Last Wednesday I had the IMMENSE pleasure – well, perhaps great honor would be more like it, but it was such a pleasure as well – to be the surprise guest in a tribute to Frederica von Stade, sponsored by the tireless San Francisco Opera Guild. I’m still waiting for pictures to arrive from that event, so I’ll write more about it when they arrive – but in the meantime, this one just arrived in my mailbox:

Yes, it’s my date, the dashing Jake Heggie, who took a break from his intensive work on his NEW OPERA (what an undertaking!) to pay homage to his dear friend. It’s good timing, because a quote just arrived in the same in-box, and I thought it was fortuitous timing, for it certainly embodies Jake’s spirit as well as my sought-after philosophy. It’s from Annie Lamott’s novel, “Travelling Mercies”, and I thank Cage for the food for thought.


“Music is about as physical as it gets: your essential rhythm is your heartbeat; your essential sound, the breath. We are walking temples of noise.”

Photo: © Drew Altizer (not for reprint)