Lockdown Diary – 2020 – 123 – A Night at the Opera

Rather a long walk yesterday morning but returned by bus. Most people now wearing a mask. The freezer filling is coming along nicely and it’s such a pleasant change to see where everything is and what everything is. It won’t last, but nice for the moment.

So, the treat at the end of the day was an invite to Scottish Opera’s emerging artists’ end of term, as it were. Conducted by the genius of Derek Clark, the young people sang some delightful, sad or humorous pieces. This event normally takes place in the Theatre Royal, Glasgow with a chance to meet the performers, but like so many other organisations, they’re doing what the regulations permit: and it is better to hear these lovely voices than to not hear them. Information about them is here

DH won at croquet. I re-read the bits the ed doesn’t like and hope the re-drafting part of the brain will be in synch sooner rather than later. Finished April Lady. Not many of my collection left to go and then I need to work out which ones are missing. Caught up with one or two folk on the phone.



Lockdown Diary – 2020 – 92 – Rain Stopped Play

Was all set for my second face to face with a pal today but it’s raining where she is and will probably move north across the city.

Boo! Just when I was summoning up the resolve to GET ON A BUS.

I see a lively discussion on FB about the sheer boredom of cooking every day for people who aren’t natural cooks. I think I am a natural cook in so far as I enjoy taking raw ingredients and producing an edible meal. Like my writing, I regard it as creative and have always heard a little voice in my head directing my hand towards a particular spice jar or utensil.

However, I am totally with the ‘I may have had enough of this for now’ group. The two platters we’ve enjoyed from LeftField, the celebratory dinner from The Little Chartroom and the Afternoon Tea from Mimi’s have been so welcome.

From next week, there’s going to be a new name in ready-made home delivery service. Watch this space!

Spent the day immersed in editing as, to my surprise and delight, the ed asked for the full MS. It’s gone and I can slope back to fingernail chewing. (Actually, I don’t and never have done.) Attended Scottish Opera’s online schools’ work, FEVER. This brilliant scheme sees some of the professionals taking a script and songs into schools where a perfomance is given for parents. All online at present, but so amazing for the children to get such a chance. Also Zoom meet-up with friends. DH played bridge.

Fresh fish and chips for me – what’s your takeaway longing?


A – Z Challenge J is for Jenufa

Jenufa means at this moment nothing to me except that it’s the title role of the next Scottish Opera I’m expecting to see. I can’t find a meaning for the name online, but it is from Czech composer Leos Janacek. The composition of the opera, 1890s – 1900s, suggests a name that might have fallen from favour.

Try this Four star review of Jenufa from the Guardian

Like many productions, Scottish Opera’s is in conjunction with another company. This time a  Danish company. I did encounter two of its members recently, but see there’s a wee bit of dispute about which company. Once I have my hands on a programme, I’ll make that clear over on my website;

write, watch and critique plays.

Opera is a mysterious art form to many and yet in countries like Russia huge auditoria sell out every night. Much of those audiences will be children, often quite young children, and they’ll be dressed tidily, generally well-behaved and generally without a mobile phone in hand.

Get them young.

I came rather late to opera, but I’ve joined the converted. It’s the tops and meeting the artists informally after an unwrapped performance, for example, is so uplifting. They’ll be on a crest and they take you with them.

Jenufa’s story isn’t a happy one, but I bet the production, performance and event will be memorable.

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