The Mearns Ladies Probus Club opened their 2011-2012 session on Wednesday September 22 at Mearns Community Centre with retiring president Mrs Anne Black handing over the Presidential Chain of Office to Mrs Marjorie Davidson.
Mrs Davidson introduced the speaker for the meeting Mr Neil Jones. Mr Jones, from Montrose, is a journalist and opera critic who gave a talk entitled “Operatic journey through the alphabet.“
The journey started in Spain in a small town NW of Madrid where an opera was composed and set around the steps of the cathedral. But a photograph of the cathedral revealed that there were in fact no steps!
Onward to Finland where a festival of opera takes place each year at a castle set in the middle of a lake. Over 2.000 people attend this and have to make their way to the venue over a bridge built on a number of pontoons which looked a little precarious and only for the enthusiast.
Beruit was the next place to visit and quite an unlikely venue for an opera but they have quite a following although not widely known as a city of culture.
The final place was Columbia in California whre an opera was composed and set in a mining camp.
Each place was followed by an excerpt from the appropriate opera and included various slides. Mr Jones’ love and passion for opera was evident throughout the talk and he was warmly thanked by Mrs Marian Finlayson.