We had the finals of Operation Rising Star yesterday, as part of the all-day entertainment extravaganza scheduled for the MWR outdoor stage. Over the course of the day they had a number of bands (including my aviators, though being that it was a Sunday, I was otherwise occupied), three comics on tour from the U.S., and a band who comes here about once a year.
The two comics I heard used some incredibly "flowery" language, which I found a bit surprising, but which the crowd loved. I felt offended by the incredibly mysogynistic 'humor' of one of them, who seemed to advocate violence toward women (or at least considered it funny). Oh well, at least I don't ever have to listen to the guy ever again!
I was asked by lots of people, over the course of the last week, whether I'd be singing my adaptation of "The House of the Rising Sun" again at the finals of Operation Rising Star. I consented, as long as I could sing something I really wanted to sing.
Yesterday morning I woke up with a scratchy throat and phlegm that just wouldn't quit, so I had great misgivings about whether I'd be able to sing at all, let alone get through "Nessun dorma" from Puccini's "Turandot." I've never really attempted to sing this aria in public before a sizeable crowd, so knowing that I had the upper respiratory thing going on did not inspire confidence in me.
As I was on stage singing "Nessun dorma," I noticed the sunset off in the distance, since the stage faces west. The clouds were illuminated with hues of magentas and oranges and ruby reds, against the azure of the early-evening sky. It was somewhat distracting, to be honest, and I found myself wishing I could get out my camera to snap a few photos.
After I finished "Nessun dorma" I sang the parody of "The House of the Rising Sun" again. This time, however, all of the Very Important People on Post were there, including the Big Cheese himself. I'd printed up 100 copies of the lyrics, and I could see people in the audience singing along.
I heard later that the Big Cheese was not particularly enamored of my artistry (or perhaps it was the lyrics)....
From what I can tell, the majority of the rest of the crowd loved it.
SPC Jorge Cardona won the Operation Rising Star competition, and will in the running to go to the finals in Washington, DC this fall for the finals. Congratulations, Jorge!
I left the stage to go flying.
Blessings and peace to one and all,
Fr. Tim, SJ