Rolf Paints his Dream

Can you tell what it is yet?

With all the riches on offer during the recent Sheffield Doc/Fest, I could happily have moved into the Showroom Cinema for the duration, but alas, time and deadlines were against me, so I had to choose.

My choice proved to be a popular one. The promised appearance of the man himself added to the excitement – and probably explained the extraordinarily long queue waiting for the doors to open.

We were treated to a preview screening of a film that director Vikram Jayanti has made about Rolf Harris for Arena. The film tells two stories: the tale of Rolf’s colourful life and career is intermingled with the story of his latest project – a series of paintings inspired by a Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The paintings are rather splendid, but that’s not what makes the film so enjoyable. Vikram has given his characters (and at times himself) the space to talk fairly freely, resulting in very human portrayal of everyone involved.

I loved it. We were warned that it was unfinished, but I hope that they haven’t changed much – certainly the reduction in running time that we were told to expect hasn’t happened.

Tonight, I get to see the finished product. And so can you, if you are able to watch the Beeb (BBC2 at 9PM) or view the iPlayer. I’d recommend it, it’s well worth watching. And it’s great fun. Just like the man himself.

4 comments to Rolf Paints his Dream

  • Z

    I took my children to see him at the Sparrow’s Nest theatre in Lowestoft in the early 1980s. He was hilarious. A brilliant show.

  • Damn! If I had only known, I’d have been down at The Showroom too – as Rolf Harris is one of the few “celebrities” that I genuinely admire. Thanks for the I-Player tip, I’ll check it out soon.

  • Just saw this post and had to tell you I am a closet Rolf lover. When I was a girl his painting filled me with wonder. How something would suddenly appear from three lines and sguiggle.

  • I watched the program, brilliant, long and leisurely instead of the fast food fodder we seem to be served by TV these days. One of my favourite TV programs of the festive season, oh, actually, I can only think of one other, Miranda.
    You just know you could sit and have a mug of tea with Rolf and he’d make you feel perfectly at home.
    His wife’s work was equally interesting, and being dyslexic myself I was very interested to hear how she had struggled with education and the difficulties she still has.
    The model with the moon shaped face was truly hypnotic!