[You know what is missing from much of political debate at the moment? Well, debate, for one. (One side screaming fake news while the other rolls their eyes at them does not constitute a debate). – But also: Nuance. And vulnerability in a sense of openness, quiet moments, and an appreciation for the smallest detail. And the ability to listen for it, to hear it. Thankfully, none of these are absent with Iestyn Davies and Thomas Dunford in this selection of Dowland songs, recorded at Wigmore Hall in 2013. – Clip with thanks to sergio lirico]
Well. If I had entertained any hopes that there would only be a dozen or so editions of this format, this week made it clear that we may be settling of for the long 200+ haul. Never fear. We have enough music to last us more than a presidency.
Many of us will look forward at 2017 with trepidation (although after 2016, the bar for ‘better’ has been set so low that anyone trying to perform the limbo below it would break their spine), but with Dowland and Davies, it’s at least 20 minutes to write holiday notes with a fountain pen while nursing a cup of tea. Or Irish Coffee.
And there are positive narratives not to be lost this week – the San Francisco reaction to the decision of the electorate, for example. Or the very Berlin calm and defiance – despite ugly agitatorial headlines produced by the racist right and the biggest yellow press outlet of the country – in face of the attack on a Christmas market in Berlin that killed at least a dozen people. There’s a meet-up this afternoon in Munich, also involving the Bayerische Staatsoper, and there is tomorrow night’s ‘Evening against Hate and Fear’ at Schaubühne Berlin, with Igor Levit and Carolin Emcke, among others.
As I struggle to get better at speaking up and taking a stance, I am encouraged by seeing that I am not alone in this, not by far.
A good week to you all, and if it includes holidays for you: may they bring peace and happiness.