Sunday, 15 August 2010

end of tour

We met a great deal of fascinating people on our recent tour: André-Gilles Duchemin, the Artistic Director of the Festival classique des Hautes-Laurentides, world-renowned flautist [taught by Galway amongst others] and a Canadian star - delightfully complimentary about our contribution to his festival. Also we met a lady who won the Prix de l'Europe and went to Paris in the 1950s to study with Nadia Boulanger [her pupil's pupil (Camille Nguyan) performed quite superbly as a prelude to us at Lanoraie]. At this concert we were offered the most splendid afternoon tea party with 9 separate teas, but there was also another link with the Prix de l'Europe; a previous winner (in 1929) was composer and baritone Lionel Daunais - in our Québec concerts we have been singing his excellent song about culinary matters, and the eponymous Québecois dish, La Toutière [Pork, potato & vegetable shortcrust pie]. We found we had been singing the song a few metres from where he lived, and that the townspeople are in the throes of saving his house from he developers.
No-one offered us any (so forgive me if the above description is a travesty) - although they confirm that it is eaten all the time!
We are on holidays for a while now before new photo session end of next week, a quick trip to California, and then on into rehearsals for our week at The Bridewell Theatre, accompanied by pianist Chris Hatt - (13th-18th Sept. at 7pm, & 3pm on Saturday):

Friday, 13 August 2010

small world

Wonderful gig at Huntsville. Goldie Hawn failed to show; must have been double-booked.
But a couple came up and said their daughter was an opera singer based in London... they turned out to be the parents of Gillian Keith, who I have sung with many times under the baton / auspices of our pianist for 12 years, Paul Plummer. The musical world as ever proves itself to be tiny. Real world feels less tiny after 6+ hour drive back to Montréal; still, Steve loves driving...
More open-air-ness tomorrow; weather news to follow.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Canada August

Another tour to our 'second home' of Canada this month; as ever, lots of variety; we have sung in a force 5 gale in the open air by a lake [Lanoraie] - "the wind isn't normally this bad at this time of year" - and in the wonderful L'Agora in Quebec City. The audience for this avoided the pleasure of free performances by Cirque du Soleil and Robert LePage, and were most enthusiastic.
Huntsville in the middle of cottage country north of Toronto...where the rich and famous have their holiday homes; I wonder how many will turn up tonight...

Huntsville ON

One of the joys of being on tour, found old film on TV, scored by the master Stephen Sondheim - Stavisky [1974] - & watched it too... Film has an appearance of a very young Depardieu. Wonderful to hear SS's music as a film underscore... he is in full pastiche mode as in much of A Little Night Music. Reminds me that Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote the score for The Odessa File.