The people we meet

Last night I attended a concert of a wonderful pianist called Boris Berezovsky. No prizes for guessing which country he’s from and no surprises that I fell asleep! (Like father, like son!) I must admit, being in the audience is a rarity for me and I wasn’t going to pass up the offer of a comp even though I’d just flown in from London. Speaking of which, big thank you to my former student from Burnside High School, Bina, for the ticket!

I can’t tell you how much I appreciate seeing relatives, friends, schoolmates, and former colleagues and students on my travels. One thing that makes me especially proud is seeing those students now working in the music industry in a professional capacity, as performers, educators or working in arts administration. I made the decision nearly eight years ago to follow my heart and take a break from teaching to pursue a long-held dream of being a professional singer, full-time. Seeing former students now as young adults following their hearts and plying their trade with music as the primary focus is truly the most wonderful feeling!

This time last week we were in Paris having a fabulous time on-stage with ten former King’s Singers. Standing next to these absolute legends of the group was so great and hearing the response from the ecstatic audience to each of their names being announced – as if they were about to walk into the Crucible for the final of the World Snooker Championship – was terrific! (I realise that analogy may mean absolutely nothing to some of you!)

Speaking of friends around the world, two people in the audience in Paris share an interesting story with Liz and I. The four of us met under slightly stressful circumstances at Paddington Station a few years back. We arrived in time for the last train of the day to Oxford only to find that it had been cancelled for some reason. Not wanting to get the bus back home, and given they didn’t live in Oxford itself, we all decided to pitch in for a cab and share a lift to our respective homes! Turned out we had a mutual love of travel and had a great old chat! Simon and Rachel were promptly upgraded from ‘Taxi acquaintances’ to ‘Facebook friends’ and we’ve kept in touch. Paris was, however, only our second meeting in the flesh and it was absolutely brilliant to see them again. We have, like all good Facebook friends do, liked each other’s updates over the past few years from afar so I felt like I was reasonably up-to-date with their escapades around the world! That’s one of the benefits of social media. It’s an incredible way for people of all levels of friendship to stay connected. It’s perhaps, to a greater or lesser extent, redefined the meaning of friendship. It’s probably also put paid to school reunions given the ‘So what have you been up to since we left school twenty years ago?’ conversation is now less relevant or reflective of modern society than ever before.

Right, I think I’ll finish on that philosophical note!

See you soon!


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