Last evening the sound of the back-up signal on a snowplow led me to the window for a moment or two – just to see what progress was being made on clearing some of the blowing snow that was piling up. The winter that we had managed to avoid so successfully for so long has come, as we knew in our hearts it would. The mere thought of plowing out through the drifts this morning had me shivering. So as diversion from the icy blasts and to drive the cruel winter away I stop over to see what was happening at Mitchell’s place in Spain. And not only was Mitchell moving he was going for a country walk – visually and musically – and that frost edged scene out the window and those first bars of the winter blues were driven out of my mind.
His musical selection reminded me of another moment in the Sondheim at 80 celebration at London’s Royal Albert Hall back in 2010: the finale to the first part of Sunday in the Park with George. It is a performance charged with emotion and beauty but I find it is still difficult to beat the original performance in 1986. That blend of Stephen Sondheim‘s music as performed by Mandy Patinkin, Bernadette Peters, and company and James Lapine‘s staging is a combination that brings together vocally and visually Georges Seurat‘s painting: it is one of the great moments of musical theatre.
So to get away from the winter I thought I’d imagine it was Sunday and take a stroll on La Grande Jatte.
On this day in 1833: During the First Anglo-Afghan War Dr. William Brydon, the sole survivor of an army of 4,500 men and 12,000 camp followers, reaches the safety of a garrison in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.