continued from Muziek en amuses concertblog.
Upstairs in the architect’s office overlooking the canal, we changed into our respective performance clothes. I put on a green Laura Ashley dress that I had bought half a lifetime ago, and still, amazingly fitted and looked brand new. Until recently, I never had much opportunity to wear such traditional gowns with puffy sleeves. Perhaps secretly I knew one day I’d wear them on stage.
Robert looked outside and noticed many bicycles parked on the pavement. We knew the concert was sold out weeks before. We were curious if anyone from the waiting list managed to get in at the very last minute.
The volume level downstairs started to rise. We could tell the house was getting pretty full. Before long, Elsbeth, the artist who owned the house, knocked on our door to ask if we were ready. We walked into a room packed with people. A guest later told us that she counted 70 bodies.
As with all concerts that we had a hand in planning, it seemed an eternity before the final moment arrived. And as soon as we started our performance, it seemed a split of a second before it was over. The actual playing time was less than an hour. Add the verbal introductions and explanations, which Robert and I took turns (he in Dutch and I in English), the concert was over by 9:45 pm. It was time to leave Elsbeth’s house and walk to the home of Chefs Ivo and Paulien.
The two pianists I had invited to the house concert wanted to check out the August Forster piano. I stayed back to talk to them. While collecting my things upstairs, I heard one of them play a beautiful Chopin Berceuse. How lovely it was to hear such music throughout this house!
The post-concert reception of home-made gourmet finger food and fine wines was in full swing by the time I got there. After the conquering the steep stair case, I walked into a grand room that buzzed with conversation. Everyone was occupied.
Later we learned that the last guests left at 4 am. What a party it was!