I am now on the last leg of what has been a very successful tour, The Legacy Tour.
Many people are wondering why it has been named as such. When we were planning the tour we decided we had to come up with something different and hit upon the idea of “Legacy”, meaning something handed down. In my case, it means music handed down to me from the composers I have had the honor to represent during my lifetime playing the flute. This is why we have a Quartet by Mozart, a duet by the famous Doppler brothers, and several Irish selections.
The tour so far has been very well received, and I must say it has been a pleasure to play to so many full houses on the way round. It has also been very tiring, and from this I learned a very important lesson.
My schedule before the tour was very taxing; a concerto evening, a masterclass, and a chamber concert, all in Russia with Yuri Bashmet and the Moscow soloists. On February 23, the day after it all finished, I flew from Sochi to Zürich, which took all day. I spent the night at home, and after changing my suitcase and picking up several more, I set off with Jeanne to fly to New York.
We arrived Sunday Feb. 24th, and settled in to the place we typically stay when in New York. The following day we went to the Met to see Verdi’s Don Carlo. This was conducted by Lorin Maazel. The cast and orchestra were amazing. Sadly, we had to leave early as our jet lag was kicking in full force. The next day we had lunch with the Maazels. We discussed my visit to the Castleton Festival, which Lorin runs so well.
I spent some time that afternoon setting up a new phone to use while in the USA. I bought an AT&T package for under $30. The reason for this was my iPhone 5 is only good in Switzerland. I spend quite a bit of time getting things like this organized. It is amazing how in my lifetime communications have changed. I am still just getting used to it all. I do know several people who do not use computers and manage to have a successful life..The one thing I miss with my cheap little phone is the speech to text app. This is very handy and it even understands my Belfast brogue.
Much of my free time in New York was taken up with newspaper and radio interviews to publicize the upcoming tour. On the evening of the 26th we headed south to New York University where we were to take part in honoring Loretta Gluxmann-Brennan. Loretta was being honored for all the work she had done with the American Ireland Fund over the past 20 years. It was a wonderful evening with many very well known Irish Americans paying tribute. Most notably among them all was the Irish Nobel prize winner Seamus Heaney.
We came out at the end to find that the car we had booked to return home had left without us, and we were stranded in the pouring rain. However a fellow Belfasman named Sean and his wife Mary Kelly dropped us off as they were passing our house on the way home.
The following day, Wednesday the 27th, we began rehearsals for the tour and I will write more about that when I get a moment.