Wednesday, August 6, 2008

"One day you and your children will be in the choir."

Ella and I were doing a lot of "getting ready" for Nana's big concert. Nana is a singer in the Melbourne Millenium Chorus. While Jamie slept we did nail-polish, texta-Henna, body-jewels and twiggies. How lovely that her hands have unconsciously made the shape of a heart in the photo. I got interested in Henna after seeing the scene in Mira Nair's lovely film The Namesake where the bride is decorated by the women in her family before her wedding. Anyway I like the idea of decorating yourself in offbeat ways. And obviously I'm not the only one.

As soon as we stepped onto the street, Ella was accosted by a friendly lady "I just want to say you look absolutely beautiful." We went into Federation Square early, so no rush - take it nice and easy, meet Pa, eat chips. On the way we came across a jazz trio just starting their gig in the Atrium - they played a while and then the trumpet player lowered his trumpet and sang. We stopped to listen and Ella and Jamie danced and darted about.
Mum/Nana's concert was called "Limpopo", directed by the brilliant Andrea and Valanga Khoza. This year they were singing with the Mafumani Secondary School Choir from South Africa. This is the fourth Millenium Chorus concert we've been to and I find it so moving to hear the hundreds of voices and hearts singing about freedom, love, peace, family. It was altogether a lovely experience for me, I had, with several other families, some of the 'free-space' seats at the back, so my two dancers could be free. Lots of people with kids there, so no growly scowlers. Late afternoon sun shining in the through the glass walls of the amphitheatre, people wandering past outside - singing, dancing, music. Ella, discovering that she could navigate the glass balcony behind and above the choir, stood directly above her Nana in the choir - a protective whirr of red hovering above Mum's head. A silver-haired volunteer-helper behind me had this whispered conversation with me:
"Your daughter?"
"Thank you."
"Do you know someone in the choir?"
"My Mum."
" Ah."
"My daughter is standing on her head."
"Ah yes. Patsy. Alto. Lovely lady. Lovely."
"She is lovely."
"One day you and your children will be in the choir."
"I hope so."

1 comment:

Nana said...

I'd like henna hands sometime too. The concert series is lovely and, for me, very moving. It was such a pleasure having you all there. Mum/Nana