Well, you know what they say about good intentions. I could claim that signing up for NaBloPoMo was what cursed me, but I ought really to blame my own hopelessness for the fact that nearly a week has passed and I've not blogged a single word. Not that I imagine this frustrates anyone as much as it does me, but it does frustrate me — so here I am. And yet inspiration is still lagging behind, so all I can offer for now is a few bullet points. They'll fill the gap, and I hope to be back shortly — maybe even tonight! — with something a little more substantial.
- A few newspaper articles are worth pointing out, in case you've not seen them already. "Opera Australian?" has a range of views from Richard Mills, Andrew Ford and others about the appointment of Lyndon Terracini and the future of Opera Australia. In the SMH, Marcus Westbury asks if we should be funding opera; and The Age has a response from Richard Gill, who, by the way, now has a characteristically entertaining blog.
- Meanwhile, The Australian brings us the unhappy news that Lisa Gasteen's neck injury might have stopped her singing for good. The only time I've heard Lisa live was in one aria at Opera Australia's 50th Anniversary Gala. I've always just assumed I'd hear her in an opera one day; now it looks like maybe not. Which would be a real shame. So fingers crossed she'll find a way back.
- Speaking of Lisa, I note that Opera Australia has yet to announce her replacement as Minnie in La fanciulla del West. And apart from Anthony Warlow, we still don't seem to have a cast for Pirates of Penzance. Come on, OA, enquiring minds want to know.
- A quick word of kudos to all involved in the concert at St Luke's in Roseville on Wednesday evening. A group of Con opera school students presented Figaro highlights and miscellaneous arias. I only found out about it a few hours before it started, but I'm glad I did, it was really very fun. Especially the chance to hear the two German exchange students Simone Lerch and Franziska Guendert (Franziska's Letter Scene from Werther was particularly fabulous); not to mention a pretty amazing "Dove sono" from Ali Manifold and much baritonal hilarity from David Hidden and Javier Vilarino.
- Finally, let me once again plug The Mad Scene, our new(ish) Facebook group devoted to operatic insanity both here in Sydney and further afield. We've changed address since the initial announcement — the vagaries of Facebook mean we work better as a Page than a Group — but meanwhile the madness continues, and if you haven't joined in yet, well, you should. Number obsessive that I am, I'm hoping we can make it to 100 members by the end of the year.
And for my next trick ... I'm not entirely certain. If all else fails, I'm considering running a random "My Favourite Singers" series and just effusing over various objects of my devotion. Suggestions welcome. There's Pinchgut's L'Ormindo on the horizon too, of course; and if you or somebody you know has a concert coming up, do let me know — I'm obviously in need of an opera fix, however small. I might even consider Messiah.