Last night the Boston Public Library had their first Opera Night. The theme of the night was Tristan and Isolt, as the Boston Lyric Opera is going to putting on a production of The Love Potion in November. One of my professors, Robert Stanton, was giving a lecture about the story of Tristan and Isolt so his students turned up in force to giggle at his references to Freud and nod sagely at all his brilliant points.
Interspersed throughout his talk were dramatic reading from various source material for the legend and songs from both Wagner’s famous version of the story and the newer production The Love Potion. Afterwards we got some pretty decent Thai food at Bangkok Blue and chatted about the lecture and about literature and polydactyl cats and churches made of bone. You know, the usual.
But, a little about Tristan and Isolt, just in case you are interested in turning up for The Love Potion November 19-23. There are lots of versions with little variations but the main gist is this: Tristan is a nobleman that ends up being commissioned to transport the lovely Isolt (Isolde, Iseult, Yseult etc.) to her marriage with King Mark. Isolt’s mother liked to mix up potions for some reason and gives her faithful servant a love potion to give to Mark and Isolt on their wedding day so they will fall madly in love and her daughter will be happy.
As you can probably guess, that is not King Mark sipping the roofie with Isolt. No that is Tristan who is accidentally given the potion by the faithful (but apparently somewhat dim) serving woman. Tristan and Isolt fall madly in love, carry on a protracted adulterous affair after she has married King Mark, are found out multiple times and exiled multiple times. Finally, the potion wears off and they both regret their actions. Here it gets really interesting. Was their love only because of the potion or have they grown to love each other genuinely?
It ends in tragedy, of course. But it is a foundational story of love and death and Professor Stanton’s talk illuminated how the variations in the story have been extremely telling of what the teller privileges. But don’t take my word for it. Check out The Love Potion and let me know what you think. Happy Wednesday all!
This weekend was the most conflicting weekend. At one point I almost thought someone was going to jump out of the bushes and just blow a whistle and shout “ENOUGH INSANITY.” This did not happen, unfortunately. Some of this insanity was kind of epic though, so let’s focus on that.
First epic thing: I bought a full length velvet cape with red satiny lining. Which I will use for… way too much stuff actually. I might just wear it around and swish dramatically through hallways a bunch.
It is actually quite literally this. And I wore it, along with a floor length velvet medieval gown to Rave of Thrones Sunday night. This turned out to be the perfect cap to the weekend and included a really annoying man who looked EXACTLY like The Viper, overpriced drinks, everyone making out during “Demons” by Imagine Dragons (it’s just such a good song…?), HODOR- like actually, and everyone exclaiming over my friend Killian’s freaking awesome cosplay.
Cersei was a bit jealous of the beautiful pale person with dragons.
So she did what she does best… and tried to kill some folks.
Needless to say, it was a really fun time. If you are anywhere where Rave of Thrones is happening, buy some tickets and get on that. It is a weird collection of people all shaking to strobe lights and screaming HODOR a lot. How can you pass that up?
So all my posts as of late have been about books, TV shows, or food. This is because these have become the boundaries of my life. Every day I read, watch some sort of Netflix or Hulu provided content, and eat something that is only marginally life-sustaining (Easy Mac). All of this makes for a very one-note blog, and for that I apologize. One of the reasons I started this blog was to give me inspiration to get out into the city and do things worth writing about. My version of that this weekend was wearing an apron, putting on a record of Debussy nocturnes, and cleaning the entire apartment from top to bottom. All of which is a little hard to translate photographically.
So this all boils down to another post about what I am reading and watching. Hopefully some of this will prick your interest if you are looking for some new sedentary activities, and hopefully on Wednesday I will have something a little more active to relate.
White Noise by Don DeLillo: Hilarious, beautifully written, creepifying (a bit). Great for an October evening all curled up with candle and blanket.Ripper Street: Well it has the word ripper in it so it is probably about Jack the Ripper. Correct! Sort of. It is set in 1889 London, right after good old Jack has ceased killing. The show deals with being a detective in a post-Ripper world when the shadow of the unknown murderer still hangs over Whitechapel. It has Bronn from GOT in it and Mr. Darcy from the new P and P. Reason enough to watch, in my opinion. The first season of this show is up on Netflix, the second you will have to find in the Internet’s vast aether, and the third premieres on Amazon in early November.
Enjoy Monday my friends.
My weekend suggestions for this beginning of October are to do the following:
1.Go to Coolidge Corner (or a similar venue) and see The Skeleton Twins starring Kristen Whig and Bill Hader. You can find a great review here. While you are down there don’t miss the Booksmith, of course. They have a new edition of the collected works of Lovecraft that I am just dying to pick up. And right next to that is a book of pictures of underwater puppies. So, you know something for everyone.
2.Grab you mug of hot cider, you fuzziest blanket, and your media playing device and check out these new-ish shows:
The second season of Agents of Shield
The second season of The Blacklist
Peaky Blinders (Netflix original)
All of these are great but Peaky Blinders should intrigue just because of that name. Its about a Birmingham gang in 1919, starring Cillian Murphy. How can you resist?
3.Buy your tickets to Happy Days at Babson College. It runs from November 18-23, so it will be something to look forward to. Buy tickets here.
Have a great weekend!