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This week’s photo challenge from Frank (Dutch Goes The Photo) is MUSIC.

For this week’s challenge I have plunged way back into the archives, pre-me for one of them, and I think Frank will approve as it was taken in Italy. It’s a photo of my father, another Frank –  Frank Paterson, outside La Scala, Milan in 1952. He was a complete opera fan. And although I haven’t inherited his see-every-performance obsession, I do like a good bit of opera now and again, which leads me onto a short story.

Frank Paterson, La Scala, Milan, 1952

Inspired by this photo, Don (hubbie) and I, whilst holidaying in Milan back in 1995, decided to take in a performance and as luck would have it, one of my faves, La Traviata was being performed. The only tickets left on the day were for standing in the Gods, and in order to secure two of these, we had to go through a right old palaver. After registering at the crack of dawn, we then had to return TWICE more during the day to confirm that we still wanted the tickets! Our fourth and final visit in the evening found us queuing for the actual performance. You’d think that would be the end of the tale, but no!
Having found a suitable point to stand, we waited, and waited, and waited some more for the performance to start. About half the orchestra strayed into their seats, strings were tuned, and strains of the opera score echoed as they warmed up ……… but then a man came on stage, spoke in Italian and the audience were noticeably distressed. A kind lady near us translated. The orchestra were on strike and there would be no performance that evening. You can imagine how we felt after spending the day to-ng and fro-ing!! Just minutes later, another announcement was made. Riccardo Muti, the conductor, had saved the day. He would accompany the main singers on the piano. The audience were in heaven and chanted “Maestro Muti”. An incredibly moving experience and one to be cherished forever more.

My second photo is of The Coliseum London earlier this year, as we waited for Rigoletto to begin. And this DID go ahead, with full orchestra and cast – ha ha 🙂


And finally, a photo of Izthak Perlman, my all-time favourite violinist, who was playing his 70th birthday concert last year in London. (It seemed but five minutes since we went to his 50th birthday celebration concert !!)


For me, music lifts my soul.

And you’d think we lived at the concert hall / opera house, but these are just a few of our rare visits. I’m usually an armchair listener or dancing round the room sort of music lover !! 🙂