May 18th, 2003


(no subject)

Elaine did not make it and K was sick, so I had extra tickets to the concert. Paul was able to offer two of the three to some students who looked like they wouldn't mind saving the money, so I'm delighted. I hate to see tickets go to waste. That made me think of a program we could launch, that I remember other groups having. We could make arrangements to provide tickets to music students and others who might not otherwise be able to scratch up enough to go to our concerts but who would like to go. People could donate, pay for these tickets, and offer them to schools and other groups.

I thought of several things we could be doing, to increase public awareness of the chorale, that we have not done lately. I have wanted to do a video on the chorale for some time, for one. Tape rehearsals, interviews with Tom, Susan, members, others, Focus perhaps on one or two sections of a piece and show how it comes together, ending in a performance. The video could be shown on public access television.

It is true that the audience for choral music is not as great as for some other kinds, but when people have known about our concerts they have packed the hall. It does not matter that the performances are not perfect. The music is live, the interpretations are excellent, the orchestra always does a good job, especially considering they tend to have about a week to prepare. And I do believe our love of the music comes through. More than that, I hope.

Last night's performance was one of the most grueling for me. Learning the notes was not the hard part; singing correctly, paying attention to every note, was. It was exhausting but gratifying. I think that I personally sang better than I have before, that I am gradually gaining in ability. Tom, super musician that he is, demanded a lot of us. I know he wanted more yet than we ultimately gave him, but he was nevertheless warmly congratulatory at the end.

I had never sung "in the French style" before, so this was new to me. Tom told us Poulenc did not like Faure's requiem, because he thought it too much like Brahms, too emotional, not "French". But there are clear differences between Faure and Brahms, how they are performed. The rhythm is constant, no rubato, the lines are to be sung distinctly yet connected, flowing. I felt it had elements of the Baroque style as well as the classic, not typically romantic music.

I will no doubt be hearing sections of Vivaldi and Faure for days now, in my head. I always want to perform it again.

(no subject)

One plus side to last night's concert was that I had friends there. I wasn't able to have Elaine or Karen but Pat and Art and Paul were there for sure. I did not find Carolyn afterwards so I am not sure what happened there.

The four of us went out after, to Denny's. Almost every eating place shuts down after nine or ten, so Denny's was one of two I know where we could go. We all had dessert-like things. I so rarely do anything like that, although I have often had dinner after a concert (not able to eat before, at times).

We had a good conversation, I thought, and it was great to see Pat and Art and to know they were there for me. I have seen Pat in many plays, love to see her, and it is wonderful that she can sometimes see me in my field of performance, even though I don't stand out like she does. I am also pleased that Paul came. Friendship takes work, showing up when you say you will.

I used to love playing the piano in front of an audience. That performing bug and the musical bug will always be part of me. I am lucky to have such an outlet, where I can be part of a musical performance without having the intense pressure of being a soloist. Not that I haven't wanted to develop my voice well enough to do a little solo in a small group performance some time. Sometimes small ambitions are enough.

my trip to Las Vegas

"La Femme" is a first for America and Las Vegas, a show direct from one of the hottest nightspots in the world, the original Crazy Horse in Paris, famous for its productions celebrating beautiful woman and the art of the nude since 1951.
"La Femme" uses a combination of light effects, film, and projections to create dramatic effects: some subtle, some humorous and all sensual. All 12 of the international collection of dancers are members of the original Crazy Horse dance troupe. La Femme dancers are trained in ballet and perfectly integrate into sensuous choreography as their bodies are bathed in colored and textured lighting designs. For more than 50 years this French cultural phenomenon has drawn international and U.S. celebrities such as Madonna, Warren Beatty, Sophia Loren, Elizabeth Taylor, Sting, and Elvis Presley. Guests must be at least 21 years of age to attend "La Femme." Business casual attire required.

I know a few people who would undoubtedly enjoy this show more than I will, but tough!! I'll be the one going. Should be a kick.


Speed demon that I am, I made it here in less than seven hours, including five stops - four bathroom, one gas. I got behind some slowish vehicles on two-lane highways, but broke free in the four-laners. No bad slow-downs on my side of the road. Didn't look so hot on I-15 southbound.

I always enjoy this trip. My car hums along with no problem, I love the MOjave Desert - windmills, joshua trees, the beautiful jets in the Mojave airport, the loooong junk yard with all the buses near Barstow, the look of the desert hills, studded with hardy plants, colored by reddish soil. I rarely run into traffic jams or snags, and I listen to music the whole way. It's long, yes, but my car is comfortable enough that I don't hurt my back or get achey. My knees do trouble me when I've been sitting a while, but that happens anywhere.

Neither Mary nor Elaine were home. Elaine is at the gym, Mary picked up Joey and is now visiting with a friend for a little bit. It's coooool in here...air conditioning....I've heard about that.