Last Tuesday evening I attended a reception for the opening of an exhibition at the Free Library called No Home To Go To: The Story of Baltic Displaced Persons 1944-1952. The exhibition was curated by my friend Irene Brokas Chambers, who was herself one of those displaced during that time. The exhibition is very emotionally charged and well worth seeing. It will there all summer.
At the reception, I met two very interesting women: Beth-Ellen Kroope and Donna Morein. Beth-Ellen caught the spirit of the exhibition perfectly by simply noting how touching it was. Touching was just the right word. But Donna gave me a little present that I shall never forget. Donna is a mezzo-soprano and a very good one. We got talking about Richard Strauss and she drew me aside and sang in my ear sotto voce a passage from the Presentation of the Rose duet from Strauss's Rosenkavalier. She sang this very beautiful music every bit as beautifully as it deserves to be. But for me it truly was a magical moment. I shall never hear that music again without remembering this very private performance. It will remain a cherished memory for as long as I have a memory.