I have been very lucky with my fireworks experiences. For two years recently I was Brian Thomson’s guest at Clover’s little party on the front bit of the Opera House forecourt – which shook when the fireworks went off. Though no aerial display could outdo the ‘Tribute to Broadway’ choreographed by one of the judges of So You Think You Can Dance‘. The same creative genius who once said to Meryl Tankard: ‘Okay so how many houses do you own? I have five!’
Then last year at a very late moment I got a call from a couple of gay guys who live in a strange gaudy red block of flats on the corner of Macleay St where it curves into Woolloomooloo Bay. The 95-year-old widower architect who lived at the front with expansive views of harbour and city wanted to have a party. Unfortunately all his friends were dead. So the gay-boy neighbours rang around and hired an especially selected well-dressed crowd. It was an amazing night – the glamorous interior had not been touched since the 50s and the gentleman himself insisted on pouring the Champagne with the savoir faire and athleticism of a mere 80-year-old.
We could see the fireworks going off from five different spots. Fireworks over – party over. Our superb host was ready for bed. I hope we kept him good company. This year I have struck gold again with an invite to Opera Australia’s performance and party. It’s Gale Edwards’ La Boheme, set in German Weimar, designed by Brian Thomson with costumes by Julie Lynch.. I’ve seen it and its’ very good. Here we have new singers in the lead roles: Nicole Car in her Sydney debut as the seamstress Mimì and the tenor Gianluca Terranova as the poet Rodolfo.
I am not going to cite the ticket prices – perhaps at a quiet moment during Christmas lunch you could whisper something to your Mum or your Dad (while pouring them another sip of the ’76 Grange!) Worth a try…Actually this might help: the ’76 Grange is about thee same price as the best seat in the house – a gilded barge!. More modestly for the price of a ’76 Grange you can still get two very nice seats in the middle of the stalls and attend the after party.