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<<  -- 2 --  Bill Newman    CELEBRATORY PARADE


The Press and Publicity offices were helpful, although warning of extensive press coverage which could make such tickets scarce. Luckily I was one of the early birds, so I was successful with an opera ticket for the first night.

Teatro Nuovo. Photo: Bill Newman

The Teatro Nuovo was close to where we were staying, and local Carabineri were in full-uniformed attendance on foot and horseback outside the theatre. The front facade partly resembles London's Colosseum, although the theatre's seating capacity is smaller. I sat in the highest row directly facing the stage.

Menotti's 90th birthday on 8 July 2001 included a celebratory gala event. There were many people from around the Arts world, and it was evident the respect and the love towards him was very warm. He seemed to have a renewed lease of life, After the endless applause he briskly waved it away with a twinkle in his eye and a sudden jolting of his walking stick. I knew from all this that my plea for an interview this time would be unheeded.

Rocca Fortress (back) and viaduct with footpath. Photo: Bill Newman

Apart from music, I needed to challenge myself by exploring the terrain all around, so I crossed the famous viaduct bridge and then walked along various footpaths upwards to woodland stretches with cicadas screaming overhead. Edmund said, 'Don't let me stop you, but it looks like it might rain'. I tore off like a demented gazelle. A few drops did fall as I rounded the end elevation of La Rocca, but that was all. I decided on the route signposted 'Forcelina Castelano 950m'.

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Copyright © 6 November 2001 Bill Newman, Edgware, UK






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