Experiences shared by Jill Hamer

[With a prologue by Karen]

I am known by many to be a bit of a nuisance in trying to encourage (i.e. cajole) people into writing something to share in the magazine.  Something that interests them which might well be of interest to others too … and why not?!

My friend Jill, a regular reader of the magazine, has kindly taken up the ‘baton’ and wishes to share her enthusiasm and love of Opera, in the hope that it might encourage the uninitiated to give it a try.

Thank you so much Jill, for sharing your thoughts with us, it was interesting and encouraging.  Perhaps it might also persuade others to contribute to the magazine too, as it is a magazine based on our faith and our people.


Karen and I are very fortunate as due to my connection of many years with the Welsh National Opera I qualify for tickets for Dress Rehearsals for performances given by the WNO.

We have recently attended two super performances, the first, “Die Fledermaus” (The Bat) which was light hearted and witty.  Written by Johann Straus the younger, it contained well known music including a waltz in the Ballroom scene which was  danced with immaculate choreography.  The soloists were excellent and the chorus and orchestra were very good, as always.

The second, and most recent performance we attended was ‘Der Rosenkavalier’ (The Rose Bearer) by Richard Straus.  Totally different in musical character of course.  The music at the climax of the last act was sublime.  The soloists were wonderful, accompanied fantastically by the orchestra.  The whole performance was superb.

The Millennium Centre is a wonderful venue for all kinds of performances to cater for all tastes, but music, particularly music ’with a background story’, stirs the emotions in a unique yet subtle way.  The Guardian newspaper sums it up in this way:

“Why is opera important? Why is any art important? It offers us a reflection of who we are, how we relate to others, and what it means, collectively and individually, to be human. Opera performed live is a uniquely thrilling experience – at its best, it is hugely powerful and the most emotionally direct of all art forms.”

So, watch out for the performances mentioned above, taking place at the WMC on the 17th and 24th June.  Give it a go.  I’m sure that you won’t be disappointed.

Jill Hamer