January has flitted by so quickly, I almost forgot about updating my blog. Having landed an office job for a couple of days a week has got me out and about with a little extra cash in my pocket!
Rehearsals have begun with The Brearley Singers, and I have also been busy editing their Holiday Video, which has about fourteen songs on it. Will be a lot of work, as there were a lot of cameras capturing various angles, as well as a few different sound tracks to sort through.
I have been in packing mode for Iceland. Taking a bag that gets checked in I thought would make this trip a little easier, but in fact it is just as difficult to pack a large bag as a small one – especially since I’ve decided to make a stop in the Canary Islands – so I will be dealing with three different climates. Iceland, England and Spain .. close to Morocco! I will be landing and going straight to the famous Blue Lagoon before heading to Reykjavik. I have booked some sightseeing tours that will get me out of the town, and then I will join my Arkansas friend for a two day road trip to Vik.
Although I had predicted a busy month, I didn’t realize how much fun it would be. Not only did I have the good fortune to spend a few days with a new friend in Bentonville, Arkansas, I also got to reunite with Alan, my 1970s boyfriend with whom I arrived in the USA many moons ago.
My good luck connected me with a young woman who is going to Iceland at the same time as me, in February. She kindly invited me to visit her in Bentonville, and since I had the time (and airmiles) I obliged. I already knew some history about Bentonville – it being where the headquarters of Walmart is situated, and that the Walton family (founders of Walmart) have bestowed a beautiful art museum in the lovely town. Also a hotel with an art collection to rival the Museum of Modern Art is also just off the town square. We also were lucky enough to stumble across a performance by the blugrass group, Sad Daddy, who are the embodiment of what the best bluegrass is about. They just blend their beautiful singing tones into their instruments and forge a mix that is sublime.
Montreal is where I spend several days, where I got to see the gorgeous townhouse that Alan remodeled. With several inches of snow, hiding treacherous ice, I didn’t venture very far afield, but also met up with old friends who were visiting their family at the same time. Lots of great food, great wine, and lively conversations, and a good amount of laughter. Although the temperatures plummeted down to below 0 Fahrenheit, I was warmed by the company and just the right amount of reminiscences to contemplate.
What’s going on, and what’s coming up:
It’s been a busy month so far … I am attempting to get my sleep patterns under control so as to prepare for Election Day when I have to get up at 4am, and work at my polling center all day and do my best to stay alert until I finish, hopefully before 11pm.
I have also got back to writing music – a few new instrumental pieces are in the works, and two of them are posted on my Music page. I’m also working on completing some new sculptural works, entitled Facets.
I’ve got a few social commitments with entertainment attached, and this month has been quite unusual with so many of them.
Joining Blue Hill Troupe (as a backstage worker) has so far proved to be a joyful experience. Soon I will get to see the fruit of my somewhat limited labor – a couple of hats made and some set painting – Gilbert & Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance. I’ve seen a rehearsal and I’m very excited to go see it next week.
Tonight I’m going to see The Other Mozart, an off Broadway piece about Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s sister. Will write more about it later.
And last night I saw Who Will Sing for Lena, an off Broadway play about a woman of color put to death in the electric chair for killing the man – her boss – who raped and terrified her, back in 1950s Georgia. A powerful one-woman show, which needs to be put on again — it was a one-day event. She was posthumously pardoned in 2005.
Tomorrow evening I will be attending a cabaret of music by members of the Peace of Heart Choir.
I am also going to begin another course at Manhattan Neighborhood Network, a public access TV Station, learning how to produce field TV shows. Will report on that after I start on Monday.
Monday evening it’s back to rehearsals with the Brearley Singers. Due to a scheduling snaffoo, I will miss our own concert, but I will be hard at work working on editing the resulting video from their December concert.
During the election, my dear cousin, Stuart Acker Holt will be staying with me from Europe, while he is doing a short film about getting the pulse of New Yorkers on the day of and the day after. I suspect that most people will be too exhausted and perhaps exasperated to talk about it, but hopefully he will get some lively and interesting footage as he cycles in a heart-shaped route around the NYC area to collect his sound bytes.
December will no doubt prove to be a fun month, too. Using some dusty old airmiles that I’ve had forever, I’m heading into the heartland of America to visit a new friend – and will be exploring Bentonville, Arkansas – with its world class art collection by the Walton family, founders of Walmart (Bentonville has Walmart’s headquarters), closely followed by a nostalgia trip to Montreal where I will see an old friend who I haven’t seen for several decades.