From the Royal Chorus in Japan - Day 13
While we have been working on the Messiah over the last few days, the crew has been busy getting La traviata out of Yokohama and into the NHK Hall in Tokyo. A short train ride and a walk through the frenetic neo-light district of Shibuya brought us to the NHK Broadcasting Centre and their modern 3500 seat theatre. What a great venue! It should be particularly good for the Messiah performance on Saturday. Incidently, it has been pleasantly cooler, and after pouring with rain this morning has remained wet all day. A somewhat soggy team congregated for the for the pre-show balance rehearsal. We were delighted to see Ermonella Jaho back with us and seemingly over her health problems. She certainly sang and performed very well. The performance was received extremely well by another capacity audience. Some of us were fortunate enough to attend a post-show reception with the principals and representatives of the promoters and sponsors. It would appear they are very eager to have us back, and Elaine Padmore announced the intention to plan a return visit for the company in five years’ time. According to the local custom, the party came to an abrupt end on the dot of 11pm. Our hosts are wonderfully hospitable people and we were treated to wonderful food and drink, and there was an opportunity for the sponsors to meet Antonio Pappano and our principal singers and be photographed with them.
- John Bernays.