10 November, 2019
Here’s Kate, getting our US tour blog underway with news of our time in Columbus, OH!
“The morning of Day One of our mini-tour dawned bright and fair. And cold. With temperatures hovering around freezing, we were glad that the more organised members of the group had checked the forecast before leaving the UK and reminded us all to pack the thermals…
“The day got off to an early start for half the group, with six singers heading to Central Crossing High School for a short workshop. We very much enjoyed introducing the group of thirty or so teenagers to some of our favourite repertoire and talking to them about the joys and challenges of life on the road as a performing musician. We were thrilled to see a number of the High School pupils in the audience later that day.
“Those of us not on workshop duty headed early into downtown Columbus to explore. After a short wander by the river we made for North Market – a wonderful food market packed with stalls selling every imaginable foodstuff. We were delighted to find the route lined with high school marching bands, warming up for a Veterans Day parade. The vintage cars and fire engines on display contributed to the festival atmosphere, though we were rather less convinced by the tank being driven down the street.
“After a tip-off from a stall holder at North Market we made for the Wolf’s Ridge Brewing Company for lunch. We wandered through the micro-brewery, past rows of steel tanks, until we came to the restaurant at the back. Lunch was a hearty feast of beef, veggie and chicken burgers, complemented by tantalising samples from their impressive ale selection.
“But playtime was soon over, and we headed for the rehearsal. It has been a little while since our last concert, and it was a real joy to be back, performing our Queen Elizabeth I programme Queen of Muses perhaps for the last time. The last time for that programme perhaps, but in a particular way the concert was a first for us. Our 446th concert as a group, and the very first not featuring Eleanor Harries. She is currently a few weeks away from giving birth, so did not join us on this trip. An excellent reason to be absent, but we missed her wonderful energy on stage, and the cocktail count for this tour so far is noticeably low.
“The Columbus audience was enthusiastic and attentive, with some interesting and insightful questions as part of our pre-concert talk. We sold plenty of CDs, including many of our new Christmas disc, released that day in the US. Fingers crossed it will be nestling snug in many State-side Christmas stockings come December 25th.
“All in all, a great start to the trip. And now for Vermont…..”