Day 1: August 17, 2014
By 3 PM, the four singers have arrived in my beautiful little Long Island town. Some are already friends, some are new to one another. Three hours later, I am witness to a small miracle: they are singing together for the first time—only they sound like they’ve been an ensemble for years. Tossing the counterpoint of William Bennett’s “Come Live With Me and Be My Love” from voice to voice, shading the dynamics as if John Eliot Gardiner were leading them, the quartet erupted with a spontaneous kind of buoyancy that I hadn’t dared to hope for. No one told them what to do; they knew.
It’s getting to the end of summer, and a part of me thinks I should go on vacation 24/7. But today I realized that this is the vacation I really want: to wed the joy of music with the delights of Orient (the easternmost village on the North Fork). Salt air and sweet voices, the miracle of bringing songs to life at the most precious, poignant time of the year: this is what my soul most craves right now.