A night at the Opera
As well as listening to JSM and Gaither Homecoming videos I often listen to Classic FM.
I have seen some classical performers perform, but I missed two performances I would have loved to see because of family issues. One was the Russian violinist Viktoria Mullova who performed in Bristol on my birthday many years ago; the other was the final UK performance of Schubert specialist Alfred Brendel.
The Brendel performance would have been especially nice for me as one of the first Classical tapes I had was Schubert's Fantasie in C major, Op. 15 D. 760, aka The Wanderer symphony; the tape had been a gift from an aunt who had died.
I have been to the opera, and I have been in one of the most famous operas - The Kirov Theater - I saw Lucia di Lammermoor performed by the Welsh National Opera many years ago in Bristol. This was the year after Bryn Terfel came second in the Singer of the World contest.
My lasting impression of the Kirov is that of the great social differences in Russia at the time; on one hand you had the splendor of the Kirov Theater while less than a stone's throw away people were forced to eat stale bread. When we docked in St. Petersburg we were greeted by children willing to give a bar of chocolate for a 10c tin badge. That bar of chocolate must have cost the family a lot to save up.