Sunday, 13 January 2008

St Martin-in-the-fields

Yesterday I decided to try and get over this odd writer’s block with chapter 13 (sorry, C, still not done!) and go get inspired. Chapter 13 is all about the Queen’s Coronation Day in 1953. So good pal R and I decided to go and walk the route to see if I could pick up any hints and tips to work into the novel. And while we were up there milling around, someone pushed a leaflet into our gloved hands about a classical music concert at St Martin-in-the-fields.

I love that about London, the fact that there is always something going on around the corner, and it doesn’t have to cost your left kidney. Cheap tickets were £6, and although it is lovely to see the orchestra, it is not strictly needed, as you can close your eyes and drift into the music even from behind a pillar. As well as the fact that we are both pretty skint, so cheap seats it was.

And it was great! The orchestra was the Belmont Ensemble of London, and they were playing Bach, Mozart, Purchell, and building up to Vivaldi Four Seasons. We sat in the top aisle, on hard dark mahogany church pews, and the music simply soared around us in that beautiful church.

Classical music sings to my soul. It can be heartbreakingly beautiful, uplifting, fantastical… I gazed across the hall above the subdued lighting from the candelabras and my mind danced with dust motes in the light. I dreamt of creating oil paintings again, I imagined two girls sitting opposite were actually angels (as their white coats behind them almost looked like wings), I thought of the novel and that one day it will be a reality, I saw myself waltzing back down an aisle to Vivaldi, I pictured a studio filled with light, I imagined being a mother, I saw a theatre stage lit up in all its glory, I saw books stretching high to the ceiling, and a garden glimpsed through a window. I imagined a huge ensemble dancing for me, colours and light retreating and forming, patterns and shadows and half-lights...

And before I knew it, I was sketching again, something I haven’t done for years. It was near the end, during the Four Seasons L'estate, and I quickly sketched my view of the church on the back of the playbill.

And now I feel all inspired again - quick, chapter 13!

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