Monday, July 30, 2007

Thomas and Isolde

We had a very wonderful evening celebrating Tom's birthday at a gorgeous venue close to Glyndebourne yesterday, kindly lent by the dear friend who lives there...highlights of a heady occasion included the presence of many friends from far-flung places, champagne with which our cup overflowed, our neighbour the fabulous jazz pianist who used to play on the Queen Mary, a lot of potato salad and a chocolate cake with sparklers on top that set off our generous host's fire alarm & produced a fire engine in the drive within minutes. The hunky Sussex fireman was then accused of being a strippergram, though Tom might have been mystified by that choice.

And Nina Stemme was there too, having wandered in unsuspecting with her family to explore the house as tourists during the afternoon, fresh from the Tristan dress rehearsal the day before; we rushed to add them to our guest list. Beg, borrow or steal a return for this production - it is one of the greats - and Nina towers at the top of it, surely one of most glorious Isoldes around. Above, the birthday boy with his Isoldegram.

Of course, Wagner's first draft was called Thomas and Isolde, but his publisher said that the sales and marketing department advised changing the hero's name to something not associated with tank engines. :-)