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Belters and bohemians: Opera Locos @Sadlers_wells

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At the start of the Opera Locos performance, the announcement says that they really are singing. You could be forgiven for wondering that, given the amplification turns up the backing track and the voices so loud that you can't always tell what's real. But this is a mostly harmless and slightly eccentric blend of opera classics fused with the occasional pop classic. However, recognising the pop tunes would help if you were over a certain age. The most recent of them dates back twenty years. It's currently playing at the Peacock Theatre .  Five performers play out a variety of archetype opera characters. There's the worn-out tenor (Jesús Álvarez), the macho baritone (Enrique Sánchez-Ramos), the eccentric counter-tenor (Michaël Kone), the dreamy soprano (María Rey-Joly) and the wild mezzo-soprano (Mayca Teba). Since my singing days, I haven't recognised these types of performers. However, once, I recall a conductor saying he wanted no mezzo-sopranos singing with the s

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Paul's Travelling Tips Miscellany

More on my weekend later but first my observations travelling 300kph out of Paris:


  • A trip to Paris, then on to Angers need not be tiring... Just travel first class. My return leg was in a solo seat so I did not have to play footsie with anybody... The seats are bigger and the cars are quieter... And in general the cars have much better looking people in them... Although the only attractive people in my car tonight are the women...
  • You also get nicer messages on the PA system, and the crew are much more polite. Unless of course you are Grace Jones trying to get a free upgrade, or the Asian woman at Gare Du Nord who showed her ticket to the smart French gent after me and got: "YOU ARE CAR THREE THIS IS CAR TWELVE! MOVE ALONG!"
  • I am typing this while having a nice glass of champagne. There is a bottle of Bordeaux waiting after that as well...
  • The 3pm train out of Waterloo is a good one to catch if you wish to pick up a Gaelic Businessman returning to Paris. I just didn't try hard enough, but then again I only had the Perrier as an aperitif...
  • I am enjoying myself more as I type this and quaff champagne...
  • Oh and check the Price differential between 1st and 2nd class when you book... For me it was only £20 so I figured that was a bargain...

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