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June 2019
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Irish Christmas Tour

reviewed by Ali

Three concerts in Ireland. A bit late as I came back home on the 24th . Really love `to do' the Irish Christmas tour. The (little bit of) snow, especially in Limerick, was lovely to see.

My hotel was in Fisamble Street. In this street was a Music Centre once. In 1742 the premiere of Händel's Messiah took place here. If I remember well Matthew mentioned it in an interview.

Had a walk in the rain/hail(without coffee stop!). Didn't plan to go to St. Stephen's Green or Grafton Street, but ended there anyway.
On my way back to the hotel I passed St. Patrick's and what a surprise&I met Brian! He joined the CT on this tour. Great to see him again.

Before the concert I met Heike and Axel in front of St. Patrick's. Lovely to see them again. We had fun while waiting.
I picked up my ticket and we were seated second row.

The concert was great. A Christmas concert in a church with a choir is so appropriate. And the choir was good and sometimes adorable.
One of the ladies in front of us thought that she recognized me from the Heart Hospital. In the interval we had a `nice' chat. The lady loved the CT. She was touched by `Remember me'. One of her daughters died about 13 years ago. She and her husband raise the two children she left behind. They are in boarding school now so they had the opportunity to attend this concert. Some other grandchildren live in the USA. We all understood that she was touched by this song.

One of the `new' songs was `Mille cherubini in coro'. Love it.
Marvellous to hear `Gaudete' again. So glad that it was in the programme.
Fortunately they sang `Dimming of the day'. Think I'll never get tired of hearing this song.

The choir did the Nessun Dorma chorus. Much better than any audience ever did. They sang the words an no one stole the tenors line! Funny that Matthew is so used to encourage the audience that he did the movements though we weren't the choir.

James introduced me to Maeve. She is really a special lady. It is an absolute extra that on account of the CT I met people like Ute, Christel, Heike & Axel and now Maeve.

Matthew always mentions the fact that some of us travelled so far to attend a concert.

Cork Opera House
Received messages about the weather in The Netherlands. Over 20 cm snow and still snowing. In Cork it was slippery by frost.

On the poster at The Opera house the choir wasn't mentioned!
The venue changed a bit. Chairs were placed differently and there's an orchestra pit now. As there is a bar I don't understand why everyone is taking food and drinks inside.
It was cold in The Opera House. Afterwards James told that there were problems with the heater and that is was off the whole day. I don't like to wear a coat in theatre, but wrapped my shawl around me.

As I was told that the song list would be the same it was a pleasant surprise to hear `The contender'. Didn't hear it live before.
And again a great choir.

In `White Christmas' Daryl was pointing to the North. `And I am longing to be up North'. Actually he pointed to the wrong direction.

This morning at the hotel a man warned me for Limerick. Criminal city? Didn't notice!

On Limerick Junction I made some photo's. A little bit of snow and sun!
Had the same hotel as we had last year. Lovely to see it in the snow.
Last year we walked to The Concert Hall. As it was slippery I had a taxi this time. After the concert Margareth and Maeve (hope this is her name) drove me back to the hotel.

In my opinion this stage was excellent for this show. Maybe I'm not impartial as I love this venue anyway.
Concert was great again. No song changes this time.

James dedicated a song to Trishia (I think her name was). Matthew tried to insert his aunt and uncle into the dedication. Then Daryl & James didn't agree. Of course the others were mentioned after the song.

Before the concert I met a lovely couple. The name of the lady was Ann(y). During the interval I went to them and they told me how much they enjoyed the show.
In "Time to say goodbye' James and Matthew went into the audience to sing a line to someone. Matthew choose Anny. Afterwards she told me how special that was for her. It was exactly that line that her brother sang for her last year. He passed away that Christmas. Very touching.

On beforehand I loved the idea of an extra day in Limerick but it was foggy and slippery.
I went (partly slide) to St. John's Castle. The story was told in a film in which an actress told what happened. It was impressive. In an odd way I always feel guilty on account of the Dutch influence to the Irish problems.

Went to the airport early. Cork Airport is pretty quiet at night. At 20.35 I found out that it was snowing!!! But&came back home without any delay!

All the best for the new year to everyone.