Alan's Blog...It's all Gesamtkunstwerk to me!

Thoughts from nearly 40 years on the professional stage

A double header in Toronto...And Easter

It’s been nearly 6 weeks since I’ve updated my blog but, rest assured, my broken foot and I are doing fine. I’m now in Toronto rehearsing the double bill of “A Florentine Tragedy” and “Gianni Schicchi” which is set to open later this month at COC (Canadian Opera Company). To say that these last few weeks have been a challenge would be an understatement.

Way back in February, I wrote about a bone breaking in my foot during a performance of “Rusalka” at Covent Garden in London. I was able, by the grace of God and with the help of my colleagues, to finish that run without missing a performance. I’m not sure if the audience realized I was performing with the injury--so much was handled just fine with me crawling and slithering through the role. However, wearing a cast on one’s foot is not the most fun way to get through an operatic performance.

I flew home in mid-March for about 10 days and saw my own doctor in Pennsylvania. I was then outfitted for an air-boot which has been SO helpful during these last 3 weeks. I can now walk around and even rehearse (something I wouldn’t have been able to do had I remained in the cast). The time at home was, of course, not long enough. I made it up to Toronto 2 weeks ago and have been actively rehearsing ever since. This is a VERY challenging assignment as I rehearse and perform two lead roles at the same time. There isn’t a lot of down time or many chances to get your wits refreshed. It is all coming together. We had a run of “Schicchi” last night which went well. “Tragedy” has plenty of more time to come together as well. Once again, I’m enjoying my colleagues and hope to get to know the city of Toronto more in the coming weeks.

This time of year is one of my favorites as we celebrate Spring and new birth. Most important, as I write this, it is Holy Saturday and we anxiously await tomorrow’s great Easter celebration. I’ve written before, in past years, how important these days are to me. Due to the rehearsal schedule, I was unable to get to Holy Thursday Mass but did attend Good Friday services yesterday at the PACKED St. Michael’s Cathedral here in Toronto. People were standing 4-5 deep in the back of the church. How I wish I was able to get to Easter Vigil Mass tonight, hear the “Exultet”, welcome the new members of our Church, and celebrate light coming back into the world. But, even though I will be in Canada and rehearsing two shows that take place in Florence, Italy, my heart and mind will be overflowing with awe, love, and praise for our Risen Lord whose triumph in Jerusalem 2,000 years ago changed history and eternity. HAPPY EASTER!!!