Well, from cycling 43miles last week to something very different this week......which is all part of the adventure!
This weeks suggested colour and number combination was 'Pink, 2'. The magic card out of the box was 'Wigmore Lates' Something which may surprise people who know me is that in my 11 years in London I have never been to this musical gem of a venue that is Wigmore Hall. It dates back to 1901 when it was built by Bechstein, the German piano company, next to their piano showroom in Marylebone. Although I credit myself with having quite diverse music taste (well, I mean, flamenco!?) I rarely go to classical events. But a deal is a deal, so I would go and see whatever was on for their ‘Friday Late’ last week. ‘Friday Lates’ are a great series of musical recitals from 10 – 11pm every Friday night – who knew? Last week turned out to be 'Arcangelo',some of the worlds finest musicians who play both historical and modern instruments. Hmmm..what would that be like??
Now the slight challenge with this little venture of mine is that there is an element to it which causes anxiety to the eternal planner in me. If I pick something which is dependent on booking a ticket, will there be GOOD tickets left? Now, here's the added bonus I have found to undertaking these challenges solo....there are some great single seats available at concerts, in this case bang in the centre of the first row, £15!
As the evening didn't begin until 10pm, I thought I would make the most of the night and really embrace 'treating London like a tourist'. I booked myself a 'table for one' at the Portman Corner Restaurant at the Radisson Hotel in Marylebone. Although not the focus of the night, more an added bonus, I really enjoyed my solo dining experience. What's more, my lemon sole, salted caramel cheesecake, coffee and 2 glasses of wine came in at just over £30 courtesy of my Taste Card...Result! Also, the really liberating part of dining in your own is the fact that you can eat at your own pace, not having to consider anyone else's tastes...and listen in on other people's conversations...
Dinner over, I headed to the wonderful Wigmore Hall for the concert start time of 10pm. Well, I can honestly say I was enthralled from start to finish. Nine German Arias was performed by musicians on harpsichord, viola, flute, violin, lute, and soprano voice. In my prime seat at the front row I felt totally immersed - 75 minutes of musical joy, which I was sad to see come to an end. Ah, but the Wigmore Hall have that covered, and at 11.15pm we were invited downstairs to the bar where a jazz quartet were ready to accompany our post concert drinks. The musicians joined for drinks where I had such an interesting chat with the lute player. It was considered very bad form to take photographs of the performers in the main hall so here are some pics of the wonderful ceiling frieze and the post event jazz band. Now I'm off to prepare for this weekend's task which is a real classic...all I can say is I'm taking advantage of the long summer solstice....It promises to be a great one!
Denise Yeats is an events director, communications consultant, endurance athlete and avid adventurer.