Picturesque City

Who doesn’t love Autumn? And when you have beautiful surroundings, it even makes it nicer. When I’m out for my walks, I know that in Amsterdam I’ll find a new and incredible view just around the next corner. I’m amazed at seeing something interesting and fresh to the eye each time I’m out and about even if I’ve walked down the street a hundred times. In Fall, it’s even more noticeable as a tree that was green one day is vivid yellow the next. With the incredible winds we’ve had this week, the tree that was yellow is now naked until next Spring. Buildings, boats, and bicycles reflect off the water of the Amstel River and the MANY canals provide new stimuli for visual joys. Of course, some of you are aware of the “smells” that this city can provide as well--I won’t discuss those in this post although let’s just say that one can enter into a new dimension simply by walking past certain establishments and never even go inside.

Rehearsals continue to be light and easy. As I’ve said before, I’ve performed in this production already (in 2003) and it’s providing few surprises. Our cast has all finally arrived and we’re well on our way to being fully rehearsed. The show doesn’t open until December second and so we have plenty of time to get it all together.

I have made so many friends in this business over the years. When you pop in and out of various cities and amongst so many different productions, you create new friends on each job and reacquaint with old ones as well. Tomorrow evening, an old friend will be in town to sing a concert. We haven’t seen each other in about a year and so it will be great to catch up over dinner. I cherish all these friendships on the road. I wonder what it would be like to somehow get together with all my friends on the home front and with those who I know from the road at the same time. It would be an enormous gathering and one of incredible diversity. Oh, what fun it would be.

The news from home tells of what a hectic week having four kids can be. Fortunately, one is away at college and so his activities aren’t adding to the scramble (and rising gasoline bill). Our second oldest is playing two roles (Oberon/Theseus) this weekend in his school’s production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”. Oh, how I wish I could see it. I sang the role of Bottom in the operatic version of this Shakespeare play 23 years ago at Wolf Trap. It was one of the more fun assignments I’ve ever had in this business even if I did have to be ass. My wife has helped with the costumes for the show which opens tonight and our daughter will also make a brief appearance onstage in a non-speaking role. The youngest brother will be cheering them all on. I hope lots of pictures are taken and maybe even a video for this wandering minstrel to see at some point.

“I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was.”