Occasionally there's a season when things come together, a season of fireworks, when I am allowed to scrub up, dress up, put on the slap and go out on the town instead of dressing down, enveloping myself in the massive and massively heavy family raincoat, trudging around the muddy fields with dog, walking stick and large hat jammed on head.
The past few weeks have been the answer to this blogger's prayers, not one but three such outings have been granted; I have been wallowing in culture, until I am almost drowning in the unaccustomed riches.
The Mid Wales Opera Company performed Mozart's 'Marriage of Figaro' in Ludlow.This is a company of young players and singers, all of them at the beginning of their careers, but true professionals giving of their best nevertheless.
The next outing was a visit to the theatre to see a performance of Pirandello's surreal masterpiece 'Six Characters In Search Of An Author' by the acclaimed Headlong Theatre Company under Rupert Goold.
Six Characters In Search Of An Author is a classic of modernism, a fundamentally subversive moment in the history of modern theatre. Its self-conscious setting, its fragmented narrative, confusing time levels and radical ideas caused an uproar at its first night on 9 May 1921.....
Hard work, yet very enjoyable and just the kind of challenge I like after several months of mud-wrestling and not much else.
And there was yet more! The City Of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra beckoned with a concert under its conductor Andris Nelsons playing three Romantics, Liadov, Rachmaninov and Dvorak. The fantastic young Pianist Nikolai Lugansky gave an absolutely virtuoso performance of Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3, which kept the audience in Symphony Hall on the edge of their seats. One of the men in our company was in tears at the end, I kid you not!
Treats like these make the realization that life in the country is
a permanent fact of life easier to accept. Country life has great advantages; having to fight my way through the crowds in Birmingham is not something I frequently hanker after, but I will gladly do so in order to experience a world class concert by gifted performers.
Valley's End is a gorgeous place; it is often said that there isn't a house that doesn't enjoy a spectacular view, the people are friendly and kind and the pace of life is quiet and calm. Just occasionally though, this blogger loves to partake of a different life, the life I left behind in the big city, a life of noise, dirt, excitement, traffic, crowded pavements, jostling people and rumbling, packed, trains.
Eh? Who am I kidding? Where would you rather live?