Enniskerry star Chris ‘high on emotion’ after review
SINGER/SONGWRITER PENS SCATHING RESPONSE TO IRISH TIMES WRITER
ENNISKERRY resident Chris de Burgh must have disagreed with the wisdom of Malxolm X (‘If you have no critics you’ll likely have no success,’) when he recently saw red and penned a scathing reply to a negative review. The spat has caught the attention of even the international culture media.
‘Were you much teased by your school chums in the schoolyard and called Creepy Crawley?’ the singer asked reviewer Peter Crawley. (We have it on reasonably good authority that the former St. Michael’s boy was not.)
Crawley’s review was of de Burgh’s show in the Gaiety Theatre and was published on September 3 in the Irish Times. Its contents were negative, despite the concert having sold out for three nights and including more standing ovations than an episode of X-Factor. Crawley describes the singer as ‘a businessman happy to have finished his long day of conference calls.
‘There is that warbly tenor, the calling card of the mawkish balladeer...there is that haircut, long at the back and wispy up front, entirely unruffled by 34 years in the music biz.
‘And of course there is that cringe factor,’ writes Crawley. ‘His slightly tarnished squeaky clean persona, his claims to heal people with his hands, his indelible association with a time of shoulder pads and enormous hair.
‘In short, it’s easy to snigger at de Burgh.’
Rather than using the offending paper to wash his windows, the Enniskerry man hit the proverbial roof and responded quickly to Crawley’s missive.
‘Your churlish review is an insult to all those who enjoyed their night out,’ he said, and in a stark warning to all journalists, everywhere, ‘in these days of collapsi n g newspaper sales and an entire new generation on the way who will get their information online, you may be looking for another job sooner rather than later.
‘It seems you are universally loathed in the theatre world; a leading impresario described you as “puffed up with his own self importance”, and a much loved and successful actress refers to you as “that loathsome little turd.” Great accolades, to be sure.’
Crawley said that he felt he could write about de Burgh’s public persona without causing any emotional trouble. ‘I think that somebody with a career of over 30 years standing will take it in his stride. I was surprised that it evidently was so wounding.’