Saturday, January 01, 2011



And here, on 1.1.11, are a selection of 7 Top Reasons to Welcome 2011:

1. Last night our home was the unexpected host of a proposal and subsequent engagement at midnight. CONGRATULATIONS, RUSTEM AND DANIELA! With you around, who needs Wills & Kate? And a huge Mazel Tov to my beautiful Ozzie cousin Mandi and her bridegroom Dean, who tied the knot in sunny Sydney the other day. May 2011 be a year of weddings!

2. Hugh Canning has named the London Philharmonic as Best Orchestra of 2010 in his Sunday Times Best & Worst of the Year. Bravo, orchestra-in-law!

3. The New Year's Day Concert from Vienna was full of Liszty Czardasy stuff and there will be lots and lots and LOTS more to look forward to in the Liszt Bicentenary.

4. Some really good people got New Year Honours, including MBEs for the admirable and energetic Simon and Pamela Majaro of the Cavatina Trust, an OBE for composer Colin Matthews and a CBE for composer/presenter Howard Goodall. Best of all, there's a Damehood for the glorious Felicity Palmer, mezzo gloriosa.

Admittedly, as Michael White points out in the Telegraph, the precise ranking may be disputable. Still, it is good to see anyone in classical music receiving due recognition at the moment. (By the way, we're still waiting for Dame Tasmin. I don't know how these things work, but it's scandalous that our leading British violin soloist has never been awarded any official honour whatsoever.)

5. Glyndebourne is doing Meistersinger this summer, with Vladimir Jurowski conducting and David McVicar directing. Roll over, Bayreuth...

6. I have some terrific projects on the go. For now, let's just say that they may pop up in such diverse locations as San Francisco, Australia, France, Suffolk and the Middle East.

JDCMB housekeeping has taken place in the sidebar and involves weekly links to interesting musical Youtube channels, plus a shameless plug via which you may advertise here, take part in a writing course, etcetera, etcetera.

7. Katie Fforde this morning tweeted the adorable idea that we are now living in the Elevenses. Here's to honey for all!

Happy New Year, folks, with lots of love from me, the Tomcat and Solti.