Sunday, 10 February 2013

Miss DiDonato, and Miss Ly

I was perhaps a little curmudgeonly in my reaction to Joyce DiDonato's new Drama Queens CD of baroque opera arias. In truth, it is a magnificent compilation of magnificent arias, sung with the greatest artistry and technique by a soprano equal to any in the current constellation. And heard through wireless headphones, the sound is not as shrill as I first thought. Perhaps I am becoming allergic to the rasping sound of “authentic” violins. Anyway: a plug for Sennheiser's RS 170 wireless headphones; I began my music listening 60 years ago via a wind-up “portable” gramophone player with steel needles, and the Sennheisers give perhaps the most authentic sound yet.

A reader chides me for the current absence of anything to do with gastronomy. In truth, my current menus at home have not been terribly exciting. However, from recent adventures I can mention: the restaurant at the Whatley Manor Hotel (near Malmesbury). Superb French-type cuisine and highly enjoyable as long as someone else is paying the bill. And Miss Ly's restaurant at 22 Nguyen Hue, Hoi An in Vietnam if you ever feel in need of real food in an authentic local environment. The food comes from the Central Market that is around 75 metres down the street. Superb.

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