Monday, 20 May 2013

FedCon - Translation of "Freitag, 10. Mai 2013 - John Barrowman" report

Another lovely FedCon report from Nicole Oebel @, about John Barrowman's solo panel on May 10th. The misc notes made me laugh! :)

Original report in German here:
Translation below for your enjoyment :)

(As usual, I welcome any constructive feedback. If you see anything wrong with my translation, please let me know)


John Barrowman is without a doubt a born entertainer! His performance on the stage of FedCon on Friday evening was an explosion of humor, charm and general good spirit. Adorable cheeky double entendres and frank jokes seem to be an integral part of his personality. He doesn't hesitate to give himself body and soul, breaking into song or miming his stories. There were also quieter, more serious moments, and John Barrowman was wonderful through it all. He was great with this large audience, maintaining the amazing atmosphere in the venue while focusing on individual fans and the various questions and topics they brought up. Among acting and entertainment came the topic of John's sexuality and how he had always been open about it since the beginning of this career. After that, John was asked to sing and he chose to the main title of the musical "Anything goes", the one that launched his musical stage career. He also answered a few questions about the BBC Documentary "The Making of Me" (2008), in which he goes searching for the cause of his homosexuality. Each of his responses showed that it was important for him to make good use of his work in the entertainment industry as well as his popularity in order to speak up for gay rights. His heartfelt and inspiring shout "I love my job! I love my life!" summed it all.

The reason why John loves the role of Captain Jack so much is because it allowed him to become a role model and a hero for young gays, somebody on TV they find cool, because he's not afraid to be who he is. John then talked about the difference between "Doctor Who" and "Torchwood" and how different Captain Jack is in each show. While "Doctor Who" is clearly a family-oriented show, "Torchwood" is aimed at a more mature audience. In "Doctor Who", the Doctor is the main character, which allows Jack a bit more freedom to be cheekier, funnier and more facetious. On the other hand, in Torchwood, Jack has the role of the leader who's bearing the weight of the world on his shoulders and has to make choices such as sacrificing his grandson to save humanity. This decision was a terribly difficult one to make, but Jack felt that it was unavoidable. Barrowman also explained that the day after the episode was shown on TV, he was at the bakery when a lady came up to him and told him that she didn't approve of what he had done the night before as Captain Jack, that it was very shocking, however, she still liked him as a person. John also added how grateful he was of the mutual respect that exists between him and his fans. Whenever he can, he likes to spend time to take pictures with fans, but he also loves that he's able to go shopping alone or to a restaurant with his parents without being harassed.

Barrowman told us that he's glad to include himself in the ranks of the "Star Trek" geeks who are attending FedCon. He's got all the DVDs, and when he comes back home after a night on stage, he likes to watch an episode every night. However, it often lasts until late in the night, because he can't stop himself and keeps watching for hours. It's impossible for him to say who his favorite Captain his, just as he can't answer the question about his favorite Doctor. He loves the series and how the storyline developed, but to him, this is thanks to all the captains. He admitted however having a weak spot for Scott Bakula. He incidentally spoke about the time he asked him for an autograph, in front of a very large audience, but since he didn't have any paper, he let Bakula sign his butt cheek. He would have loved to tattoo his autograph, but his partner Scott Gill would have had something to say about that. He also spoke about the time he got to meet Larry Hagman. As someone who grew up watching "Dallas", he felt very honored to receive a signed cowboy hat that belonged to J.R. Ewing as well a a pair of cowboy boots. When asked if he would accept a role on the new version of Dallas, he said he wouln't refuse, however he thinks that the show as taken a strange turn now.

Fans of "Arrow" have noticed lately that Colton Haynes and John Barrowman have formed a great team; they get up to all sorts of silliness to entertain each other on their common flights. Every fangirl would like to be a fly on the wall to see th eir antics. One very early morning, while everyone was asleep, Barrowman performed a mix of  modern dance and acrobatics which he concluded with a "jazz run" along the aisle of the plane. Colton filmed the whole sequence. His run was cut short however when he tripped and landed on a fellow passenger. He rushed to first class, where the other passenger couldn't follow him to complain. One can only imagine the fun Colton had while filming the whole thing! When asked the well-known question of whom he would shag, marry and throw over a cliff among his 'Arrow" colleagues Stephen Amell, Colin Donnell and Colton Haynes, he answered that he would throw Stephen over a cliff, because he would survive it; he would shag Colin, because he has a very nice butt; lastly, he would marry Colton, because he's always wanted to know what it's like to be a "daddy".

The audience also got an anecdote about Whiskey. His two favorite brands have something to do with his name. The first one is called "Barrogill", and John was so excited about the name - which is a play on words on his name and his partner's - that he bought the whole stock. So, when he gives out a bottle for special occasions, he likes to tease people and joke that he bought a distillerie, claiming it's something he's also very interested in. His other favorite brand is Jim Beam, J.B -  his initials.

In this lively and friendly atmosphere, in which the audience and John were basking, came the story told by Ben Browder ("Farscape"): Ben told that very strange and loud noises could be heard coming from John's room the night before. John explained that it was around 4:30 am, they were dancing naked to Mumford & Sons and they had the the most fun! According to him, it's very liberating and exhilarating to dance naked around the house. He advised us all to try this at home at least once. Despite the time extension, the amazing panel with John Barrowman came to an end way too soon. John left the stage to a standing ovation, and we were left feeling that we would have liked him to stay even longer.

Miscellaneous notes
  • While he was on stage, he got a visit from someone who was wearing a bedsheet over their head. John immediately recognized him thanks to his boots, and told us it was Casper the friendly ghost (Casper Van Dien from "Starship Troopers").
  • During a shooting break on the set of "So You Think You Can Dance", he got stuck with half a banana down his throat, while trying to demonstrate "something" to Jamie Redknapp's wife. But he eventually managed to dislodge it completely.
  • His favorite Disney princess is Ariel, because of her flowing hair.
  • He's allergic to latex, which is why he'll never play the role of the Phantom in "Phantom of the Opera".
  • He's now played all the musical roles that are important to him. He's not played in "Les Misérables" though, as he finds the show too long for him.
  • When asked which aspect of his job he prefers - singing, acting, etc. - he generally never answers, as it would lead him to not receiving any more offers for the aspect he didn't label as favorite.
  • Regarding the kissing scenes with James Marsters, he incited the "Torchwood" director to do six takes, just to annoy James Marsters.

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