Thursday, June 02, 2005

The Elgar conundrum

Tom & Jess Elgar house
Originally uploaded by Duchenj.

Here's a picture of me & Tom outside the Elgar Birthplace Museum yesterday. If you've never been, go and see this place - it's wonderful, full of treasures, exquisitely maintained by a team that knows its Elgar inside out and backwards.

Our concert was in the visitor centre and I can say, rather smugly, that it was quite full...We got interviewed live on BBC Radio Hereford too! Most flattering of all was that Elgar's great-niece turned up. And she told us all about the time she met Uncle Edward when she was a little girl.

Well, the evening seems to have been a real success. We got home about midnight feeling exceedingly pleased with ourselves.

Here's the conundrum: beforehand, for weeks, I felt FRIGHTFUL. Lots of those last-thing-at-night conversations with Tom in which I came up with many permutations of "Why the hell are you making me do this? I'm a writer, for God's sake!" During the journey to Worcester, I found myself wishing that the car would break down or I'd collapse or - well, anything rather than have to do the concert. But then afterwards I felt FABULOUS. This was a day we'll both remember fondly for the rest of our lives. As Tom says: "Of course it's always easier to do nothing, but..."

So there we are. It's torture. It's misery. And now we can't wait to do it again. Ridiculous? Totally. True? Oh yes.

Elgar would have been 148 today. Happy birthday, Uncle Edward!