Monday, May 5, 2008

Sarasota Day 3 - All Work and Some Play

Well, as challenging as it can be to have a career as a composer, there are definately perks from time to time. I must say, I have been treated wonderfully everytime I've been here and yesterday was a thrill. I discovered the father of one of the children in the opera was a research biologist and was willing to fly my up the coast to Crystal River to swim with manatees. Anyone that knows me well, knows how much of an animal freak I am, so I was jumping up and down with excitement. He flew me in a small four-seat Cesna (first time in a small plane...slightly scary but thrilling)and I was able to swim alongside (and pat and scratch..they like that) a mother and calf. Increrdiably how tame and mellow these animals are. Amazing.

After that, we fly back to his place (literally, he lives in an "Aviation Community" and we taxied right off the runaway amnd down the road to his house. I was laughing.

He lives at the edge of Myacca State Park so the adventure continued. We drove in to the park for a walk and I came across this very smiley fellow. A 7-foot alligator sitting around 5 feet from where I was. Startled me at first (and couldn't stop laughing..again, anyone who knows me, knows I laugh alot...)He was rather menacing, but let me get close enough for this shot.

We ended the day with a sunset from a 70-foot observation tower. This is Buddy and his wife Maureen and daughter Katherine...who is an elf dancer in The Hobbit.

Today at 6 is what is called and "Italiana" the Germans call it a Sitsprobe. Basically it is a rehearsal of the whole opera with the orchestra and singers but just in a reheasal hall with no sets, costumes or actions. It will be the first chance to hear how the whole thing sounds.


- Chris+ said...

Leave it to you to laugh at an alligator that close by! Hope the rest of your trip is great, too. Congrats, too, on 300 "Grimm" performances!

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