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Thursday, June 26, 2008

Chickenpox and Crouch End

I've spent the last two weeks with the dreaded chickenpox, not a pleasant thing to have as an adult - believe me, I've had spots in places you wouldn't have dreamed possible. Crouch End Festival Chorus continues to move from strength to strength. In the last few weeks we've recorded the soundtrack for Prince Caspian (out today!), Doctor Who (the last two episodes of the current season which go out on the next two Saturdays) and done gigs with Ray Davies of the Kinks at Hampton Court Palace (although I had to miss those due to the pox).

It will be so nice to get back with all of my friends tomorrow - I am so looking forward to it.

Monday, March 10, 2008

The First Emperor

Today Rosemary and I visited The First Emperor exhibition at the British Museum, which I can safely say was a stunning experience. The exhibition isn't large, fitting into a gallery space slung across the width of the Reading Room in the centre of the Museum's Great Court, but we still spent almost three hours there, and hardly noticed the passage of time. The curators have made a fantastic job of telling the story of Qin Shihuangdi, the man who first unified the provinces of China into a single empire and who was responsible for the Terracotta Army of 7,000 life-sized figures that guard the eastern approaches to his tomb in Xi'an province. As well as a dozen or so of the statues themselves, the exhibition also includes some amazing artifacts recovered from the site, the craftsmanship of which is incredible given their age.

I didn't manage to get to the Tutankhamen Exhibition at the museum in the 1970s, but Rosemary did, and she thought that this was the equal of it in terms of its grandeur and importance. It's well worth a visit (even essential), although all advance tickets are now sold. You can still get in on the day if you queue early in the mornings, and the exhibition runs until 6th April.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

The week ahead

At last I've managed to set aside some quality time and make some inroads into my Crouch End Festival Chorus backlog - I'm well-placed now for the rest of the week, including Tuesday's committee meeting.

It's a good job I've managed to get ahead of myself as this week is going to be busy. Tomorrow we're off to the China exhibition at the British Museum, a much-anticipated event that I booked tickets for way back in November (as we wanted an early start and this was the first date we could get 10am tickets for). Then tomorrow evening we're rehearsing for a recording session which will happen on Thursday evening. Wednesday takes me to Hertfordshire Chorus's rehearsal, and I still have to fit in completing the first essay for my Open University A200 history course, although this one is only 1,000 words long!

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Back at work

Those of you who know me well will know that I've had an extended spell of absence from work. Well, at the beginning of February I made the big step and started back part time. I'm working three half days a week at them moment, in very nice BT office at Leavesden Park, just outside Watford. Early days at the moment, but so far things are working out well. So many of my friends and relatives have been supportive over the last few years, and in the unlikely event that any of you are reading this I'd like to pass on my heartfelt thanks.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Incentives

New versions of Live Writer and Live Messenger installed and up and running as of today. Will this encourage me to blog more, I wonder? Only if I can improve my delegation skills, I fear...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Saeta is complete

The last time I posted here was way back in September, which is a bit extreme for someone who is supposed to be blogging daily. It's rather surprising, then, that this post follows on from the last one!

I completed the vocal score for Saeta on Sunday and delivered it for printing yesterday morning, and it should be ready for the first rehearsal tomorrow night. I only hope it does not contain many errors. I'll be going along to the rehearsal (which Howard Haigh will also be at), so hopefully I'll be able to spot any corrections that are required. The concert is on 29th April in the Barbican Hall.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Saeta, and our house

Today I got a large chunk of work done on my project setting Saeta for Howard Haigh. Hertfordshire Chorus are performing it next April, so I need to complete the vocal score by the end of the year to give them time to print it for the first choral rehearsal. I've now almost completed first drafts of three of the five movements, but there is still a lot of work to do on layout and proofing.

We're also trying to finish off some long-running projects on our house. Next week we're having an oak floor fitted in our dining room and also getting some dining furniture delivered that those nice people at Multiyork have been looking after for us for most of the summer. The shower in our loft conversion is on its last legs, so we're simultaneously trying to get the shower room gutted and refitted before the end of November.

I've also got a cellar-full of spring bulbs to plant which I don't intend to leave this year. Maybe next week... ho hum.