The House Of Annie Lennox

Make Yourself At Home In My Home Sweet Home, thats the introduction in the accompanying booklet to The House Of Annie Lennox which opened last week at The Victoria And Albert Museum in London (£1 from the V&A).  The display is perfectly produced and executed with such attention to detail.  

 

As you approach the room, you see a large wall welcoming you to the house before you proceed through the door with Annie’s birth year 1954 as the house number.  Instantly you are greeted by Annie’s house in the middle of the room, with 3 of the 4 exterior walls dedicated to displays and the far wall to Annie’s costumes.

 

 

The 3 walls are all decorated in white and a black velvet ceiling with sparkly stars and black and white chequered floor sets the mood along with a piece of music called Butterfly that Annie has composed specifically for the exhibition, as we know, Annie loves a butterfly in Spring on The House Of Me website!  The 3 white walls are also used to project a range of images creating a real sense of movement in the space.

 

There is a good selection of awards, platinum discs, 46664 and Sing memorabilia, as well as some more unusual pieces like Annie’s mask and heart shaped pill box, old tourists t-shirts and badges.

 

The area of most interest for me was Annie’s desk inside the house itself, as you open the drawers some of the most interesting items of memorabilia are revealed, especially the lyric sheets of a number of songs that show how the songs start and evolve into the final piece.  Of particular interest were the lyrics for Thorn In My Side, which are really very harsh in comparison the those of the final song, take a look at this picture below, and compare the verses that we have typed out here for you to read.  

Thorn In My Side Lyrics

you gave me such a bad time

you tried to hurt me but now i know

thorn in my side

you know that’s all you ever were

a bundle of lies

you know that’s all that is was worth

i should have known better

but i trusted you at first

i should have known better

but i got what i deserved

 

to run away from you

was all that i could do

 

thorn in my side

you know that’s all you’ll ever be

so don’t think you know better

cause that’s what you mean to me

i was feeling complicated

i was feeling low

now everytime i think of you

i shiver to the bone

				

Thorn In My Side

That’s all you ever were

A barbed wire fence

Around a hypocrites curse

Now i’ve pulled out your confessions

Your two faced lies

Worn through your delusions

Your thin disguise

You fool, you petty thief

Get back to where you came from

You low down cheat

Don’t you ever dare

To darken my door (again)

With that cloud burst shadow

On my rain spilled floor

i’ll never be your friend

You’ll always be my enemy

 

				

 

 

The costumes that have been selected give a good career progress through the Tourists to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, and my only criticism is that even when they are spotlighted, the lighting is too dark to really appreciate the costumes in their glory, however, i feel this is to preserve them, as elsewhere in the museum, most costumes seem to be quite dimly lit.

 

As you exit the house you are presented with a gallery of photos on the wall, as well as the embelished Alice Temperley canvas print we have seen before based on the picture at the top of this piece. I was particularly pleased to see this photo from Gerard Mankowitz displayed, it was the photo that Record Collector selected for the feature i first wrote many year ago for them!

 

Videos from Eurythmics Ultimate Collection, The Annie Lennox Collection and God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen were playing on a large screen and underneath is a visitors book for you to sign.

 

The House Of Annie Lennox is perfect, you can really see the effort that has gone into selecting the items that have been chosen, but also, realising, that Annie could probably fill another 10 rooms, so maybe we’ll see The Mansion Of Annie Lennox one day!

 

 

With thanks to Jan, we are able to give you a walk around, and photo gallery that gives you a great impression of the 2 areas.

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