Herine's Top 10 List from NMoP

Having a little distance from our magical two weeks in Vermont has prompted me to make a top 10 list of things I hope to never forget about the experience of NMoP’s inaugural season:10. S’mores every single night. By campfire, gas stove or wood stove, doggone it, we didn’t miss a night.

9. The enormous Luna moths who co-existed peacefully alongside us city dwellers, and were impervious (or desensitized) to our initial screams of horror. For some reason, I have always associated disarmingly large insects with the southern hemisphere. Not so!

8. The culinary artistry of Chef Steve, which has been documented in great detail in earlier posts. I’m letting the unflattering pic of me enjoying eggs benedict stay because it is, after all, a candid representation of the experience! The chef’s innovations were so inspiring that Matt Koschak has been eating unusually well since my return, in my efforts to reverse-engineer some of his dishes.

7. Jennifer Beattie’s rendering of Daniel Kohane’s art song set to the poignant text of Charlie Sheen’s infamous rant. I love art song, but somehow EVEN MORE!

6. The incredible care given to us all by Jenny Beck, the owner and director of Point CounterPoint and its facilities. She exuded empathy, compassion and support at all hours of the day and night, and does her job extraordinarily well.

5. Kenji Kuriyama’s humble acceptance of his title as emcee of Salons, and his eminent side-career as a stand-up comic. I look forward to seeing that unfold!!!

4. The fabulous energy and boundless enthusiasm of the cello studio, consisting of Tristan Rais-Sherman, Natalie Spehar and Katherine Haig. I learned so much from each of them and will never forget the sexy sambas or the Muczynski Trio con scordatura.

3. Living in very close (albeit comfortable) quarters with the other Fifth Housers for two weeks, and loving every one of them as much upon leaving as upon arrival. Seriously, not every chamber group can say that.

2. Lake Dunmore’s glassy beauty. As much as my favorite lake will always be the one that flanks our fair city of Chicago, the serenity and gentle undulating waters of Dunmore carried inspiration and calm. A five minute wade or quick canoe ride had the rejuvenating effects of a spa treatment.

1. The privilege of rehearsing and performing with such exceptionally high-level composition and instrumental students. Adam brilliantly mentioned in his opening remarks that each person there was considered a future colleague of ours. The transcending of the student-teacher relationship to that of colleagues during the mere course of the festival was truly phenomenal.

  Fifth House Ensemble