Just back from Malvern, where the Handelfest was a real success. More than 160 people attended each of the 5 operas, and most of the extra events sold out. Apart from the excellent attendance at each of the operas – and Flavio, Teseo and Tolomeo are hardly household names – there was a terrific buzz in the town, and at the theatre particularly. I feel like I made some new friends. There was an impressive good will with the audience (more particularly a disponibility – can we use that word for the good will of an audience), a really serious attentiveness, and so many frank confessions of pleasure in the performances! Makes it feel worthwhile.
There are still dramas, and a fair bit of day to day tension manages to eliminate any chance of complacency. I keep thinking – how can you be bothering me with that – can’t you see something special is happening? Anyway, something special is happening – people are feeling something at some of these shows.
Off to meet some people who look to be very interesting high achievers this evening – yikes. It’s like William Hutt says about acting: since the most important thing for a performer to find the truth, it is best to find that out quickly, so you can learn how to fake it thereafter.