Well here we are with another week beginning and today has been a good mixture. It was good to start the day with a welcome to the Flowering Tree principals - the always delightful elder statesman Sanford Sylvan, and two youngsters Natasha Jouhl and Noah Stewart. What a trio they make! And the brilliant young Portuguese conductor Joana Carneiro was in charge as I am sure she will remain with her great natural authority over the coming weeks. Nicola Raab, who is directing this production after her remarkable work with Beatrice and Benedict last year was in with the music rehearsal this morning. I stayed just a few minutes to get them started - I will be back later.
Meanwhile Don Giovanni has completed its Act 1 "blocking" and there was a run through review at 11.30 which I had to miss. But I will get the whole shebang on Saturday afternoon all being well. However there are fine goings on at the Act 1 finale party which I managed to observe before I had to return to more sober activities in the office. And here right are the moderating forces of Anna, Elvira and Ottavio prior to their entry on the scene. All three of them Canadians by the way!
We had the second of our young artist recitals at the Chicago Cultural Center at noon. This time it was two graduates of Northwestern, Matt Hanscom and Hannah Dixon, with an excellent program of Mahler and Samuel Barber. There was a terrific crowd there. The city does a remarkable job in getting an audience to these "Classical Mondays" week after week. They are important.
I had a happy lunch with Scott Gilmore who is in charge of our music preparation as well as being overall supervisor of our Diploma Program at Roosevelt. We took the opportunity to discuss the developments there, and even to do some casting of the 2009 COT understudies many of whom will come from the current members and next arrivals in this excellent program which we have developed together so successfully. It is one of the rare examples of advanced development and training for singers being pursued in both conservatory and professional opera company settings simultaneously. I think that it is doing well.
This evening we have a diversion on the form of Beethoven's 9th symphony conducted by Jane Glover at the Auditorium Theater - together with the Choral Fantasy. This is the annual Chicago College of the Performing Arts fund raiser. I will be there, as a Board member and enthusiastic supporter, at a pre-performance party from 5.30. If I am lucky I will be home by 10.30.
And tomorrow is Tax Day - so early to the post office to get those returns in the mail!