Sitting in the third row of Die Glocke’s Kleiner Saal, the smaller recital hall: candle sconces lining the walls, glimpses of stone arches out the window. They have a concert Steinway on stage for me, one of those beauties that’s sparkling bright up top and a bit growly in the low end, so that even running through scales sounds fancy—a dance partner who makes you forget your two left feet. But the techs couldn’t hear each other talk over my happy plunking, so I’ve been kicked offstage for a while.
St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
We wake up each morning on Cayamo to a different scene in the picture window. Sunday, endless waves dusted with whitecaps; Monday, hills dotted with palm trees; Tuesday, a loading dock and a butterfly museum. On Deck 13 you can walk around the whole ship, letting the panorama engulf you in blue and white and green. I never get over the sheer ridiculousness of it.
Jacksonville, Florida/Berlin, Germany
I’m running a fever and my throat feels funny, like sandpaper against a peeled grape. In my head I run through the schedule: three hours at the Best Western by Jacksonville Airport, a ten-hour layover in New York to do laundry and a dozen other errands, then the eight-hour flight to Europe. Negotiating with one’s immune system is regular business for the touring musician, but this time I don’t have much bargaining power.So I beg for a favor. Please oh please let my voice hold up for this show, I promise there will be sleep and NyQuil and other nice things soon, really there will, just not yet, hang in there a little bit longer. I drink buckets of herbal tea and try not to talk. At the hotel in Berlin I sleep for about sixteen hours. And my body, thank you thank you I swear I’ll pay you back for this, lets me off easy. By the time we take the stage at Quasimodo, I’m loopy as hell but well on the mend. The audience cheers, the adrenaline flows, and I know everything is going to be just fine.
That's me in the middle of the Venn Diagram. http://viennateng.com/