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January 9, 2021:

A MESS OF MASSENET

Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I am sitting her like so much fish, continuing my mess of Massenet, listening to his opera entitled La Navarraise, on Sony, starring Lucia Popp. a singer I like more each time I hear her. It was the opera’s first complete recording, which is more than a little odd given the popularity of its composer and the fact that it runs a very brief forty minutes. It’s very enjoyable, and the orchestral bits are really wonderful. It’s no masterpiece and has no “hits” but does have some lovely tunes, but the performances are wonderful, it’s the LSO and I enjoyed it and am now looking forward to Manon and Cendrillon from this composer. I also finished the four-CD set of Mackerras doing Janacek and Martinu (one out of the four discs). The three Janacek discs are filled with incredible music, most of it orchestral. But the major new piece for me was one I was really looking forward to and it certainly did not disappoint – his Glagolitic Mass, a wonderful work. The Martinu disc had one really great piece, and the other pieces ranged from excellent to one I had to nuke because I found it so irritating. And next up is a Humperdinck chamber music CD, which I’m really looking forward to. I’ve been having some allergy issues the last few days, at least they feel like allergy issues. It hasn’t been bad enough to take a Claritin-D but I finally just did a couple of hours ago, so the nose has dried up a bit and that’s good.

Yesterday was a short day due to getting nine hours of sleep and arising at one-twenty because I had a little burst of inspiration and wrote several pages after I’d taken my late-night shower last night, not getting to sleep until after four. I also think that not getting enough sleep has been taking its toll on me a bit. Once up, I answered e-mails, there were thankfully a few more orders and hopefully more will continue to trickle in over the next few days because we really need them to.

After that stuff, I moseyed on over to the mail place and picked up three packages, even though there were four, so I’ll get that one today, hopefully with some others. Once back home, I ordered California Chicken Café, this time a half all-white chicken (two breasts, two wings) and my chicken pasta salad. While waiting for its arrival, I futzed and finessed the sixteen pages I’d written and I continued doing that once the food had arrived. With this jernt it’s an interesting conundrum – one breast and wing just isn’t quite enough, and two breasts and two wings is just a bit too much. But it was very good. They did forget the pita bread this time, so I saved those calories, and the chicken, of course, is very calorie friendly.

Then I finished the futzing and finessing. I knew I’d done a really good sequence just before bed and re-reading it I was quite right. I was very happy with it, and all I did was extend it just a bit and flesh out its beginning. Then I wrote four new pages, then took a little break. I did nod off for about forty minutes on the couch, as I was watching one of the Hansel Und Gretel DVDs because I couldn’t remember if I’d watched (I had but shut it off because I hated the filming of it and conception). I closed my eyes, just to hear some of the music, and the next thing I knew it was forty minutes later.

I ate the chicken pasta salad, which is always very good, then wrote more new pages, about eleven of them, which took most of the evening. I still have four to do, which I’ll probably do after I post these here notes, which are now officially one-minute late. I then did a gas in the motor car trip to the local Shell, then came right back home and the rest you know.

Today, I’ll be up when I’m up, I’ll do whatever needs doing, I’ll futz and finesse, I’ll hopefully pick up some packages, I’ll eat, but mostly I’ll write all the livelong day and night and try to do the usual fifteen pages, whilst taking music breaks and maybe even a movie break.

Tomorrow will be exactly the same and so will Monday. Then on Tuesday, we begin filming project one. We’ll be doing four or five dialogue sequences a day and if all goes well, we could wrap those in two days. Only two of the dialogue sequences are more than two or three pages, so they should go relatively quickly. I’ll be able to watch as they film and can give any little notes should we need a second take or any pick-ups for lines. Hartley has already begun shooting her songs, so those will be done. Eric has to shoot all his songs in three days, but he can do that before or after we do our dialogue stuff. The plan is that I’ll have all the footage in hand and to our wonderful editor, Marshall Harvey, by next Friday. We’ll set the exact date for its premiere very soon.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up when I’m up, do whatever needs doing, futz and finesse, hopefully pick up packages, eat, write new pages, take music breaks, write new pages, perhaps take a movie break, and write new pages. Today’s topic of discussion: When you were growing up, what was your favorite penny candy – you know, the kind you’d get from vending machines or the candy store – not necessarily an actual penny, but for a nickel or dime. Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, continuing my mess of Massenet education.

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