05 JunFrom Dorothy: Travel to Holland & Day 1 of TruckStop™: Mundial!
The travel day was surreal. I got up at 4 am to finish all the arrangements I need to make when
I travel (home life continuity, and all), got the family to our 6 yr.-old’s birthday party by 11, took
presents home and rushed off to Lincoln Center for a 3 pm concert with the American Symphony
(which ran an hour longer than predicted), raced home again to pick up bags and meet ride to the
airport at 6:30. Picked up Ralph, was whisked through checkin at JFK by some sympathetic souls
at Delta, and made it to the gate an hour before flight time, just in time for the announcement that
the flight would be delayed by 4 hours. Finally boarded at 1 am. Arrived in Schipol at 2 pm the
next afternoon (around the same time as Neil‘s flight from Dublin), was met by our host Theo
Andriessen of Muzieklab, informed that Neil was not aboard scheduled flight. Waited for next
arrival from Dublin and drank coffee for 2 hours. Drove 1 1/2 hours through rush hour traffic to
Tilburg. Mary already seated, smiling, in sidewalk café in front of hotel. Shower, dinner, pass out….
Then, ETHEL’s TruckStop™: Mundial, the first day….
We’re off to a FABULOUS start!!!!! Gert Gering (also of Muzieklab) met us in front of our hotel,
the Mercure, at 10 am with our collaborator, South African bass player Carlo Mombelli and walked
us to our rehearsal space. We got right to work reading a handful of the 75 (!) charts Carlo brought
to choose from: “Zambesi”, “Bass Spirit”, “Theory” and one about an eccentric local man in
Johannesburg who used to drive around in a car which he’d half-filled with sand so he could
grow a palm tree which projected through the back window – each more delicious than the last.
We offered him parts to “Be-In” by Evan Ziporyn and “What Blues” by John King. When Theo
showed up and took us to morning coffee, we already felt we were floating in amazing material
and might really have trouble finding the chance to use enough of it.
Listening and learning and looking for his own space to contribute was our Dutch collaborator,
electronica artist/songwriter Rutger Hoedemakers, aka About. He began sampling the live sounds
of the rehearsal and discussing where it might be effective to add layers, loops, intros, transitions…
After lunch, which Gert brought in for us (such a great idea!), we charted out 2 of Rutger’s songs,
“Joralemon Street” and “Let Bygones be You”. He invited us to fully ETHELize them, and we
began by trying out different string colors. We also felt that “Let Bygones be You” particularly
invited treatment by our accordion artist from Moldavia, Oleg Fateev, who will join us on the
weekend. These resources, these creative individuals – the bass player, the electronica artist,
the accordion player and the Brazilian percussionist, Simone Soul, who will join us tomorrow evening,
blended with the string quartet make a vivid, breathtaking palette. This 2 week immersion will be
explosively, beautifully productive!!!
It really is going great….
All my love,