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Went to see Monty

MikeOxgreenMikeOxgreen Posts: 804
edited November 2022 in The potting shed
Last night we went to a packed theatre to see The Don. As I believe it's the first time he's ever toured like this nobody knew what to expect. It was very different from GW of course, it had to be.
It was well rehearsed and well delivered, I don't know where his script was, but he never made a mistake.
 He talked about his life, what he used to do before getting into gardening. How they bought Longmeadow (which isn't its real name) cheap as a wreck of a house (which took 10yrs to restore) with an overgrown 2 acre field that is now his gardens and the TV set of course. He spoke about his dogs, a pony he bought cheap for the kids which turned out to hate people, but be a champion farter.
He used the many pictures he's taken over the years to illustrate and back up what he was talking about.
The failures and mistakes they made, the stuff he burned, pulled up and threw out, then replanted differently.
He made the audience laugh throughout the evening.
The film crew were pictured and discussed, the unbelievable amount of time it takes to put one program together (they start 3 weeks in advance of it being aired) and how they coped during CV19.
"Do you think he'll do stuff he can't do on the TV, like swear?" My OH had asked. He did.

So if like us, you don't know much about him, but enjoy watching and listening to him on the TV then (if tickets are still available) go along for a good evenings worth of entertainment.


  • didywdidyw Posts: 3,200
    Sounds like a good night!  I'd love to see Monty live.  Our local theatre was going to book Bob Flowerdew (he doesn't live too far away) but they realised that even if they sold out it would be barely enough to cover his fee.
    Gardening in East Suffolk on dry sandy soil.
  • In 2005 Gardener's World were looking for a large gardening club to film a programme. My local club were only pleased to help.
    Monty Don planted a Banana plant in my friends garden which sadly died. He was also spotted wandering about the area and admired a members hanging basket.

    I was lucky enough to speak to him at club  event that evening. I had a copy of his book The Jewel Garden he insisted on sighing it with his own pen and include his wife Sarah as she co wrote it. Joe Swift, Sarah Raven and Carol Klein were also there. It was filmed in a members garden with dozens standing out on the street. Amazing.
    Building a garden is very personal. It's not quite the same as installing a boiler.
    James Alexander Sinclair 
  • @didyw That is the problem with the well know speakers. Our Gardening Club has the use of a large hall so members are invited at a small extra cost and there is still space to invite members from other gardening clubs and then the public. It takes a full room of 250 plus a raffle, then there is a good profit margin for the Club.
    Organising such an event is hard work and our club needed to have a separate committee just for that one event. The upside is more money to invite along more good speakers and that helps increase the membership.
    Building a garden is very personal. It's not quite the same as installing a boiler.
    James Alexander Sinclair 
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,943
    Here is a list of dates and locations for those interested.
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 9,925
    I went to see him at a local theatre a few years ago. It was before we had kids actually so maybe 2016? It might have been a one-off at the time as he was a patron of a local charity but he was very entertaining and a lot less formal than he appears on TV.
    Tradition is just peer pressure from dead people
  • BenCottoBenCotto Posts: 4,496
    It sounds great and, had there been a venue closer to me, I would definitely have been tempted to buy a ticket. 

    I don’t have an argument for one second with what he makes on this tour - he’s learned his trade and has a good story to tell - but I think he’ll do very well.

    Thirteen venues and assume 1500 capacity on average. Tickets £30 each and assume the artist takes 40% of the ticket receipts. If my maths is correct that is £250,000. 
    Rutland, England
  • You could buy a lot of tomato seeds with that.
    He does discuss how he was always looking at the ads in the local paper for cheap plants when they first moved there, a bit like FB marketplace is now I suppose.
    All the older (30yrs) trees in the gardens came from an auction he went to, I won't say too much in case it spoils it for anyone going.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,362
    Having read all of his books, it is clear he went through a very rough patch: became bankrupt, suffered from very severe depression, house they are now in was falling down when they bought it.
    I would thoroughly recommend any of his books, he has a beautiful writing style and is very passionate about the natural world.
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,040
    edited November 2022
    He mentions his buy from the auction in a few of his books. In The Jewel Garden his wife Sarah talks about how everywhere they went as a young couple, people were drawn to him. He comes across as kind, highly intelligent and charismatic. I have lots of his quotes in my gardening note book. The one below is a well known favourite.
    Building a garden is very personal. It's not quite the same as installing a boiler.
    James Alexander Sinclair 
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