Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Westminster comes calling, the Abbey that is!

It was my great pleasure to take Christopher Herrick, organist from Westminster Abbey through the Auckland Town Hall Organ on Monday.

Christopher is here giving some lectures and recitals the most public of which will be in the Christchurch Town Hall. Christopher was VERY impressed with the splendid work Klais have achieved and particularly impressed with the supreme efforts they have gone to to ensure the ‘English’ sound. He has given his own ‘feedback’ on this.

Christoper Herrick

Back in 2004 Christopher gave a very fine recital on the Town Hall Organ before it was dismantled. At a subsequent Council and Organists meeting he declared that what happened to the organ in 1970 was a great tragedy and wished the Council and the Trust the very best of luck with the refurbishment project. We will soon be on the final run and the great desire of so many enthusiasts will be realised. Keep 4.30pm 21st March 2010 firmly in mind.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Top 10

The other day, my radio told me that a very reliable source has named Simon O’Neill as being one of the top 10 tenors in the world and particularly in the world of the Wagnerian tenore.

Congratulations and salutations from all your friends here. It really only seems like yesterday at the NZ Opera School in 1994/5 that Madame Virginia Zeani confirmed to a nearly full Prince Edward Auditorium at the Wanganui Collegiate School that Simon was indeed a tenor and not a baritone. Over the following years, Simon followed his dream, worked very hard, kept the vision before him and is now well on his way. In 2012, 13 & 14 he will be performing in the opera
Otello in none other than La Scala Opera House in Milan.


We're on the move

The Wellington office of The NBR New Zealand Opera is moving to new
premises — from Wednesday, 15 July 2009 please visit us at:

The NBR New Zealand Opera
Freemasons House
195-201 Willis Street
Wellington 6011


Friday, July 3, 2009

Hey ho for the ‘classics’ – cars that is!


In the latest Daimler Spare Parts Car Club magazine (arguably the largest car club in the Southern Hemisphere), the President urges the restoration of these beautiful English classics as a means of helping the environment, rather than simply scrapping them for something new and, perhaps, seemingly more glamorous – although I have yet to see a new car that matches the beauty of say a Mark 2 Daimler or Jag or maybe a Rover 3500 P5B or an XJ6. They always ‘turn heads’. Someone sat down with pencil and paper and designed these beauties. If they were not so beautiful, why is there such a demand in places like Japan for these vehicles? So many have left these shores for new homes in Japan. There was a lovely P5B for sale recently. No local takers! Where did it go? To Japan.

Daimler XJ6 4.2

I have long been an admirer of English classics and others from Europe like the earlier Mercedes, Citroens etc. My little ‘collection’ comprises a 1972 MGB (26 years: my everyday car) a series one XJ6 4.2 Daimler (21 years) and a Rover 3500 P5B. (5 years). I have owned seven Rovers previously and was negotiating on a P5B Coupe in 1977 but a sudden death in the family put it far from my mind, so I did it 27 years later, not a coupe but a saloon, with no regrets. It was my 30 year old nephew, showing great interest in these cars, who re-aroused my interest. Thank you Matthew. Classics are a drivers car.

Rover 3500 P5B

I thought viewers to my weblog might like to see these vehicles, all in great condition and all perfectly capable of a quick trip Auckland-Wellington return when desired.

Footnote: Classic cars should ALWAYS be garaged, serviced and used regularly. It’s fun.