Sweet Sixteen

It has been a joy and such an engaging challenge to present 16 weeks of music alongside George from our balcony in London. We have explored a variety of repertoire, with the hope to engage with different tastes in music so that each week we hope that we brought a little fun to our neighbours, both virtual and from within our complex. Thank you so much for watching!

For me, it helped ground my weeks. Providing inspiration and a deadline for tasks, which would add up to a musical sharing. Sometimes it was our main priority and other times it was a joyful release of tension. I simply love performing and to be able to share and continue to make music has been a gift. I feel very lucky.

I would love to hear what you have enjoyed the most about our shared experience?

George and I decided to take a little break from the weekly concerts, so that we can attend some rehearsals and give us some time to relax, recharge and learn some new material. We hope to evolve the idea and see where it takes us. Would you be interested in the concerts continuing? I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments or by email.

One of my New Years’ resolutions was to experiment with video, and this string of concerts, which emerged from a spontaneous event, has opened my eyes to the fun of sharing regular video content with you. I hope to continue to explore this over the coming months. So, stay tuned and as always, I would love to hear your feedback as I explore the possibilities further.

I hope you enjoy this week’s balcony concert and celebrate 16 weeks with us.

Program:
Do, Re, Mi – Sound of Music
Bibbiti Bobbiti Boo! – Cinderella
Be Kind and Courteous – Britten
Piangerò la Sorte Mia – Handel
Baby Shark – Pinkfong
Quando m’en Vo – Puccini
Don’t Cry For Me Argentina – Evita
Oh Luce di Quest’anima – Donizetti
Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious – Mary Poppins

73 thoughts on “Sweet Sixteen

    1. I’m so happy that you like Whip Crack Away from Calamity Jane so do I. I also love Secret Love, there are a couple more I could learn from Calamity Jane. I have a long list of songs I need to learn hehe.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  1. it was so special to be able to listen to your balcony concerts and so thoughtful of you to offer them. I always love the arias and you sing them beautifully..
    Enjoy your break and recharge. Much needed during these scary times.

    1. Thank you Jovina, it was a good exercise to perform a couple of arias I’ve not sung since an undergrad at the RCS it allows me to see what work I need to do on them to bring them up to standard whilst being under a bit of pressure rather than just in practice space.

      I’m preparing for an exam this Thursday keep your fingers crossed for me.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. Thank you Darlene, we appreciate you and your encouragement.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte and George x

  2. Dear Charlotte, to my mind the most important thing is that you used the precious time for good. It has done you a world of good in your professional field. Sharing videos is popular & maybe it is necessary for you, singers. So, all what you have done has turned into a great success!
    Best wishes,
    Maria

    1. Thank you, Maria, there are a couple of schools of thought about sharing videos, you’re advised not to share videos unless they’re studio professional and practically perfect in every way, this puts performance artists under tremendous stress and singers often do multiple takes at big cost once until they perform what they consider perfect which takes the spontaneity out of some videos.

      A lot of the songs and arias we’ve performed are old repertoire it’s been exciting to relearn them quickly, my neighbours made a lovely comment on Friday though when I sang a couple of arias I’ve done before and I said after the concert that I needed to go and relearn some more they said that they are enjoying recognising the arias now. When you think how often people rehear popular songs before they begin to like them it made me rethink my concerns about repeats.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. Dear Charlotte, it seems to me that there is nothing better than to hear something already known as it will bring back the memories! Don’t rush for new things. You know well that there are singers who have been performing the same for decades & they gather stadia!

        Regarding non-professional videos: try as you are. The same idea is been promoted for designers. We must make only professional photos to sell our products better. Absurdity, isn’t it? Relax & move on! Just do it! 🙂

        Best wishes,
        Maria

  3. Well done !! It was very good. A beautiful video series. Maybe do something in 1 year for “anniversary of Balcon concerts”.
    And, personally, I think there is really something to develop around this mixture of musical styles to create something and tour with it.
    We will have an opportunity to discuss it.
    Best thoughts for both of you my friends !!!

    1. I have had such a good response locally that I’m sure we can do something in August, it would be good, neighbours willing to test out a couple of ideas with them.
      I look forward to discussing your ideas.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  4. You have chosen such lovely compilations each week. The variety is superb! Your break will be just what you need to refocus and I am certain that inspiration shall strike and you will guided to even greater.

    1. Exactly I need some thinking time. Everything I read about our Industry and creatives being cut loose is just terrifying but I refuse to get bogged down in negative worries. I’ve not been in the glorious position of having two years worth of work lined up so I ready for inspiration to strike right now hehe.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  5. I have thoroughly enjoyed every single concert and send a big thank you to you both for giving your time and talent so freely to help lighten these difficult times, we’ll done! 👏👏 I will always vote for a return of them and you already know my favourites 😁😘

    1. You’re most welcome. We’ll be using our downtime well. First off an exam Thursday keep your fingers crossed for me.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  6. Bravo, Charlotte and George! I have enjoyed every concert. As you may know, my husband is an invalid, having suffered three strokes, and for the first time yesterday I broadcast your video from YouTube to our television so he could watch. I am thrilled to say that he was enraptured and now wants me to broadcast some of your earlier videos so he watch them too. And he wanted me to be sure and tell you how much he enjoyed it! I hope you enjoy your time off and that you get to visit your family and relax.

    1. We’re very happy you have enjoyed the concerts and introduced them to your husband too. I’ve got so many plans for the next couple of weeks I must make sure I finish them all.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  7. Bravo, you two! Wonderful! It all sounds great, but it sounds like you are channeling Julie Andrews on those two songs. Your neighbors are all so lucky to be able to hear these balcony concerts live, and I think a lot of them realize it 🙂 Good luck on putting a new CD together.

    1. What a compliment that is Trent I adore Julie Andrews. We’ve been lucky to have their support even in the drizzle and winds whistling around some weeks hehe. They’ve told us they will miss us so at least we haven’t overstayed our welcome. Thanks, we need a bit of luck and a better piano hehe.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. Half serious – have you looked into a software piano? George plays the digital piano he has so he gets the performance right, but the sounds are the sounds of a 9′ Steinway or whatever… And more serious – your voice sounds so great with the Italian opera arias and other “classical” and opera pieces that it almost surprised me how good you did with Julie Andrews, which is more of a Broadway sound (but with a British accent 😉 )

  8. Of course, this was another great performance. What is George poking at? Are the musical notes on a digital screen? In my day, we used paper and carry music books all the way up giant mountains through a snow storm to perform. 🙂 Young people and their technology. I’m kidding, though I haven’t seen that before. Digital music notes. What will they think of next? Before long, I’ll be able to watch movies on my phone, too. 🙂

    Have a great holiday. Keep up the magnificent work. ..and thank you for your teaching me how to spell “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.” Because that is ridiculous. lol

    1. George’s poking at his computer screen, yes the scores are on a digital screen. We still carry music books and use paper to do translations and make notes and most opera scores are in book form to highlight and put tabs in but technology is fabulous and it’s getting better all the time, an interactive, automatic page-turner would be fab.

      I love that word I always have, Mary Poppins was one of my all-time favourite musicals.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. We are always looking forward to the next concert, Charlotte! Best to you and George and have a nice weekend! Fabio

  9. Sixteen weeks a little over on quarter of a year. That is a long time. As others have said, your balcony concerts are wonderful. I believe they are a great way to for you two to keep in practice with no other venues for performing. You are sharing your love and joy of music and your love and joy of each other with the world, and helping to make everyone much happier during these difficult and stressful times. Thank you for being such a beautiful, caring and sharing couple.

    As far as continuing your balcony concerts, I love them, but I also want to see you and George find a way to make a living during these hard times. If you find yourselves not having time to do balcony concerts, that would be a good thing for you all, but a sad thing for your balcony fans at home and abroad; however, I think everyone would understand. Enjoy your rehearsals.

    1. Or nearly a third of a year – you’re making me regret not doing #17 this Friday but I have an exam on Thursday to prepare for hehe. The concerts have kept us sane and happy too.

      The sales we’re doing are keeping the wolves from the door but working seven days per week with no break is getting tiring and I’m going to have a recharge to give me some thinking and research time.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  10. Charlotte & George.
    You have kept us all entertained for 16weeks, with the beautiful performance’s.
    It has been great, and something to look forward to at the end of the week.
    To hear you both and get to see you, amazing..
    Your neighbours have certainly appreciated you entertaining them.🤗
    So enjoy your break, and I look forward to seeing you soon.lots of Love.😘😘

    1. We’re going to leave them up on the YouTube channel for now so please dip back in if you miss seeing us in action. We appreciate them allowing us to sing out loud each week too.

      See you soon I hope,

      All my best wishes
      Charlotte

  11. You have brought amazing things to people. And your—both of you– n doing what you love best has shone like a beacon. That is one of the things I have enjoyed and the fact you can both tackle anything. I am seeing the word rehearsals here and I am hoping something is on the horizon for you both now and soon we will be hearing you are both back out there.

    1. I’m happy to bring the opera to people who don’t typically listen to classical music or opera at all, and it has been a joyful reminder to me of the old music theatre rep. I know. Some of these song requests are outside of my usual range but I’ve enjoyed figuring out how to do them without a microphone and still get the projection so the people in the far block can hear them.

      Freelancing is precarious at normal times, George has a couple of projects but most of mine have been cancelled and the remaining ones at the end of the year aren’t secure and depend very much on how long the government will not permit the sector to function. My wedding venue hotel have said we’re their only booking left for this year (this rebook date is also only provisional now) and their entire diary of all functions have cancelled for 2020 so we’re not the only industry juddering to a halt. Thanks for thinking of us though Shenanne.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. I know and it is appalling. We are becoming a society without anything and while they say, oh but the this and that are open again, people are not for going. It is nothing to do with being afraid, it is the hoops they are having to pay good money to leap through and what they are having to put up with once they are there. The business of getting married as you say, well look at it, because people want that day to be special and normal and none of this is. But they say, oh people can get married now. I am so sorry for people in all these trades and businesses. And I am shaking my head over the arts sector and people like yourself and George. I watch you both out there on your balcony giving it your all, both so talented, singing for your supper in a way with no hope of that being on the table any time soon xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

      2. Thanks again for your support, it can be a scary time to concentrate on this too much but I believe action is the solution and I just need to find a way to continue to develop my online stage and try to earn an income from it. I was wondering if you had one of your books recorded as an audio books that I could listen to? I was listening to a book by Hannah Rothschild ‘The House of Trelawney’ that I can recommend and you maybe could expand into that and do the voice narration yourself or are you still working and not furloughed?

        Best wishes
        Charlotte

  12. The balcony concerts have been fun to watch and provide enjoyable listening. It’s obvious both of you are enjoying yourselves while entertaining neighbors and those of us like me in the video audience. Your concerts are a much needed break from the constant bombardment of partisan political bickering as Covid-19 rages across America. Thanks so much for sharing your talent and time with us.

    1. I can’t stand the political bickering and point-scoring, you might be dismayed to hear I don’t watch the news programs on tv at all now and rely on George and my parents just to give me the important changes from the tv updates Joe. You are most welcome.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. I watched Evita in New York with Ricky Martin it was absolutely fabulous and I love the film and thought Madonna made a super Evita. I’m glad you enjoyed my interpretation.

      Best wishes as always,
      Charlotte

  13. I’d love to see more balcony concerts – especially since that may be the only way I’m ever able to see you perform! But certainly if your lives are getting back to normal, you may not be able to do them every week. Maybe once a month or for special holiday occasions?

    1. Thank you, Lynn, we will certainly try to organise more in the future with the neighbours blessing of course.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

    1. Now that sounds excellent I’d love to do a puppet show with music for the children that would be fun. I remember years ago at a birthday party it was either mine or my brothers’ party and we had a Punch and Judy show it was terrifying lol.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  14. Dear Queen of quarantine quidditch have you thought about performing your own original compositions as they would be royalty-free and might break you from the pack, the school of fish, and the forest.

    Well, the trope you would be the royalty paid.

    Your Grace

    1. Queen of quidditch yay, only my voice can fly though. I had a fabulous composition teacher at the Junior Royal Northern College of Music he used to always compliment my ideas and inventiveness and just wished I had the full range of skills and the time to concentrate to back up my ideas lol. Never say never.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

      1. I shall heed your advice as you are surrounded by keen sensibilities.

        I for one, would love to hear an original score from a fresh voice.

        But sense and propriety must have their reign in spite of your cachet.

        -on second thought, I know your secret nuclear launch code is “ygg”

        Oh btw,

        You Go Girl!

      2. Oh my goodness you are on to me! I love my launch code 🚀 that has been my theme for this week between my Mum and I except she typed You Go Girk which made me laugh.

        Have a lovely day Charlotte x

  15. In addition to the lovely entertainment – wonderful musical experiences – I feel like the concerts have brought you a little closer to all of your readers who can get to know you and George better when you sing from your balcony! Cheers to you for 16 weeks of music – you and George give us hope for the future.

    1. Thank you so much, Sheila, I’m glad to share our performances in this way and show people more of what I’ve been writing about for all these years.

      All my best wishes
      Charlotte

  16. I haven’t listened yet to your latest balcony concert but I will; meanwhile I thought I’d answer your question. Of course I’d love you to continue your balcony concerts, even less frequently if that makes it a bit easier for George and yourself. I’ve just began to take a short walk outside, and even sit in the sun when there was any, for the first time in about six weeks. There is no doubt that your concerts have helped my recovery!

    1. Thank you Roger, so happy to hear you’re getting out into the sunshine a bit more and take some outdoor exercise that is good to read. I hope you enjoy sweet sixteen I really enjoyed this performance.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  17. I love your dress! I can see how much effort you both put into the concerts each week. I hope you enjoy your break, you deserve it! Perhaps you could do a concert once a month? Or just do occasional live on YouTube for one or two songs? You could discuss the songs to your audience? Anyway, thanks for entertaining us these past weeks and good luck with your future endeavours xxx

  18. Loved your concert series, Charlotte, and The Sound of Music and Mary Poppins are favorites. I would suggest you do what is best for you and George. You both definitely deserve a break, but would love to see you perform again in the future when the time is right. Stay well and be safe. Lauren 💗

  19. This has been lovely, Charlotte. Thanks for all the wonderful music. I would enjoy more concerts when it suits you and George. Be blessed in this tumultuous time!

  20. This was a beautiful concert, Charlotte and George! I have enjoyed this music series very much, and would love to see it continue. You two are a great team, and you both love to perform. That love of music is the magic carpet that carries your beautiful, clear and expressive voice and George’s wonderful piano work to your audience.

    There is a wedding song by Noel Paul Stookey of Peter Paul and Mary that I would love to hear, “There Is Love”.

    1. I will investigate your song suggestion Lavinia I’m always looking for nice wedding repertoire. George is busy for a couple of weeks so I will miss performing live and I’ve really enjoyed singing into the courtyard. George has had serious piano withdrawal our Yamaha keyboard is fine for my purposes but we may need to hire a piano soon.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

  21. Another wonderful ‘balcony concert’ Charlotte and George, listened to finally on the perfect day – bright sunshine in a completely blue sky and, what is more, today is our 20th wedding anniversary (we don’t usually celebrate the date of our civil wedding in UK but rather our wedding in Stefan cel Mare’s ‘St Nicholas’ church in Iași on 29 October. But in the current circumstances any excuse for a celebration, no?
    So we’ll have a champagne picnic on the grass outside our flat this afternoon! 😃.
    Back to your concert, I knew I was going to love it from the opening two numbers which just enhanced the sun streaming through our window.
    From then I loved the whole concert but if I had to choose favourites I’d go for the Handel (superb voice control Charlotte) and the Donizetti.
    It all just made my day! 😘 x

    1. Fabulous to hear Roger, many congratulations to you and Petronella on your anniversary 😘 .

      Our blessing was to be in Iași the week after our English wedding, we’re no longer sure when the new date will be but I am looking forward to it. I am extra especially pleased that you had a celebration today and a champagne picnic sounds perfect.

      The Donizetti is a favourite of mine and I’ve been doing a lot of work on the Handel so I appreciate your feedback on those.

      Best wishes
      Charlotte

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