It’s polling time again! It’s been a while since the last poll (in fact, we have to go back to last year when we voted for the second annual Best Alfie Boe Song) so we’re well overdue. So far in our polling history we’ve found the answers to such conundrums as Alfie’s Best Look, Fans Favourite Duet, Fans Favourite Classical Video and Best Live Song but the question I’m now asking (thanks to Jan Fitzgibbons for suggesting it) is
I know, it’s a tough one! Or then again, it might not be a tough one – you might have a firm favourite already. It doesn’t matter if you saw all or none of the performers as we are lucky enough to have the Alfie Boe YouTube page to view all three performers (click here).
Laura Wright was of course the support act for Alfie’s first headline tour, Bring Him Home (sadly for me, before I was a fan), Emilia Mitiku came in for the Storyteller tour and last but not least, New Zealand trio Sol3 Mio supported Alfie on the Serenata tour. Over the next few weeks, we’ll take a closer look at all three acts. I do have my own favourite but I’m not going to reveal it yet!
For the purposes of this poll, we’re only looking at the main support acts for Alfie’s three headline tours of the UK so apologies to all Matt Lucas and Jason Manford fans – we’ll come back to them at a later date.
To help you decide between Laura, Emilia and Sol3 Mio, here are six videos, one each with Alfie and one by themselves (Laura’s videos show Alfie’s cheeky side and watch out for Alfie’s incidental joke at Emilia’s expense too!):
One of these videos contains one of my all time favourite Alfie songs – do you know which one?
The Storyteller and Bring Him Home tours are available on DVD:
Bit late to the party with this one but just come back from holiday and listened to Alfie’s new song for the first time – wow! Just love it…but then you didn’t really think I’d say anything else did you? If you haven’t yet listened, here it is:
I chose a cracker of a concert to miss out on as well! I followed the reports from holiday and the song title competition run by Alfie via twitter – an apt title chosen by Sonia, Annie, Sue and Rebecca, well done ladies.
Updated the YouTube page with all the new videos too – thanks Linda as always. Click here to go to the page.
Yes, it’s exactly one year since I took the plunge and started blogging on my own site – and what a year it’s been! There have been many highlights such as conducting my first interviews, getting published in the Huffington Post (I now have more non Alfie Huff posts), getting 40k plus hits, telling you the exclusive news about Alfie’s official facebook fan group, but the moment to top the lot was talking to Alfie at Somerset House and hearing him tell me he loved this blog! Now be honest, how many of you were surprised at my top highlight?
Some fun facts and figures about the first year for you:
The poll with the most votes: Alfie Boe’s Best Look
Number of comments received: 265
Post with highest number of hits: Alfie Boe at the Royal Variety Performance
Most viewed page: Alfie Boe on Youtube
Most commented on posts: Alfie Boe’s Best Song Countdown
I couldn’t do this without your fabulous support – thank you for reading and sharing, in particular:
Sue Black, Linda Anstee, Lyn Thomas, Ellen Rook, Cynthia Shepherd, Kate Bilsborough, Karen Blower, Janet Hudson, Pauline Routier, Sue Redfern and Nicola Lange for spreading the Alfie Boe love on social media so much xxx
Thank you again to Linda Wellington, Nikki Lewis, Carole Hunt and Marcia Studley for letting me use their videos and photos xxx
Thank you to my personal cheerleader Debbie Bannigan for her unstinting support, encouragement and willingness to share her amazing fount of knowledge – you are a superstar xxx
So, onwards to year two! What will this year bring – haven’t the foggiest but can’t wait to find out! As always, I love to find out what you think, so please fill in the form with your ideas for thoughtsofjustafan in the coming year!
I’ll leave you with Love Reign O’er Me from Alfie’s UK tour (thanks Linda)
Another busy week for Alfie – lots of radio promotional appearances (both live and recorded) which means the Classic Quadrophenia PR machine is cranking up big time.
Most of the radio chat centred around the forthcoming Quadrophenia in great interviews with James Watt of Radio Stoke, Andy Potter on Radio Derby and Stephen Foster of Radio Suffolk. Interesting discussion (with Andy Potter) on what crossover means – according to Alfie (and it’s something he’s said a lot before), crossover means the fans crossing over to discover different types of music. It’s not a genre of music by itself!
Thanks to Marcia six are now on you tube:
Also, this week, Alfie added to his charitable causes by becoming the patron and music champion of BD Music Hub. This comprises a group of partner organisations who work together to ensure that that the children and young people of Blackburn and Darwen get as many quality musical opportunities as they can, both in school settings and in the community. Click here to see more about what they do.
Along similar lines, Alfie has also lent his name to the Blackpool Gazette’s Give Us A Tune music appeal which aims to subsidise music lessons for students at Blackpool Music Academy. They are asking for 50 musical instruments and £20,000 to be donated to ensure a lasting music legacy in the resort.
If you’re not a twitter user then you’ve been missing out in the last couple of weeks. Alfie and Matt Lucas both tweeted that they would be up for a new kitchen video – woohoo – and then Nicola Lange put forward the idea that they should film something with Jamie Oliver for his FoodTube channel…and the lovely foodtube tweeters responded very enthusiastically! If this actually happened it would be fantastic as Jamie’s FoodTube has over a million subscribers.
Having said that, it must be ridiculously difficult to organise three such busy schedules so who knows if it will go ahead or how long we’ll have to wait to see the result!
Until then, we’ll have to content ourselves with one of the original Alfie and Matt kitchen videos:
And just because they’re so good and we miss them, here’s another one:
If these aren’t enough, click here to go straight to the youtube page.
For a bit of light hearted fun, the question I’m asking today is:
What’s your favourite Alfie Boe Look?
Twitter and the Great British Sewing Bee (yes, really), gave me the idea for this blog: someone mentioned liking a man in a well cut suit (I may have mentioned Mr B at this point, ahem) and the sight of a denim shirt with poppers brought Alfie instantly to mind.
So, do we as fans prefer Alfie in jeans, white shirts with puffed sleeves, a well cut suit or something else entirely?
The poll is now closed – a new post about this will be available…soon!
If you’ve been following this blog for a while, you’ll remember previous posts about the tremendous women I’ve met through following Alfie Boe, namely Margie in Australia and Roberta in NYC. This post is about two fantastic friends, The Two Linda’s, both of whom featured in my last post about the Classic Brit Awards – and yes, I’m still floating around after that evening!
If you’re a fan of Alfie Boe that has ever searched YouTube for videos, you’ll almost certainly have seen one of Linda’s lovely videos. We are extremely lucky that Alfie allows fans to film at his concerts and even luckier that such a talented camerawoman like Linda shares her videos with the wider world.
I first met Linda at the Bluewater book signing in September 2013 and was immediately welcomed with open arms as a fellow Alfie fan. We have since been to several events and met up and had a great time – the Two Linda’s even came to my 40th birthday bash in September. I interviewed Linda (sounds a bit grand for what was just a chat really!) at the Classic Brits and she told me that her introduction to Alfie came through her love for Il Divo – I know, I can’t understand the attraction either! Although Linda had been aware of Alfie for a while (Parkinson and the Matt Lucas kitchen videos where her chief thought was how much a clean shaven Alfie looked like Declan Donnelly!), she didn’t think he was that special until some of her Il Divo friends from America were coming over to London to see him in Les Miserables at the Queens Theatre. Linda went along and was absolutely hooked, eventually going to the show six times, including the legendary last performance. Since then, Linda has seen him at every available opportunity, including nearly all of the Storyteller shows. My son is a keen Jellytots Linda fan, and it was him who gave her that name in order to differentiate from the other Linda. Linda W is an avid consumer of jellytots!
Linda A is another very special friend who I first met over coffee when she and a friend came down to London to see the musical Rock of Ages. The meeting place gives you a inkling of how she came by her nickname of Costa Linda although we didn’t actually meet in Costa! My son, as well as being a fan of Linda W is also a fan of Linda A and as Linda W is called jellytots Linda, Linda A is now Costa Linda as we met her in over coffee. The actual conversation went something like this: “So are we meeting jellytots Linda or Costa Linda?”.
Although Linda and I had only tweeted and chatted online before, from that first meeting we just got on like the proverbial house on fire and have done ever since. We have since met up at non Alfie related events as well, although one such meet up resulted in our most unexpected Alfie moment. I met Linda at the stage door of the Queens Theatre where she had been to a matinee of Les Mis. We were chatting to a couple of other friends when Alfie suddenly appeared and just as quickly disappeared into the stage door – to say we were star struck is an understatement! We stood there yelling and waving but neither of us thought to ask him to sign anything or come out for a photo! This is Linda’s Alfie story:
How did I first get into Alfe?
The date…3 October 2010, I was so excited! It was the 25th anniversary performance of Les Miserables at The O2 Arena, London. I’d had my ticket for months and had been waiting with great anticipation…. My one disappointment, why hadn’t they chosen someone like John Owen Jones or Simon Bowman for the role of Jean Valjean? After all they had both played the part to some acclaim at The Queens Theatre. Instead a virtual unknown to me, a tenor called Alfie Boe had got the part in this prestigious performance so I would reserve my judgement! Well there I was in my seat at the O2 waiting for Les Mis to begin. The overture started up …I felt the excitement in the pit of my stomach… … The performance began, Jean Valjean stood before the microphone and began to sing …….WOW!!!! Alfie Boe, what a voice! As the show progressed I found myself totally mesmerised by this wonderful man…Valjean’s Soliloquy, Who Am I, and of course the superb Bring Him Home…it wasn’t just his voice that that held me spellbound, it was his whole persona.
From that moment on I was well and truly BOED! I left the O2 floating on cloud nine determined to find out everything I could about this wonderful man!!! I bought every CD I could get my hands on, looked up You Tube clips etc, I couldn’t get enough. Then it was announced he was to play JVJ at the Queens. I became a regular visitor and met Alfie here for the first time. He was so humble and sincere at the SD, always happy to chat have photographs taken and spend time with those waiting to see him. It was here he won the hearts of many of us! Then of course he announced his Bring Him Home Tour…………. I booked quite a few…….
Why do I go to so many concerts?
That’s easy to answer…. I’m a great believer that you can never have too much of a good thing! At my first Alfie concert at The Birmingham Symphony Hall in December I also did a meet and greet. Alfie was so kind and charming, he looked genuinely interested in what I had to say, his attention was mine….if only for a couple of minutes! It was also at this concert I got to ‘sing’ on stage with him, I did warn him that I had an awful voice, he found that out soon enough and said to me “You really can’t sing can you?” I just fell about laughing…ever since there are those that call me ‘Can’t Sing Linda’ …… Thanks for that Alfie!!!
I have an absolute ball at Alfie’s concerts, the set list may be similar or even the same but at every show there are those special moments and incidents that happen from venue to venue…you never know what to expect!! You may be in fits of laughter one minute because of what Alfie has said or done and the next minute you find tears streaming down your face listening to him singing some wonderful moving song. I know it sounds like a bit of a cliché but I become so alive at Alfie’s concerts, I find myself totally engrossed in the whole experience. I never want it to end. Another reason for going to so many shows is the time spent with so many of the wonderful friends I’ve met through Alfie……
Friends made through Alfie…..
To say my life has changed since discovering Alfie is no exaggeration. I have made so many wonderful friends through him. Most of them I first ‘spoke’ to through social media then got to meet so many at The Queens when Alfie was appearing in Les Mis and of course at concerts. Other fans from all around the world, Australia (the lovely Margie!) America, Japan…etc. There are so many, far too many to mention by name but they all mean a lot to me! I would never have got to meet these people if it hadn’t been for Alfie and like all of us there are a few special friendships, I hope they know who they are!!! I just have to mention Jane, we got on from the word go!!! Have done silly fangirling together, celebrated together, confided in each other…… Alfie thank you so much! You are one very special guy!!!
My Alfie Boe story, like the Two Linda’s and many others, starts with another performer entirely: for me, Michael Ball. I had been to see Michael in Sweeney Todd in London’s West End and was blown away by the show and Michael’s superb performance. I went three times in all and after the second occasion, went home and looked him up on YouTube which led me to the Les Miserables 25th anniversary concert and then onto the Four ValJeans’s Bring Him Home. As soon as I heard Alfie come in to the song at “You can take” I was completely smitten and poor Michael was soon forgotten! Sorry Michael xx
I then googled Alfie Boe and came to his fansite (now gone). I joined twitter and since then, it’s safe to say, my life has been completely different. I have made some amazing friends and spend a large proportion of my life fangirling about an amazing singer who also happens to be a really nice person. I bore my friends and family silly about him although some of them have given in and come to concerts with me or bought his albums. Resistance is futile!