Tagged in: HISTORY

DAY# 114 of 365-The Marriage of Figaro-A Comedic Opera

Last night I was invited to the opening night of Opera Atelier’s new production, The Marriage of Figaro , by Mozart.

A few weeks ago I saw some of the performers at 1st Canadian Place giving a mini preview of tonight’s show.

Below are a few short video clips I took that day….

Opera Atelier-A little Opera in Downtown Toronto & A little taste of opera in downtown Toronto-OperaAtelier.com

So based on the amazing short performances I saw, and after talking to a few of the performers, I knew I had see this opera.

But tonight’s production exceeded my expectations, and then some.  From the moment the curtains opened, I was in awe and transported back in time to 1786.  The costumes were divine.  Colourful, ornate, elaborate, big, bold and such attention to detail.  The Marriage of Figaro was VERY funny and witty.  A night of laughs, and woven into this comedic opera is a tale of love, betrayal and forgiveness.  I am so lucky to live in a city with so many talented artists.  What a spectacular experience.  I really enjoyed every single thing about this opera… from the singing, to the magnificent costumes, to the set.

The opera is in ENGLISH.  Also thanks to Sun Life Financial, “SURTITLES technology” was a part of the performance, which just enhanced the experience of the opera, by making it more accessible, so anyone can understand and enjoy opera.  I am all for making the arts MORE ACCESSIBLE to EVERYONE from all backgrounds.  And I believe the opera is for EVERYONE!

(The first time I fell in love with the joys and absolute beauty of opera, was when I was a teenager.  I was watching the Oscar winning movie, Philadelphia, starring Tom Hanks and Denzel Washington , during the popular and very moving opera scene when Tom Hanks was explaining the meaning behind  \”La Mamma Morta\” performed by the most renowned opera singer of the 20th century Maria Callas to Denzel.

I dare you to watch it without being moved.  Simply beautiful.  The POWER of MUSIC!)

~Here is a short video of part of the preparation process, before this beautiful and elaborate opera took the stage…

Opera Atelier Celebrates 25 Extraordinary Years

I always try to personally thank the performers and artists for sharing their talents and for making me smile and leave happier than when I first arrived.  Here are a few pictures I took with some of the very talented and friendly artists in the production….

HANK to all the artists from the actors, choir, orchestra, set and costume designers, everyone behind the scenes, Opera Atelier, and all the sponsors and the donors who make such world class art, available and accessible to the people in the city of Toronto.  I, no…’we’ are truly grateful!

DAY# 112 of 365- EARTH DAY and the Magical Japanese Cherry Blossoms in High Park!


Today I had planned to do something else for ‘Earth Day’, but a dear friend invited me to see the Japanese Cherry Blossoms in High Park, instead. I like to go with the flow and I don’t really have a set plan everyday during this 365 day journey (and my plans over the past 3 months have often changed the last minute), so I decided at the last minute to go with her and be one with nature. I don’t do this enough, and the weather is getting much warmer and everything is in bloom and coming back to life now that spring is here. So today was the day. Getting out and enjoying nature is one of my favourite things to do.

After seeing the movie ‘Avatar’ yesterday and loving the message of the movie which to me was to ‘appreciate, protect and respect the beauty of nature’, I am reminded to get OUT of my tiny downtown apartment and enjoy nature. And a lot of people are not aware that, Toronto is over 18% PARKLAND, so there is a lot of beautiful nature to enjoy in the big city!

Today marks the 1st weekly series on Toronto 365 of “NATURE IN THE CITY” and I thought going to see the Japanese Cherry Blossoms in High Park, (that were a gift to Toronto from Tokyo many years ago) would be a fitting beginning of this series.

It was my first time seeing the Japanese Cherry Blossoms, even though I was born and raised in Toronto. Its one of those things that I always said I was going to do one day.

What a beautiful expression of nature. It was like we were transported to Japan.

People were walking, talking, singing, taking pictures, eating and EVERYONE was happy and smiling walking through this natural wonderland. When the soft pink petals fell it was like huge pink snow flakes were falling on my head. Living in Toronto for 30-something years, I cant believe this is the 1st time I have witnessed this hidden gem.

Japanese Cherry Blossoms in High Park, in Toronto, Canada

Here is an article about the history, and some interesting information about the Japanese Cherry Blossoms and how they arrived in Toronto….

Celebrating Japanese cherry blossoms in Toronto

I particularly liked this sentence in the article….

“In Japan, cherry blossoms are called sakura, and the delicate and ephemeral blossoms are said to remind the Japanese that life is short, and already over before we really understand that it has begun.”

As my motto for my 365 Day Vacation or Journey through Toronto says…. “Life is to be ENJOYED and LIVED, get out and have FUN!”

I have been fortunate to have vacationed in over 40 countries and 100’s of cities around the world, and after over 3 months of having a daily mini vacation in my home city of TORONTO, I can honestly say this has been my best vacation ever! I love discovering and rediscovering my city. I am having the most fun, meeting so many positive and friendly people, experiencing and learning something new everyday. I LOVE T.O. :-)

Being that is EARTH DAY, I am not going to get on a soapbox and preach to people how they should recycle more and turn off their lights, etc. because I don’t believe that is the most effective way inspire people to respect and take care of nature.

I may be wrong but I personally believe that showing people the beauty of nature or taking their hand and walking them through one of the many beautiful expressions that nature gives us, (as I captured in these pictures below) I think is much more effective and inspiring.

How could anyone not want to protect, respect and take care of NATURE after seeing and experiencing such beauty?