This was a very cultural month or perhaps I made an effort more than I have the past few months. I’ve noticed a lot more public artwork around the city and haven’t taken a single photo of it, maybe I’ll try to get some for next month’s Culture Corner. Instead you get to relieve two amazing events and my virtual rock-starness.
Above you can see my tickets for the Harvard Bookstore Margaret Atwood reading and the Boston Lyric Opera’s performance of The Magic Flute.
I have to start by saying that Harvard Bookstore always puts on great events! I know one of the guys who works on them and they really do a great job and cover a wide variety of authors, genres and tastes. I’ve known I was going to see Ms. Atwood for quite some time and I am SO glad I did! She is 100 times funnier in person than she is in her books and if you’ve read her books you KNOW she has a sense of humor.
Ms. Atwood started the event by singing one of the hymns from the God’s Gardeners! I mean how cool is that? She then read a couple of passages from the books and explained why she chose those. She chose the ones that she researched specifically about Zeb’s experience in the frigid north and Toby and Pilar’s experiences with the bees. And then she moved into a question and answer session where she highlighted how freakin’ smart she is! A lot of the questions dealt with why she chose speculative fiction and why she chose to write about things that were so believable and just outside the realm of current existence and her answers were brilliant. The same week I saw her she made an appearance on The Dinner Party Download, one of the podcasts I regularly listen to. The only disappointment I had about the event is that Ms. Atwood was only personalizing books from the Oryx and Crake trilogy. If I had known this I would’ve tried to get a copy of Oryx and Crake in addition to The Handmaid’s Tail, but I’m still glad I went.
That same week I got an email from Boston Lyric Opera with a discount code for the new English adaptation of The Magic Flute and I decided even if no one else could go I was going to go. It’s been year’s since I last went to the opera and I wanted to see this adaptation as it sounded interesting.
Overall, I was sort of uninspired by this adaptation. The idea was great, bringing it forward and setting it in South America with current day students interacting with Aztec gods, but the performance was mediocre to me. I’m not sure if this is because it was in English, I’ve heard the German before but not seen it, but it could also have been because the main stars weren’t too inspiring. I LOVED Papageno, Andrew Garland, and Monostatos, Neal Ferreira, and the three ladies were great, but the leads left me wanting.
I will say that the set was FANTASTIC. It was definitely a bit over the top, but the movement of the set to create the labyrinth and to create the depth of the stage was amazing. I can imagine sitting in much lower seats than mine it would’ve been even better.
And then to top off this cultural month there is this:
It basically just confirms that I’m an NPR rockstar right?!? I tweeted Ophira Eisenberg saying how much I loved her on Ask Me Another and how excited I was she appeared on The Moth (both of which I wrote about back in August). And she responded to my tweet and then retweeted it! And then a bunch of the hosts started following me and I was in nerd-heaven! But the win of that really fast hour or so when this was happening was getting the above email I mean seriously!?!? The official NPR Ask Me Another twitter account favorited my tweet. That was a great pick-me up this week!