The Morris-Jumel Mansion bills their property as Manhattan’s oldest house.
Since I always try to do one new thing each time I visit NYC, I made the long trek north in Manhattan on Sunday afternoon, and was rewarded with a delightful hour. The docent in the kitchen was especially informative.
George Washington used this house as his headquarters before the Yankees had to abandon Manhattan. And Aaron Burr lived here for a while until the end of his life. The house is steeped in history, and to think that I was standing in George Washington’s study was, well, a little overwhelming.
View from the herb garden.
George Washington’s study.
Piano in the octagon drawing room.
Aaron Burr’s bedroom.
Dining room. Washington dined here.
By the numbers:
13,374 steps Thursday.
2 meetings with songwriters.
And 1 most extraordinary dessert.
Amy’s Bread had a butterscotch cashew bar calling my name. I succumbed.
And speaking of succumbing, Hello, Dolly! was a paroxysm of delight. Bette Miller is out this week; I saw Donna Murphy in the title role.
While Miss Murphy’s voice may be ever-so-gently frayed, her energy, spunk, spirit, and timing — and her legs — are intact. And I loved her.
This revival had me in tears of joy a couple of times. Kate Baldwin is glorious as Miss Milloy; Gavin Creel, a most engaging Cornelius. I could not erase the memory of Josh Borgmeyer (may he rest in peace) as I watched Taylor Trensch as Cornelius, though.
One of the stunners of this current revival is the chorus — rich, glamorous, able to move as a unity, and full-throated. “Sunday Clothes” will never be bettered, visually or aurally.
I am in NYC for a few days of research, alumni work, and shows of course.
For lodging, I rented a flat for five nights.
Yesterday was a long day that included rising at 3.30 a.m. in order to make a 6 a.m. flight to LaGuardia. I dropped my bags at the flat, then went to meet Kurt Hellerich for lunch and the play Oslo at Lincoln Center.
The play = wow. Just wow.
My 2.5-week summer holiday has commenced, as of the close of the work-day yesterday.
Unlike other summers where I’ve taken a full four weeks away from the office, I’m departing for a shorter term this year, since I am music-directing two different shows and only have 1.5 weeks off between the end of The Sweet Smell of Success and the start of rehearsals for Out on Broadway: The Third Coming.
But summer holiday is filled, as usual. I’m off to NYC next week, for a short visit and some research. Then I have a dash over to Lee’s Summit and on to Des Moines to see Billy Budd at Des Moines Opera.
The next few weeks, until August 10 or so, are still three-days-in-office, and some long weekends. I still have reading to do, and music to compose, and local tourism to do!
But I wish I were abroad this summer . . . .
From the Church of St. Konstandinos, Hyrda, Greece.
At Exeter Cathedral, England.
JC outside the Estates Theatre, where Mozart conducted the premiere of his opera Don Giovanni. Prague 2009.
Esterhazy, Austria. The tomb of Haydn.
2005. On Nanjing Lu, the main shopping street, Shanghai.
When I win the lottery this weekend (which I’m going to do), this New York City flat will be mine.
Three and a half weeks ago, I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, crossing from Manhattan to Dumbo in Brooklyn.
From the Brooklyn Bridge:
From Dumbo, this view of the Manhattan Bridge:
And from Dumbo, the old railroad tracks on a side street: