Well, it’s officially Autumn, and alongside Strictly Come Dancing, the Great British Bake-Off has once again hit our screens. Naturally this has caused a frisson of cake-related banter in the MfE office, and last week, resulted in a ‘Bake-Off’ style challenge of our own…
‘Cake week’ saw some of the staff take on the musical theme of Antonio Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, and we can reveal that the results were varied and stunning, both visually and taste-wise. Our very own Paul Hollywood, (aka Chair of trustees, John Hess) took on the difficult task of judging the six entries, and crowned Kirstie Hind star-baker, with her entry encompassing not one, but all four of the seasons in a showstopping 3D masterpiece.
The staff went above and beyond to recreate the exciting and tense atmosphere of the Bake-off tent in our office, with bunting, a gingham tablecloth, and the cheery strains of the Bake-off theme-tune on endless repeat throughout.
Along the way on our baking journey we found out some interesting facts about Vivaldi. Did you know that he suffered from ‘strettezza di petto’ (tightness of the chest) or, as is more commonly known now, Asthma? Well, Robin’s ‘wintry lemon-drizzle’ cake was inspired by the immune boosting properties of fresh lemon juice, that Vivaldi may have been prescribed as a source of vitamin C and natural decongestant. It’s not known whether his condition was life-limiting, or if he used it as a ruse to get out of the celibate life of being a priest, (his excuse being that the incense was affecting his breathing and so a church was not the optimal place of work)! It is rumoured however, that he died of an internal infection, and some suspect it could have been an asthma attack. We won’t ever know for sure, but we do know that he died in poverty, with very little attention paid to his fine works until many centuries after they were written, even his now perennially celebrated Four Seasons.
This segues us nicely on to some work that Rachel (our assistant artistic director and head of health and wellbeing projects) is undertaking right now in ‘Singing for Lung Health’. Research shows that using breathing exercises and singing simple songs can drastically improve the lives and wellbeing of people who suffer with chronic lung conditions or disorders such as asthma, COPD and Cystic Fibrosis. We hope to bring more news of exciting projects in this field over the coming months, but rest assured, if you are singing with one of our daytime groups, or coming along to our singing workshops (such as this Saturday 16th at the Albert Hall), then it is already doing you the power of good…. but then you already knew that didn’t you?! We look forward to seeing many of you there.
- Which reminds me – BOOKWISE will have a stall at next Saturday’s Singing Workshop at the Albert Hall of fiction, thrillers, CD’s, Song books, Piano Voice and Guitar and some Music Books. For those attending the course, they would be very happy to receive donations of any paperback fiction.
Have a good week!
Your friends at MfE.
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#MfEMondays are Music for Everyone’s weekly emails designed to keep you up to date with MfE events & to circulate interesting finds, special features, and motivational moments for your Mondays! We are aiming to send out something new each week.