It is a long time since I was in Cambridge so it was a treat to be back there, feeling much the same as far as the city centre is concerned but apparently greatly developed outside the centre core.
I got there in time to go to Evensong at the famous and ravishingly beautiful King's College Chapel. The choral scholars though not the boys were there - and we had Palestrina, Lassus, Tallis and Victoria. That was a lovely late afternoon 45 minutes.
After a quick supper I went around the corner to the Arts Theatre for the performance by English Touring Opera of Cavalli's Giasone - in English so called Jason. I rather object to translating an opera's name. But the marketing folks at COT did the same (and we did the piece in Italian) so I am not in a position to object when another company does it!
ETO did a complete edit of the piece and to me it was pretty well unrecognisable. Characters were removed and switched around, and massive musical cuts resulted in it coming in at 2 hours and 5 minutes. We were pressed to bring it in under three hours when we did it in Chicago, in the new Ellen Rosand edition somewhat modified by Christian Curnyn and Justin Way. So there was a lot missing. I have no idea what happened to Alinda - played in Chicago by the delightful Gretel on the current Glyndebourne tour, Andriana Chuchman.
The absence of undergraduates at the performance rather surprised me. I discussed this with the taxi driver (in Cambridge as in London taxi drivers are the fount of all wisdom) and he explained that they spend all their time in the pubs and generally partying. That seems like a waste of an expensive education. Or maybe they knew in advance that the Giasone had been severely cut.......
Speaking of education - I was surprised to receive an electronic flyer from one of our most important opera companies yesterday informing me about "the earliest of the musical prodigal's operas". Well this was about Mozart. Those same marketing people again - don't know the difference between Prodigy and Prodigal!
So it seems that I am having a grumpy morning! But the sun is shining so things will look up.