The azalea flower was suggestive of the new lodger, with a passion for color itself, spraying out from its dramatic center like a cat’s whiskers for effect and purpose, rising stealthily through the shade to reach for the wind as much as the sun. After a nap and persuading her grandmother to try a little broth, Donatella spent the afternoon where buzzing wisteria and honeysuckle blurred the angles of walls also stepping up with budding hibiscus and geraniums to larger terracotta pots of bay and lemon trees surrounding a sunny plateau. A city sky was more available there than in the street, flat baskets drying basil, a rusty ironwork table and several chairs reminding how lunch or supper used to be taken for granted.
From Chapter Three of A House Near Luccoli, published by All Things That Matter Press, my novel imagining an intimacy with the legendary 17th century Italian composer, Alessandro Stradella.
I recently followed an early music ensemble on Twitter called The Sonnambula Viol Consort. This consort is based in New York City. It’s director, Elizabeth Weinfield, contacted me through my website to thank me for connecting, and for my interest and work on Stradella. She also let me know of some Stradella concert activity that has been happening recently at Columbia University , sponsered by Artek Recordings, which included a lecture by foremost Stradella biographer, Carolyn Gianturco (who has read my novel and engaged me in some interesting email conversations as a result). It is so good to see Stradella being celebrated again!
Here is a snippet from Stradella’s Giovanni Battista, a rehearsal for the recent concert referred to above.
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