Carri passes on

Our friend and regular contributor, Carri Shaw died on Wednesday 25th April, 2007. She was 25. Carri was among the first contributors to the sharecare4u chat forum, and was noted for her frank talk. Read her story on the main website “Miss black-t-shirt and sweat pants”, and her views especially on “disability and sensuality”, “about me” etc..
Sharecare4u will not be the same without Carri.

carri1.jpg

Her partner Stevie wrote a few words about Carri.
“In terms of words from me about her, all I can think of is this couplet:
‘She shone so bright / she went to join the light’. Then I can’t think of any more words after that…
One thing that I am going to try and arrange to get done somehow is having a tree or sapling planted in her memory. I know that she’d like that as she loved trees.
The tree of memory
Branches golden
Echoes of your laughter
Shine forever.

The sunlight within you
Became its own season
The world that you left
Is still warmed by you.
You had a star inside your soul
Now you are sunlight”

Carri will be sorely missed by sharecare4u.

La Scala Milan in Accra

Historic cultural crossover performance today
By Alhaji Harruna Attah, The Accra Daily Mail*
It is certainly not for the money.
It is certainly not for recording contracts.
So what could Daniel Barenboim and the Orchestra and Chorus of La Scala Milan be doing in Ghana? La Scala, one of the most famous orchestras in the world, will be playing its first ever concert in Africa, not in Pretoria, not in Johannesburg, not in Cape Town, not in Cairo, not Alexandria, not Rabat, not Casablanca, but here in Accra, Ghana. Something good must be happening in and to Ghana. The Principal Guest Conductor, Daniel Barenboim, himself a living legend and one of the greats of the piano and conductor’s baton would be in charge in this historic African performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.
It may not mean much to many Ghanaians, but in terms of global cultural crossovers, this is as major as debt cancellation. Barenboim and La Scala are in town to celebrate with Ghana her 50th Anniversary of independence.

If the sound engineering is sound enough to permit a CD to be produced, it would certainly be a landmark recording. Today’s performance is a very significant cultural step being taken by this historic European cultural icon.

The Teatro alla Scala (or La Scala, as it is known), in Milan, Italy, is one of the world’s most famous opera houses. The theatre was inaugurated on 3 August 1778, under the name Nuovo Regio Ducal Teatro alla Scala with Salieri’s L’Europa riconosciuta.

The current edifice is the second theatre on the site. A fire destroyed the first, the ancient Teatro Ducale, on 25 February 1776, after a carnival gala. A group of ninety wealthy Milanese, who owned palchi (private boxes) in the theater wrote to Archduke Ferdinand I of Austria asking for a new theatre and a provisional one to be used while completing the new one. The neoclassical architect Giuseppe Piermarini produced an initial design but it was rejected by Count Firmian (an Austrian governor).

A second plan was accepted in 1776 by Empress Maria Theresa. The new theatre was built on the former location of the church of Santa Maria della Scala, from which the theatre gets its name. The church was deconsecrated and demolished, and over a period of two years the theater was completed by Pietro Marliani, Pietro Nosetti and Antonio and Giuseppe Fe. This theatre had a total over 3,000 seats organized into 678 pit-stalls, arranged in six tiers of boxes above which is the ‘loggione’ or two galleries. The stage is one of the largest in Italy; the proscenium is 26m wide and 27m high, and the stage was originally 20m deep.

La Scala hosted the prima (first production) of many famous operas, and had a special relationship with Giuseppe Verdi.

La Scala’s season traditionally opens on December 7, Saint Ambrose’s Day, Milan’s patron saint. All performances must end before midnight; long operas start earlier in the evening if need be. Ticket holders are not allowed to enter after the performance has begun.

Daniel Barenboim who was born on November 15, 1942 is an Argentine-Israeli pianist and conductor. He was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina; his parents were Russian Jews. He holds Spanish citizenship in addition to his Israeli and Argentine citizenships. He first came to fame as a pianist but now is as well-known as a conductor, and for his work with mixed orchestras of Arabs and Jews, and for his collaboration with Palestinian American intellectual and activist Edward Said. In 2001, he sparked a controversy in Israel by conducting the music of Wagner.

He started piano lessons at the age of five with his mother, continuing to study with his father Enrique, who remained his only teacher. In August 1950, when he was only seven years old, he gave his first formal concert in Buenos Aires.

Barenboim made his debut as a pianist in Vienna and Rome in 1952, Paris in 1955, London in 1956, and New York in 1957 under the baton of Leopold Stokowski. Regular concert tours of Europe, the United States, South America, Australia and the Far East followed thereafter.

He made his first recording in 1954. Following his debut as a conductor with the Philharmonia Orchestra in London in 1967, he was invited to conduct by many European and American symphony orchestras. Between 1975 and 1989 he was Music Director of the Orchestre de Paris, where he conducted much contemporary music. He made his opera conducting debut in 1973 and made his debut at Bayreuth in 1981, conducting there regularly until 1999.

He served as music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra from 1991 through June 17, 2006. He also is music director of the Berlin State Opera (Staatsoper Unter den Linden) and the Berlin Staatskapelle since 1992. He now is conductor for life at the Berlin State Opera. On May 15th, 2006 Barenboim was named Principal Guest Conductor of the La Scala opera house, in Milan, Italy. It is in this position that he is making this historic African appearance tonight.

*With some notes from internet sources

Anaemia

I understand the reasons for cutting out red meat. My naturopath explained that red meat could pose a notable increase in cancer risk. But after a blood test this week, I find that I’m anaemic.
I faithfully eat my green leafy vegetables, so what else can I eat to get my body’s iron requirements?
These diets can be really confusing. I’d appreciate some advice here.

Wishing all…

Happy Easter, everyone! Wishing you the best of the season.
In Ghana, Christians wore black on Good Friday to commemorate the crucifiction of Christ, and they wear white on Easter Sunday for the ressurection. This year Easter has co-incided with the birth of Mohammed, so there’s a festival called Damba being observed by Moslems throughout hte country.
Easter is also the period that many people living in the cities visit their hometowns or villages to be with their relations. We don’t have an Easter egg culture, but some people do give them.
How do (did) you spend yours?

Drugs and their efficacy

A good friend of mine who is on long-term drug therapy just discovered that the drugs he had bought from the UK were not efficacious. He was faithfully taking his medication but the level in his blood kept going down, leading to a relape of his illness. Thankfully his doctors asked him to buy from another source and he immediately improved.
In the same way I was prescribed carbamazipine for painful spasms in 2003. This drug had stopped my spasms instantly when I took it about five years before, but this time, the spasms continued. I decided to get what came in blister packs from the original manufacturers and immediately got relief.
This raises the question of generic drugs – are they as affective as the originals. Many people would rather spend a lot more money and go for the originals and the assurance that they are getting the right thing.
As for those producers who reduce the strength of the drugs to make profit, they are criminals without a conscience. I think people like that if caught, should be charged with murder.