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2003-10-05 - 11:58 a.m.

Singing on a stomach of Leberkaese

I have just woken up – a recovery sleep following my 2 and a half days with the Blasorchester. Some of those people are truly in insane – especially the older ones. But insanity can lead to some amazing moments.

We arrived on Thursday evening to the splendid welcome (ahem) of the Schott-Mainz Mensa. A meal of old potato salad and Leberkaese. If you don’t know what Leberkaese is: it translates directly as “Liver Cheese.” Now, in case you were ever thinking of inventing a new meat product, let me give you the tip that adding the word “cheese” to the end of it automatically makes it disgusting. ANYTIME you put the word “cheese” after a body part, it’s bound to be repulsive. Think about it. Liver cheese. Head cheese. Stomach cheese. Thigh cheese. Toe cheese. I’m grossed out just typing this.

So apart from lodging a wad of Leberkaese in my stomach, Thursday was uneventful. I was still recovering from my cold and so I needed to get to bed immediately – so I pulled the “I can’t party with you for artistic reasons” trick. As a result I apparently missed a fantastic singer in an Irish pub, and a very strange West-meets-East party called “Good Morning Lenin” – our entire orchestra went to see how a bunch of “Wessies” would organize an “Ossie” party. Mixed reviews - but I think they were at least amused.

Friday was the day of the concert and as such was consumed largely by setting up, warming up, standing around and waiting to perform, and then finally performing in the Rheingoldhalle – a huge performance hall with wonderful acoustics. It’s the first time I’ve ever sung a solo in front of 2000 people. In the end, it is not so different from singing in front of 200 people, because with the lights dimmed, you don’t see them. And it felt wonderful, smooth, and easy – a fantastic memory. And getting the largest bouquet of flowers I’ve ever received in my life certainly contributed to the high I felt.

I was thankful to the orchestra for giving me this opportunity. And for their overflowing friendliness and support for how it went.

Indeed, my life is frighteningly like David Hasselhof’s. I had to come to Germany to achieve any kind of musical fame... But I doubt he did it with Leberkaese in his stomach.

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