St. Valentine has a different significance in many different countries and cultures. You can easily see that at Wikipedia if you want to know more. I am only bringing this up because Opera York produced 2 concerts around that time: One in The McMichael Canadian Art Collection in Kleinberg, another in the famous Arts and Letter Club in downtown Toronto. The common denominator is love, the love of music, that brought dozens of people out to these 2 venues to taste Mozart’s version of love between people. What perfect places to revel in the famed arias of this opera, which will come to a full production on March 3 at 7:30pm and on March 5 at 2pm.
Performing was a favorite of mine, Andrew Tees who we remember well from his Barber of Seville at Opera York. His warm bass baritone makes even the most blasé music lover surrender. Austin Larusson, a baritone, fit in so very well with the trio, that was completed by the very talented Holly Chaplin, who will be the Queen of the Night in the full opera. Both these venues have art surrounding the performance space, which brings me to why an experience in such places makes it especially important.
When I grew up in Germany my mother often quoted to me from many people, but there were especially Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and Rabindranath Tagore. The pearls of wisdom , often repeated, served as a stable datum for me during my lifetime, specially the ones about art. I am a painter, visual artist, as well as a writer/poet, and I was a performer. In researching this project I came across a quote from Tagore I had not heard of before: “ The world speaks to me in colours, my soul answers in music.”
How true, these two things are intrinsically intertwined, and very much so in my life. My mother brought the eastern and western cultures together into my life. And if I sometimes balked on her “preaching”, as I called it then, I am grateful to her now. She was so right, and I am living it, as are you, right here in Canada.
How wonderful is that?!