Z cancels 6 engagements, but not the best one

I came down with a really filthy cold, my first since 2019 (I sailed through the Covid years) and was poleaxed for a couple of days. I had to cancel a lot of things, sadly – two theatre trips and a visit to London amongst them. The London visit should be tomorrow but, though I feel completely well again, my sister isn’t (she has enough sinus problems at the best of times, as well as asthma) and I wouldn’t really want to push myself to anything too tiring as yet. But I did go to a fabulous live-streamed (from the Royal Opera House) performance of Don Quixote at the local theatre and came home recommending to Wink, who didn’t feel up to it, that she see if she can watch it online. The leading roles (not Don Q himself, the young couple) were played by Mayara Magri and Matthew Ball, a couple themselves in real life. They were dazzlingly superb in demanding performances. Other dancers have also played the parts during the six-week run, which isn’t surprising as it would be a huge strain to dance, night after night. If you’ve been to see it, I envy you and, if you can catch it online (it is possible to subscribe but there’s a free 14 day trial) then it’s worth watching.

It made me think of other memorable performances and musical revelations in my life and I’m happy to realise that I appreciated so many of them. I’d like to recall them, set them down so that they’re renewed in my mind. Sometimes, a single performance (not necessarily live) has opened my ears to something new altogether and I feel very lucky to have recognised that at the time, on those occasions.

I went with a friend, who lives in Yagnub. She would usually walk to the theatre and I’d drive her half a mile home, but now that it’s dark early, I pick her up too. She’s in her late 80s and was a little daunted to find that, though the performance itself was a couple of hours long, there were two 25 minute intervals, which made it a latish finish. So I suggested that we could, if she liked, leave after the second act and that’s what we did. I dropped her off, went back and parked again and was in plenty of time for the third act. I was enjoying it far too much to miss.

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