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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Celebrations, October 3 2014

Once upon a time, not so long ago, a lady who wrote decided to set up a blog hop to celebrate the things that made her happy, whether or not they merited a 21-gun salute.  She ran the idea past her friends and co-bloggers and everyone agreed that it was a great idea.  And so the Celebrate the Small Things blog hop began.  Why don't you join?  it might make you smile (See the bottom of the page for details)

A lot of nice things have been happening.  I rediscovered a lovely little CD I bought a while back and have been singing my made-up words to con te partira (time to say good-bye).  Here it is on YouTube.  (Do click to end the advertisement):

Interesting enough, though I don't play an instrument, unless you count a Recorder, sort of, or a Kazoo, I've always been a little musical.  Music seems to 'firm up' things for me, or condense them.  This particular instrumental piece served as a sort of theme for my recent book Mourningtide (Book 2 of The Memphis Cycle), which chronicles a powerful man's passage through grief at his eldest son's death through a very stupid mistake.  The man, a king, makes his way through his loss and heartbreak and finds peace and love again.  Somehow, that tune expressed it for me.  Very hard to explain.  But now I have it back to listen to, remember and enjoy.  (I reread the story, too and I have to say that I liked it.)

I also received the delivery of the 10th Anniversary concert (Royal Albert Hall) of Les Miserables., along with a two CD set.  In this production they gathered the actors that they thought did the absolutely best performances of their parts.  One of them, a distinguished Australian actor named Philip Quast, played the part of Inspector Javert.  Quast has won several Olivier Awards (as prestigious in live performance circles, as an Oscar).  Unlike some in that production, though he had presented a splendid interpretation of the Police Inspector, Javert, he rethought the part, honed it, and delivered a breathtaking performance.  (see below - but do click to end the adverts)


Javert's soliloquy.  I could wish they had done the hair and makeup differently.  A para-military type of that era would not have worn his hair long.  It was out of style and it was conducive to being seized (by the hair) and disabled.  But I digress in the way of writers of historical fiction: 

And listen to that passage at 2:38 where he holds that soaring note.

I do love baritones.

As I said, I have the DVD of the concert, which is nice and does Not feature the man in front of me at my first viewing of Les Miserables in 1988 with the head the size of a pumpkin, who kept sitting bolt upright and swinging his skull about during the most important songs.  I wanted to relieve him of his skull and hurl it out the window for him but, alas, the Civil War Navy Cutlass that my late father willed to me was safely at home.  He lived to annoy another theatre-goer.  (I did thank him after the performance...)

You can never find a good sword when you need one!
We must learn to bear our griefs and celebrate our joys.  In my case, the CD of that performance is currently in my car's CD player and I have been belting out those two songs at the top of my alto lungs.  It has been delicious!  I had forgotten.

Driving along, pretending that I can sing well outside the shower stall - what greater felicity can there be?  Saturday coming lickety-split, that's what!

What are you celebrating?
The buy link (Amazon US) if you are interested.


  1. What an absolutely wonderful post! Music is good for the heart and the soul. Enjoy your weekend.

    1. Thank you, Marilyn! I've been rediscovering a number of CDs I've loved (and misfiled). It should be a nice weekend -yours, too!

  2. That is a lovely CD. The songs. . . and the voices. . .give me chills everytime.

  3. I love musicals. Love, love, love, love them. Les Miserables is a great one, and Phantom of the Opera is right up there.

    These are great celebrations.

  4. Belting out songs is fun! Love the music from Les Mis

  5. Music does amazing things to our imaginations, that's for sure. Happy Friday!

  6. I love music! I played clarinet from 5th through 12th grade. I wouldn't say I was particularly good at it, but I enjoyed the experience and I'm glad that I did it. My 5 year old wants to play the guitar, and my 3 year old is demonstrating a talent for playing drums. Our house may be quite musical before long!

  7. Just playing your con te partira; bittersweet memories. I had driven to Arkansas from San Diego with my 18-year old Himalayan. She was very sick - and it was time to take that trip to the vet. Time to Say Goodbye. I'd send her off with some music..Sarah Brightman's and Andrea Bocelli's version. BIG Mistake. I started bawling, and now, every time I hear this song, I am close to losing it all over again.
    Even though there comes a time when we have to say goodbye, we should always remember the time we've had with those we love.
    thank you, Diana, for reminding me.

  8. Music is such an inspiration source. And it's lucky for pumpkin head you left your cutlass at home!!

  9. Hi Diana .. music is inspirational as Ava mentions ... I love listening to it - but I'm really unmusical ... still I can lose myself in songs, orchestral works and church music ...

    Remembrances are so important .. cheers Hilary