(Part 3 of 3... so far!)
Man, I am running out of steam! Time for bullet points:
* the Sirius interview was beyond fun - it was so cool to meet Margaret Juntwait! There was lots of giggling, and LW and I got to tell the world how much fun we’ve had getting to know each other. This will be a wonderful souvenir from our debut…
* getting dolled up for the party with LW in our dressing room; my pin-curl hair didn’t really cooperate, but my dress was rockin’, made complete by the addition of a rose from one of my bouquets.
* meeting M&E and KL (representing the Boulder contingency!) on the Grand Tier for hugs and flowers and collecting opening night programs
* taking pictures with GB (who was my chorus master at Santa Fe and who conducted my off-stage singing in Tabarro; it was so special to share this with him!) and YR, my sweet and supportive colleague
* one glass of champagne and a small plate of food, knowing that I had to leave by 1am to get home and try to get to sleep!
* running into my teacher and getting to share a bit of the “afterglow” with him and his wife, together at a table with GB and his partner and Heidi Grant Murphy
One o’clock struck, and with Mark’s gentle encouragement, I left the party, feeling not a little like Cinderella: walking down the grand staircase with my arms full of flowers, leaving a party that was just beginning. I cried, and I couldn’t tell if the tears were sad or happy; probably just overwhelmed! I felt so good, it had been such a wonderful night – so why was I leaving?! Because there was more work to do…
I started a new tradition this Christmas season of sharing my concert flowers with other people who would get joy from them, and since I had four bouquets and only one vase at home, I knew they wouldn’t live long if I kept them. I gave two bouquets to two of the night security guards, who both had ladies at home who would enjoy the surprise. (My family knows of this tradition of mine, and I think they like it, so don’t think that I’m dismissing the joy of my flowers; I’m just trying to spread it around!)
The other two came home with me, one in a huge vase of its own. I was laden with bags, clothes, and flowers (and still in my party shoes), so I grabbed a cab just outside the stage door. As we drove past the front of Lincoln Center, I could see the party going on inside, glittering under the chandeliers. I was sad to leave, but so happy to know that I had been there, that it had been my party, my night. The only Met Debut I’ll ever have…
Mme A, you warned me that the things we look so forward to can sometimes disappoint, and I went into Friday being aware of that possibility. But I am happy to say that it was everything I hoped it would be and more.
Thank you for letting me write it all out here; thank you for reading, thank you for cheering, thank you for loving this crazy life as much as I do!