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Prima Donna

I went to Manchester to see Rufus Wainwright’s opera Prima Donna – I think it was 3 weeks ago? 12th of July, anyway. It was very good, although I was probably not in an ideal state to appreciate it, having had about two hours’ sleep after a big night out at Milk and Honey (their cocktails are tiny and expensive, about £3 a sip, but lethal all the same) followed by an after party at our flat that involved an improvised karaoke session using the laptop and Spottify.

My journey was fairly dramatic which I suppose is appropriate for opera. I had booked a cheap train at 10.20, which I missed by two minutes. So I bought a new return ticket, for £67. Altogether, my trip to Manchester, including both tickets and taxi to and from Euston station (to because I was running late and the Overground wasn’t working, and from because I was so exhausted) cost me about £100. I now hear that the opera is coming to London. Of course it is. Anyway, it was good – much more Operatic with a capital O than I had expected. I didn’t quite come out humming any tunes though it was definitely more melodic than the last modern opera I saw (For You by Michael Berkeley) which sounded more like what I expect from contemporary classical music, ie ‘Symphony for Vacuum Cleaner’. And it was fun to see the premiere run, and see him come out at the end in a particularly crazy outfit. Apparently he dressed up as Verdi for the premiere, which I don’t think was probably the best idea. But the more I think about it, the more I really hope that he sticks to his own special poperatic music as I love it so much.

I was talking to my mother about RW and his song Quand Vous Mourrez de Nos Amours, which is a cover of an old song by the quebecois Gilles Vigneault. Mum knew the song (no surprise, as she knows all songs) and remembers being in Montreal in the early 1970s and hearing GV perform the song in a bar. She loved the song so much that she got the words from somewhere and wrote them out. And over 30 years later, I heard Rufus’s version and loved it so much I googled the words. Rufus of course lived in Montreal when he was young, and he probably heard the song from his mother Kate McGarrigle. It is that kind of song. The link below doesn’t really do it justice – better spottify it instead.

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