About The Music ! 

We always say that our greatest assets are our lovely music-loving clients. This is often endorsed by our hotels and restaurants who often say " what delightful clients you have". Of course, all our tours offer the joy of Music - in various forms - sometimes highly-organised ( with tickets having been procured 18 months in advance ), sometimes calling on long-held relationships with colleagues and friends and other times purely impromptu ( perhaps when we find music at a restaurant - we have been known to just join in !). It is always very carefully chosen and using true professionals with something unique to offer ( not the awful tourist performances that are offered in places like Vienna and Rome ).   Here is an overview of some of the music from past tours -- and just a small part of it.

      
LA SCALA - THE HOME OF OPERA
Of course La Scala is the pinnacle of Italian opera. Many of our large list of clients have been to Milan but often failed to find tickets to La Scala. We now have a great relationship with ticketing and sales departments. We do not buy 'questionable' re-sold tickets through ticket or travel agencies as these risk being reclaimed at the time of being scanned on arrival. We do everything properly and honestly !!

A SICILIAN TENOR !
In Sicily, we spent weeks finding a suitable local tenor to join us on stage for a farewell to our 'Southern Passion Tour ' in Siracusa. This fellow was fabulous and sang all the traditional folk and opera repertoire. Of course 'Nessun Dorma' was a favourite ! We joined him for a few pieces ( unrehearsed of course ) and we had a wonderful time. The venue was a local jazz and music bar/venue in the centre of town, who happily opened their doors for us - at no charge - and made us extremely welcome.

 


  PIZZICA IN PUGLIA, ITALY
In Puglia, we tracked down the leading exponent of the mysterious 'Pizzica' music - a unique folk style with a combination of origins. We were thoroughly entertained firstly over our long lunch at a winery and then outside in the courtyard. They travelled for two hours to come to us and it was fabulous ! Irene and her team are part of a larger group who travel the world to world-festivals and have a huge local following.
NOT A BACK-STAGE TOUR -- BUT AN ONSTAGE TOUR
Anyone travelling on our tours knows how determined we are to deliver more than you may be expecting. In Palermo, there is an opera house tour available for most groups or individuals. Of course, we wanted to get our clients onto the stage and not just looking at it from the auditorium ! This took 30 minutes of negotiation and assurances that we were singers and had briefed our clients on the protocol. The stage had the opera set of Don Giovanni on it and the director graciously greeted us as we spent a wonderful few minutes to see the grandeur of this wonderful theatre.

 
 
WORLD - CLASS --- RIGHT ON OUR DOORSTEP
Our annual trip to the Opera on the Harbour in Sydney is always a highlight. The setting is incomparable and the production and standard of performances simply world class. Central Premium seats of course ensure we see and hear everything as it is intended ! The four night stay is at our favourite 5 star hotel and features other convivial activities - including a final night dinner with music !

OUR ITALIAN NIGHTS IN SYDNEY - WITH THE INCOMPARABLE ROSARIO MAIO
Who doesn't love the piano accordion?  Nothing takes you more easily to the simpler world of Italy and their vast array of music. Rosario is 'an institution' at festivals and special events throughout Australia and into Asia. Hailing from Giardini Naxos, the first settlement in Sicily ( North Coast ) he is a true entertainer and is usually available when we are in Sydney. From Verdi to Bocelli - he knows it ! 


 

GREEK PLAYS IN A GREEK THEATRE IN ITALIAN
Sounds confusing ? It wasn't ! In fact in was one of our greatest theatre experiences. It was riveting from the start. We were surrounded by locals and seemed to be the only tourists. The locals were mostly of university student age and they were fascinating to watch as the action unfolded.
They knew it word for word.
Many of our group did not understand much of the text but the action was easy to follow and the drama ( with music too ) was mesmerising. Truly like going back 2,000 + years.
This took place in the magnificent Greek Theatre of Siracusa, Sicily.

 
BUDAPEST : Gypsy Violins, a 30s band and the 'cimbalon'.  No touristic performances, devised for non-discerning cruise-ship clients, for us. On our first night in Budapest we hired the private dining room at one of the city's premier new restaurants. To this we added a wonderful, talented and sophisticated 'Gypsy band' reminiscent of the 30s. They played everything from Lehar & Strauss, with one of the many highlights being the virtuoso solo performance of The Third Man theme on the Cimbalon. On this tour, the music was plentiful, from Lohengrin and a fabulous Mozart dinner in a period ballroom in Prague to the National Folk group of Hungary and Opera at the Vienna State Opera.
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