Friday, 11 March 2016

Back to the 80s and Spinach and Ricotta Tortellini

This week has been a whirlwind as it's now the 2nd of the three performances of Back to the 80s.  Today is my planned day off from being in uni, but I also unexpectedly ended up being at home for quite a lot of yesterday too.  Yesterday's time at home was spent watching an episode of Red Dwarf, reading Ally Sheehan's blog and making final prop preparations for the show, while this morning has also been spent reading Ally's blog as well as taking Rent quizzes, and thinking about who I would audition for if BUSOM were to do Rent for our main show (I want to take a chance and go for a main part, but the only role I can think of that would suit me and who I am is Joanne).  Here's my diary of the last few days of show week!

Monday 7th March 2016 - 3 days left

Tonight (Monday night) marked the tech rehearsal and the start of show week. I spent the first half backstage being quiet, trying not to be in the way, having a solo party whenever nobody else was backstage, and waiting for my scene (Act 1 Scene 5). However, during the second half, I was at the audience side of things (which I can't do after now) and was laughing and clapping and singing along. I love the energy that everyone is putting into it, and I know that they can bring even more energy to it over the next few nights. I'm so proud of everyone. Tomorrow (Tuesday night which is technically now today) is the dress rehearsal, where I get to see all the costume ideas I had with each cast member come to life.

Showtime is nearly upon us!  #backtothe80s #mainshow #musicals #musicaltheatre #teambradford
Posted by Bradford University Society of Operettas and Musicals (BUSOM) on Monday, 7 March 2016

Tuesday 8th March 2016 - 2 days left

This evening, we past the 48 hours before the show mark and also had our FINAL rehearsal! I've now finally seen everyone's costumes brought to vivid life and they all look amazing and there's plenty of tie-dye T-shirts made at our fundraising event a month ago. Apart from my singular scene in Act 1 and the finale, I was backstage for the entirety of the dress rehearsal, but it all sounded really amazing. Once again, I'd like to say that I'm really proud of the cast and the rest of the production team, and tomorrow's night off is very well-deserved!

We got through cue-to-cue yesterday in one piece! But tonight everyone is in costume for our dress rehearsal - bright...
Posted by Bradford University Society of Operettas and Musicals (BUSOM) on Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Wednesday 9th March 2016 - 1 day left

It's now just over 21 hours until we start our first performance of Back to the 80s! We've had a night off from rehearsal today, so I'm going to go to sleep early for once and then I'll be around RamAir tomorrow (although not promoting the show on air myself unless someone asks me to), before going to the theatre. During shows on RamAir today, I have heard songs from the show including Video Killed The Radio Star, Kids In America and I'm Gonna Be 500 Miles, and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, as well as plenty of other 80s hits! I'm pretty sure other BUSOMites listened in to these shows and sent messages to our shoutbox for requests.

Our Mr Cocker can't believe it!We can't believe it! Tomorrow is our opening night for Back to the 80s! There's still...
Posted by Bradford University Society of Operettas and Musicals (BUSOM) on Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Thursday 10th March 2016 - IT'S TODAY!!!

IT'S TODAY!!! Tonight we start Back to the 80s for the next 3 nights and all our hard work over the past 3 (or 6-10) months will actually be seen by people. I'm both really excited and super nervous. I've unexpectedly ended up at home today, so I'm going to watch a couple of episodes of Red Dwarf before lunch, watching some TV, then heading back to Bradford for the show.

It's here! Opening night is tonight! We hope you're as excited as we are!#loveBUSOM #backtothe80s #openingnight...
Posted by Bradford University Society of Operettas and Musicals (BUSOM) on Thursday, 10 March 2016

Friday 11th March 2016

Last night's opening performance of Back to the 80s was pretty fantastic, and I can't wait for tonight's and Saturday night's performances, especially with even more people I know coming!

Saturday's performance is sold out, but if you're EXTRA SUPER-QUICK, you can still buy tickets for tonight's performance HERE.  Tickets are £10 in full or £8 for concessions (including students).

Spinach and Ricotta Tortellini

One of my favourite meals after a BUSOM rehearsal is spinach and ricotta tortellini (otherwise known as "BUSOM pasta"), so I found this recipe at The Vegan Word to make a vegan-friendly version of the dish.


2.5 cups flour or preferably '00' grade pasta flour
1 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 recipe vegan ricotta (see below)
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic
125g spinach


  1. To make the tortellini dough, form a mound of flour on a clean workspace.
  2. Form a well in the flour and fill with the oil and some of the water.
  3. Mix the water into the flour, and repeat step 2 (forming a well, filling with water, and mixing the flour and water together) until all the water is incorporated into the dough.
  4. Knead the dough for a minute or two and form into a ball.  Cover in cling film and leave to rest 30 minutes.  In the meantime, you can prepare the spinach and ricotta filling.
  5. To prepare the spinach, heat a tablespoon or so of vegetable oil over medium heat in a frying pan or wok.  Once the wok is hot, add the minced garlic and sauté until just browned.  Add the spinach and stir, stir frying until it wilts, then remove from heat.  Squeeze out the water and mix the spinach into the ricotta recipe (which follows).
  6. To roll out the ravioli dough, divide the dough into 3 sections.
  7. Sprinkle some flour on a clean counterspace.  Put the first third of the dough on the counter, sprinkle some more flour on top, and roll out the dough with a rolling pin, as thin as you can roll it.  If you have a pasta machine, follow the instructions on your machine to roll out the dough.
  8. Place 12 spoonfuls of the spinach-ricotta filling on the dough, stopping half along the length of the piece of dough, and keeping it as evenly spaced as possible. You’ll probably want two rows of 6.  Now, fold the piece of dough in half, so the half without fillings on is resting on top of the piece with the fillings.
  9. Press down and around each dollop of filling, pressing the air out and sealing the two pieces of dough together, creating pieces of ravioli.
  10. Now, with a knife or ravioli cutter, cut out squares of ravioli along each piece of filling.
  11. Repeat steps 7-9 with each other piece of dough.  Cook the tortellini in boiling water as soon as possible after cutting them.  If you're not going to cut them immediately, you can freeze them.
  12. To cook tortellini, place in a pot of boiling water.  It will be ready when it floats to the surface of the pot (which should happen in 2-3 minutes).  Serve.

Vegan Ricotta


1 package (approx 1 lb) firm tofu, drained and pressed
1/2 cup cashews
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1 tsp tahini, optional
1 tsp white miso, optional
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
fresh black pepper to taste
Italian dried herb mix to taste


  1. In a spice grinder, grind cashews until fine.
  2. In a food processor, blend cashews, tofu, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, nutritional yeast, tahini, miso, basil, black pepper, and Italian herb mix until it forms a thick paste.
  3. Adjust seasonings to taste.

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