Opening Bars: Singing at Eighty – and Beyond

Written by Roderick Robinson
Category: · Arts & Photography

Retirement’s fine until old age closes down your options. First ski-ing went, then distance swimming. Gardening never appealed. Music? Yes, but listening wasn’t enough. Everyone has a voice so why not sing – but at eighty? 
This is the story of how far one man got in eighteen months, touching base with Mozart, Schubert and Britten en route. Finding a teacher who agreed that, at eighty, he might not have enough time to absorb musical theory from ground zero. Coping with ancient lungs that tended to run out of puff. Overcoming rhythmic incompetence which once saw him dance a quickstep to The Blue Danube. Learning to decode and love the printed score. Bursting into tears when he temporarily wore Sarastro’s robes. Best of all – finding his own singing voice.

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