stories (the middle story combines The Black Cat and The Cask of Amontillado). Vincent Price appears in all three but its the presence of Peter Lorre and Basil Rathbone in the second and third tale that gives the film its dramatic clout. Both actors were in their final years, but as consummate pros they still delivered the goods despite being hampered by age and poor health. The middle story, featuring Price and Lorre as wine enthusiasts, worth the price of admission solely for the brilliant wine tasting sequence.

With the added bonus of a fish and chip supper during the screening, it turned out to be a memorable evening for all concerned. Special thanks to Ema Lea and Simon Fitzpatrick for doing a remarkable job.

My next big event is the Book on Tyne Festival in November. Will give you more news about that as soon as it comes.

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