The year’s schedule usually involves playing keyboard/piano and musical direction for a number of shows, and it looked as if 2020 would be no exception. Then, as we all know, a certain vicious virus changed everything. Key workers, carers, families, victims of the virus waged a traumatic and relentless daily battle. Businesses struggled and, in some cases, failed to survive. Arts venues and livelihoods faced a deeply uncertain future. Those who work in the arts know that they are not just about having a bit of fun (vital though that is). Music, dance, theatre, literature—these are all ways of expressing our humanity, learning to work together, enhancing physical and mental well-being, understanding life. And the amateur and professional arts worlds are meshed together: they cannot survive without each other. Those in the industry never stopped their creativity and optimism. New initiatives evolved, and I was lucky enough to contribute to many and various digital projects including online workshops and videos introducing school students to opera and operetta.
It was a very special moment when we returned to live theatre—first out of doors, then the indoor stage. I’m currently involved in MDing and accompanying touring opera shows and playing for recitals and musical theatre shows, as well as leading workshops in person again.
Science and art together make life liveable. It’s a huge relief to get back into rehearsal rooms, theatre spaces—and even the howling gales and downpours of the outdoor performance.
Altogether, now—ready, AND …!