Giffgaff x Halloween – When You’re Scared, You’re Not The Boss #alltheboss

The last thing you want to have happen to you when being chased by zombies this Halloween is to have no service on your cell phone! Luckily, giffgaff has you covered, literally and figuratively. They’re not without a sense of humor too, as the above video and below stills dictate.

 

This Halloween giffgaff is pulling a little trick ‘n’ treat by putting together a selection of classic horror figures, which prove that “you ain’t the boss when you’re scared.”

 

They had this to say about the production: “Filmed on location in the rather disturbing Trent Park, home to numerous rotting corpses including a Ghost Earl, and Alice, a six year old girl who can be heard singing in the Stables, we’re cooking up some Halloween action.” When you mix that atmosphere with an insane clown, prison escapee, and a terrified girl, you’ve got the perfect ingredients for a fright night flight!

 

Staying on brand in a fun way, while simultaneously scaring you and making you laugh, is becoming giffgaff’s habit. Last year’s “Different Takes Guts” video, in which 100 people threw blood and guts at each other in a disused swimming pool got banned! Nice work. So here it is! I hope you have your vampire teeth in. Get ready to laugh until you faint. Watch the film above, and check out some of the awesomely gruesome film stills below. Happy Halloween! Read More

Death and the Maiden: Madame X, Tim Benjamin’s New Opera That Explores The Dark Side of the Art World

“…we shall all be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye…”

 

In honor of Halloween, we’re featuring Death and the Maiden: Madame X, which explores the darker side of the art world.  Tim Benjamin’s new opera was featured at the 2014 Grimeborn Festival of New Opera, and was on tour in the North-West in August and September 2014.

 

The plot follows the story of Masetto and Zerlina, a young immigrant couple. They’re impoverished, cold, and starving. Masetto, a brilliant portrait artist, is being ripped off by his unscrupulous agent, and circling art collectors will not take ”no” for an answer. Shivering in a shabby loft, struggling to make ends meet, and exploited by the wealthy collectors Lady Brannoch and Mr Wilmore, Masetto lives for his art, protected only by his muse and love, Zerlina. Their plight becomes increasingly perilous, desperate, and deadly, until at last: revenge.

 

Composer Tim Benjamin attracted acclaim in 2013 with his opera Emily. He had this to say about his new work: “Madame X takes its musical inspiration from the Italian operas of Handel, and from the Jacobean “revenge plays”. The story features all the plotting, ghostliness, madness and catastrophe expected from the Jacobean influence. It is full of both dark and light, tragedy and comedy, with a strong set of intriguing characters. Just as the libretto plays on the history of Art and the English language, the music plays on the history and languages of Western classical music. It is a piece with many familiar musical reference points, transformed and combined into a brand new, exciting work for the opera stage.”

 

Although Madame X recently finished it’s haunting first run, future performances of the opera will be announced. Be the first to find out by following them on Facebook or join their mailing list! Take a look at these two haunting trailers which feature both Benjamin’s haunting carnivalesque compositions, as well as tidbits of dialogue which lay the groundwork for this striking new opera. Privacy settings dictate that the trailers will have to be watched on the Madame X website, but viewing is only a simple click away. 

 

The painting featured in the trailer, and throughout the opera, is a delightfully evil take on John Singer Sargent‘s “Portrait of Madame X.” You can also access more of Tim Benjamin’s ambient and electronic compositions on his Soundcloud Page. Read More

Stunning Photos of Calcified Birds and Bats Found at African Lake

Stunning Photos of Calcified Birds and Bats Found at African Lake

These unusual photos, just in time for Halloween, showcase five creatures: a stony swallow, a mummified bat, an eagle, a flamingo, and a dove, all calcified along northern Tanzania‘s Lake Natron (map), which contains so much soda and salt that it would “strip the ink of my Kodak film boxes in a few seconds,” according to photographer Nick Brandt.

 

Lake Natron is located near a volcano, which spews alkali-rich natrocarbonatites that end up in Lake Natron via rainwater runoff. Brandt had found the creatures upon the shore, perfectly preserved by the lake. Apparently, the creatures are so calcified that if you pick them up, their bodies will remain in the same position they were found in. Though not evident in these black-and-white photographs, Lake Natron has has a distinctly red color, which comes from the lake’s cyanobacteria. Check out the photos. Read More

Victorian Era Headless Photographs

Victorian Era Headless Photographs

We’ll file these photos, which were created using double negatives, under the “just in time for Halloween” category as well as the “WTF” category. Take a look! Read More