Saturday night out in London with Wu Ming…

Yesterday night I was at the ICA doing an event with Wu Ming 1 and Wu Ming 4, who were presenting their latest book Manituana. After a very brief intro from me, Wu Ming 1 opened things up with a short explanation of the collective writing activities he’s been embroiled in for many years as one part of the Wu Ming collective (and before that the Luther Blissett Project). Then there was an introduction to the new Wu Ming novel, after which I read a passage from the book that required a strong London accent. Having read live many times, yesterday I decided to record the passage in question, and it was played back while I lip-synced very badly. This was something new for me – and to make it even more pointless I’d waited until just a couple of hours before the event to make this recording – I enjoyed the absurdity of it so much that I may well repeat the trick! After my intervention, Wu Ming 4 gave an in-depth account of the genesis of Manituana. Wu Ming 1 spoke in English, Wu Ming 4 spoke in Italian with Shaun Whiteside translating.
For the last hour of the presentation, the Wu Mings took questions from the audience; and these quickly progressed from queries about how the four members of the Wu Ming group (originally five) wrote collectively, to their thoughts on left-communists such as Jacques Camatte and Amadeo Bordiga. I was impressed with both the depth and breadth of the answers, as well as with how relaxed the Wu Mings were on stage. Although I’ve been in contact with the Wu Mings for about 15 years now, I’d not seen them do a public presentation before, and it was quite a revelation! So if they’re ever somewhere near you – and I understand McKenzie Wark is hosting a Wu Ming event in New York in November – make sure you catch them! There’s no point in me summarising what the Wu Mings said yesterday here, you should check their website, and if possible catch them live!
And while you’re at it don’t forget to check – – you know it makes (no) sense!


Comment by Christopher Nosnibor on 2009-10-18 12:41:50 +0000

What’s a really good trick is to look like you’re lip-synching badly at the same time as you’re speaking… saves the hassle of recording, I find.
(I thought I’d refrain from making any Wu Ming the Merciless gags at this point.. d’oh!)

Comment by Zen Master K on 2009-10-18 13:10:42 +0000

And while you were out in the west end, i was having a threesome in the Big Blogger Flat with Tessie and Mister Dog!

Comment by Mu Wing on 2009-10-18 16:00:13 +0000

wot rubbish!

Comment by The Real Tessie on 2009-10-18 17:04:45 +0000

Try Scientology, you’ll last longer….

Comment by Groovy Canadian Book Slut on 2009-10-18 17:38:00 +0000

Wu Ming in New York? What use is that to a good book groupie who lives in British Columbia?

Comment by Michael Roth on 2009-10-18 17:43:17 +0000

The lip syncing bit sounds very funny. Maybe you can adopt this routine for everyday dealings with people as well.

Comment by Flash Gordon on 2009-10-18 18:32:02 +0000

Never fear, I’m here to battle Wu Ming and defend capitalism, and since they’re a bit tricky I might call up Captain Kirk and other reinforcements too!

Comment by Mu Wing on 2009-10-18 18:33:21 +0000

Wu Ming at all??

Comment by KLF on 2009-10-18 18:48:50 +0000

they’re justified and they’re ancient and they drive an ice cream van… ancients of mu mu, ancients of mu mu……

Comment by I. on 2009-10-18 19:03:39 +0000

stewar-t, you know what. And who. And where. Now.

Comment by I, Individual on 2009-10-18 20:21:26 +0000

Anyone here remember the seventies Ultravox (John Foxx version) associated band Gloria Mundi, the previous comment reminded me of them….

Comment by I. on 2009-10-18 20:53:54 +0000

very well then. Now you look for me yourself.

Comment by mister dog on 2009-10-19 14:00:12 +0000

What an even better trick if we were to lip-synch badly together at our next gig! (So fed up being stuck at the bottom of your underwear drawer.)

Comment by Old Rope on 2009-10-19 22:29:57 +0000

Did you not get bev-ed on Italian wine and do dances with no name?

Comment by mistertrippy on 2009-10-20 16:30:21 +0000

All that, and ate a load of good food too!

Comment by oldrope on 2009-10-23 16:04:21 +0000

Sounds delightful! In fact now I am hungry. Toast is the only recourse. I could try and pretend it is Italian toast. But that probably wont wash. Instead I will just call it “…”

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