domingo, 7 de enero de 2007

Back from Jakarta, going to Brussels

God, it doesn't stop ! Anyway, just came back home yesterday. What really struck me was that incredible Business, no sorry, Raffles Class of Singapore Airlines. My God the seats are so wide 'n big 'n cosy. They are just like sofas, with a big table. That's quite new, right ? As SQ is the richest airline in the world, it can afford refurbishing its business class with just 4 seats in a row (one seat every window, and two seats in the middle), and with those facilities, I won't be surprised if a composer could write a WHOLE symphony during the flight. Well no, since he has at least 40 movies to choose from and some sitcoms as well. Anyway I managed to sketch my new song on Goenawan Mohamad's poem for baritone and piano, AND read some short stories (very nice ones, by the way) by another favorite writer of mine Radhar Panca Dahana AND watched Woody Allen's new movie "Scoop" (the latter is rather disappointing, unfortunately) . Somehow those SQ people could make the passenger feel private and undisturbed, perhaps also because of the construction of the seat which is quite closed and self-contained. I still wonder what one can achieve with HIS own private jet ! Oh, and it has internet connections for every passenger, but unfortunately I didn't bring my laptop. My flight was Jakarta - Barcelona (obviously via Singapore), and when I stepped in the Barcelona El Prat airport it was like, well, welcome to the real, uncomfortable, unglamorous, spartan world of Europe. No business lounges, no free internet or calls (well there are a few, A FEW, hot-spots in the airport, but usually they are inside the restaurants).
Am leaving to Brussels on the 9th to play at the concerts in the opera houses in Antwerp and Ghent the following days, with music by Ravel, Haydn , Rueda, Stravinsky and Lanchares (what else ? They are too close to my heart !) . Santiago Lanchares will be travelling with his wife and will arrive midday on the 10th, and they will stay after the concerts for a break after finishing his new orchestral work commissioned to be played in the inauguration (by HM Queen Sofia) of the new concert hall in Valladolid next February. Just talked to him today by phone, he said it is a 7-minute orchestral work which contains the loudest and most exuberant moments of his career , so am certainly looking forward to hearing it. I just consider him one of the greatest composers of today.
Oh, I should have talked about my stay in Indonesia. It was hectic, but nice. I am glad that the recording with the soprano Binu Sukaman went very well. Also, Farman Purnama sang beautifully my two songs with me at the concerts. Bought some books, including Ayu Utami's "Saman" which was a bestseller like 5 years ago but I only got it now. Very inspiring. I immediately called her and we had a nice afternoon at her place with her boyfriend.
All right, back to work ! Have to re-practice Lanchares' Anandamania, among others. Those concerts in Brussels could be my 70th or even more performance of that great klavierstück.