The Magic of Terry Pratchett [Gilded Balloon Dining Room, 20-28 Aug]

As a huge fan of the Discworld novels, this show officially authorised by the Pratchett estate was a must-see.

Presented by Marc Burrows, complete with an occasionally malfunctioning slideshow clicker, it’s a well-researched overview of Terry’s life and career.

Marc is a warm and engaging host whose love for Pratchett shines through. The research is meticulous, though sometimes economical with the truth; this is all part of Burrows’ overarching theme of Terry writing his own story and changing the narrative, however. Through newspaper clippings and video interviews, we discover Terry’s acerbic wit, anger at intolerance and injustice, and the later years of tireless Alzheimers campaigning.

While there wasn’t much deep detail on Discworld, I appreciated the examination of Pratchett’s little-known earlier work, plus the frequent ‘footnote’ asides were a nice nod to his writing style. Dark in places when discussing Terry’s right to die documentary, it’s still an uplifting and inspiring hour.

The audience were clearly devoted fans, but newcomers received an equally friendly welcome. Indeed, Marc gifting them copies of Mort to read and pass on was a wonderful gesture.

There’s also a second show afterwards, aptly named ‘Footnotes’, with more readings, special guests and deep dives into Pratchett’s work. The audience are also given an exclusive pamphlet of Pratchett rarities, which I certainly will treasure. A brilliant, accessible tribute to an author who’s so much more than just a geek icon.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *