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N. Lloyd

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Personal Statements: How To Write A Brilliant UCAS Personal Statement
Personal Statements: How To Write A Brilliant UCAS Personal Statement
Price: £4.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A detailed and accessible guide to writing the best possible university application..., 29 Jun. 2016
Applying for university can be an incredibly uncertain process and it's important to know how to advertise yourself as the best possible candidate for any institution. Writing my own UCAS personal statement was fraught with worry because my secondary school provided no real guidelines or support, so now that my nephew is approaching the same age I'm determined to make sure that he has the best possible application. If I'd had this available when I was applying then it would have saved me a great deal of stress and perhaps even increased my chances of gaining my first choice.

I would say that this guide is particularly useful if, like myself, you are the first in your family to attend university. It provides a step-by-step approach to the application process and detailed explanations of precisely what admissions tutors are looking for. It also includes examples of personal statements and helpfully deconstructs the paragraphs with further examples of how the language and content can be improved for the most effective possible application. There are many unique examples that display both a flair for individuality and competence which I can easily see as being incredibly attractive to universities.

A lot of this information is difficult to find online if you are unfamiliar with the university admissions process and dealing with UCAS. Here in this guide, the author has assembled everything you will need to write the best personal statement and the clearest advice and support for making that difficult transition from A-Levels to thinking about university and making a formal application. If you're considering going to university - whether as a young or mature student - or you're helping someone with their own application, then this guide is indispensable!

Quentin Crisp
Quentin Crisp
Price: £1.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A less subjective view of a man who was an expert in the subject of selfhood, 1 Dec. 2014
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This review is from: Quentin Crisp (Kindle Edition)
Everyone who has ever had the pleasure of reading Quentin Crisp's memoirs will know that while he was never a liar he was always eager to please and entertain. It's difficult to know where you stand with an author who identified as being totally acquiescent. A writer who sought to satisfy his readers like no other and a person who viewed himself in service to his audience - the human race in its entirety. I'm not suggesting that Quentin was dishonest in the portrayal of his life story but certainly in his later writings it's clear that embellishing a story or redefining the odd anecdote is something that he would view as being an intrinsic part of the 'smiling and nodding racket'.

Tim Fountain's book gives a more objective view of a figure he describes as a 'great, glittering contradiction'. Mr Fountain had the privilege of knowing Quentin during the final year of his life as he made preparations for the staging of his play, the tour-de-force that is 'Resident Alien' (In which Quentin was played by his friend, the divine Bette Bourne). This book is an immensely readable analysis of a man who many have found to be frustrating but who never wavered, never faltered and was always content to devote himself entirely to the profession of being.

I'm sure Quentin would approve of the bargain price. It eliminates any excuse for not buying the book and getting to know him.

The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall - Double Play (Blu-ray + DVD) [Region Free]
The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall - Double Play (Blu-ray + DVD) [Region Free]
Dvd ~ Ramin Karimloo
Price: £8.00

55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last the complete production on DVD and Blu-Ray!, 12 Nov. 2011
I have just received this on Blu-Ray (Which also includes a copy of the DVD in case you haven't upgraded yet) and it is wonderful. This is not a concert like the Les Miserables 10th anniversary, but the fully-staged production in its entirety. Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess are enchanting as The Phantom and Christine and the rest of the cast excel in their roles in what is a beautifully staged and directed show. The designs are as gorgeous and sumptuous as they looked when the much-missed Maria Bjornson first designed them a quarter of a century ago. The lighting is atmospheric, the costumes and make-up sublime and the music as iconic, memorable and powerful as it has ever been.

To cap it off, after the curtain falls on the show, the legend that is Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber makes a speech that pays tribute to all those who have made the production a success over the last 25 years. He is joined by the original cast on stage, including Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman, the latter of whom then performs with four of the actors to have portrayed The Phantom (Alas, not Michael Crawford but he joins in with everyone else on stage for the final line of 'Music of the Night'). There is only one Special Feature on the DVD version at least which is a documentary about the making of the Royal Albert Hall show and features interviews with the original choreographer and make-up designer. I've yet to check if the Blu-Ray disc itself includes any extra Special Features, but even if it doesn't this is still excellent value for money and a definite must-have for anyone who loves the show or musicals in general.

I personally feel that The Phantom of the Opera is the single greatest piece of entertainment of all time in any medium. This is a fitting tribute to a genuine phenomenon and one that I will treasure. It truly is a masterpiece and what happened in 1986 was genuine magic that has quite clearly endured and will continue to do so forever.

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie [DVD] [1969]
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie [DVD] [1969]
Dvd ~ Maggie Smith
Price: £6.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A true cinematic masterpiece but the DVD lacks features!, 9 Jun. 2011
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The film itself is excellent. A superb cast led by a flawless performance from Dame Maggie Smith, stylish direction that shows off the beauty of Edinburgh and makes every shot look like a work of art and a hauntingly beautiful score all make for what is in my view, one of the greatest films of all time. As an adaptation of Muriel Spark's original novel it is true to the essence of the story but a few aspects have been changed to make it work more coherently for the big screen. For example there are now 4 girls in the Brodie set as opposed to the original 6 and the seventh girl who arrived later in the book. This means that the four characters become composites of the missing girls and take on the characteristics that are most needed for the plot. The narrative is linear and doesn't make use of the flash-forward technique of the novel and so we don't see the future post-War fates of the girls or Miss Brodie herself. However, this in no way detracts from the film and it actually makes it far more engaging. While those elements worked brilliantly in the book, I can understand why their translation to film would cause complications and confusion - it simply isn't needed and the film works perfectly without those scenes.

However, as for this edition of the DVD itself, it lacks the Special Features that were included on the US Region 1 version and so that's the reason for me only giving it 4 stars. I don't understand why the commentary from director Ronald Neame and actress Pamela Franklin could not have been included. It's a great shame as I really would have enjoyed hearing their reminiscences of their time making the film and also their views on it so many years later. I also believe the US Region 1 version included subtitles for the hearing impaired and these are not included on this edition of the DVD either. I'm not hard of hearing myself, but I get quite irritated that subtitles aren't included on every DVD as it seems greatly insensitive to those who depend on them. As for the picture and sound quality, they are both great for the time in which it was produced but I feel the film would greatly benefit from being digitally remastered. Maybe when it gets a release on Blu-Ray this may be a possibility? But given how long it has taken for it to get a UK Region 2 release, I won't hold my breath. So if you do own a multi-region DVD player and can play US Region 1 DVDs then I would suggest you buy that version, if not then buy this version and while the lack of the commentary is disappointing it will in no way ruin your enjoyment of this true classic.

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