I know it’s now 2018 and I should really be looking forward to the future, rather than back at the year that’s past, but I fancied a quick trip down memory lane, just to help jump start 2018.
I spent the beginning of the year sat on the top tier of the New Atheneum Theatre in RCS, surtitling the Opera Department’s production of Handel’s Agrippina, a tale of intrigue, plots and schemes set in Ancient Rome. I enjoyed the experience, and it was great to have a bird’s eye view of the inner workings of an opera production. It truly was an enriching and insightful experience.
In February Rosie and I took one of our toss-of-a-coin adventures, this time to Brodick in Arran. The rail and ferry fare were actually pretty reasonable, and anyway, it was a trip taken with some wonderfully fabulous company. We got some really gorgeous shots as the sun cast a (freezing) golden light over our surroundings, and we got to see some local wildlife, including these swans and some rare sea otters just off the shore of the beach.
There wasn’t really much that happened in March, and, uncharacteristically, I didn’t take that many photographs. I was bogged down with essay deadlines and prepping for my end of year exam. One highlight, however, was that RCS was recognised as one of the Top 3 Performing Arts Schools in the World, and students got free cupcakes to celebrate!!
April 2017 was the year my mum turned 50! There was much celebration, including a family meal shared at Orocco Pier Bar and Restaurant, and then Afternoon Tea for the ladies at Cromlix House Hotel (Andy Murray was a no-show though).
Dad turned 51 a week after mum’s birthday, but grumpy won’t let me take any photos of him, so we’ll just have to settle with this little spread of prezzies and cards he got instead.
May is a hard one to choose just a selection of photographs because May was my adventure month, where I decided to just up and venture off somewhere. As a result, I have so many great photos that I really don’t know how I’m going to choose some favourites.
Wee jaunt out to Pollock Country Park for no reason there than I felt like it. Sometimes you have to just follow your instincts and go. Been a long time since I've felt this relaxed 😊 . . . #pollock #pollockcountrypark #flowers #sunshine #sunnyscotland #walking #dayout #whynot #onawhim #tourist #pollockhouse #burrellcollection #glasgow #peoplemakeglasgow #glasgowlife
At the start of the month Mum and Dad trotted off on a wee trip away for their 25th Anniversary, and Mark disappeared off to Belgium for a Karate Trip, leaving me all on my lonesome. After finishing work one afternoon, I decided I didn’t want to just go home and sit on my tod, so instead, I hopped on a train out to Pollock Country Park for a lovely, sunny afternoon out. Following your adventurous instincts can really lead to some great days out.
Millport and the Isle of Cumbrae means a lot to my family, and it used to be that most years we’d take a trip down and cycle the island, but as time’s gone on and we’ve all got busier, that stopped happening. On another of my ‘why not’ trips in May, I hopped on the train at Glasgow Central and off I went.
I snapped this little rose on a sunny day at the stables with Mum. It just makes me think of peaceful sunny days with people we love.
July was NYCoS time! I love NYCoS time! It’s like one big, dysfunctional, musical family. I didn’t post much to Instagram much in July though, even with all the lovely photographs I took.
These little guys live in my aunt’s back garden, and are the cutest garden ornaments ever!!
It now seems that every year, August is my most manic time of year. There’s always something going on. Last year I took part in the Aberdeen International Youth Festival with RCS Voices in the first week of the month. A week of glorious sunshine, lovely people and phenomenal music.
And that was just the start of it.
Next up was a week of madness and mayhem known as Piping Live!, the international piping festival that takes place at The National Piping Centre every year. That was a week of late nights, Scottish music, and pipes. Lots of pipes.
To finish off my mad fortnight of music, I performed the Brahms Requiem with NYCoS in St Giles Cathedral, Edinburgh. On two hours of sleep. That part … was not fun. I had a two-hour nap in Costa’s whilst Jasmine sat next to me doing admin. The glamorous life of an operatic diva, y’know.
Next up was a holiday in the Scottish Highlands with the family. I love the Highlands, my spiritual home. So many wonderful photos were taken, but the ones on Instagram were my favourites.
Finishing off my chaotic August was our annual visit to the Blair Atholl International Horse Trials with Mum. We lucked out well and truly with the weather that day!
September was a quiet one, but it was the month I headed back to RCS for my 3rd year of Undergraduate Study. We kicked off the year with some Handel, Mozart and Beethoven in a concert with Thomas Dausgaard and the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. Beethoven’s 9th Symphony is perhaps my favourite choral piece ever, and I was so excited to get to perform it again.
I love this photo!! Creds to Helen Corlett for her superior photography skills. This was taken at girls night at Rosie’s new flat, where we got to indulge in Rosie’s fabulously decorated window seat.
Oh, and enjoy Rosie’s cooking, of course.
Fabulous, if decidedly FREEZING, day out with the father to North Berwick. I've never been there with the tide in before; it was beautiful and terrifying in equal measure. . . . #respectthewater #northberwick #dayout #scotland #seaside #views #scottishblogger #travelsights #travelblogger #visitscotland #lovescotland #sea #goldenlight #goldenhour
I obviously get my adventurous spirit from my Dad, because this (rather chilly) visit to North Berwick was an impromptu idea from him.
The day after my visit to North Berwick, I flew down to London for my first ever girls holiday with the wife, and Katie introduced me to the wonder that is Cioccolata Fiorentine from Carluccio’s in St Pancras International Rail Station.
There was a cold snap right at the end of November, and I couldn’t resist heading out into the Park to try out my new camera.
Final rehearsal of The Fiery Angel with today before the performance on Sunday in the Glasgow City Halls!!🎼🎼 . . . . . #rehearsal #finalrehearsal #fieryangel #scottishopera #soprano #singer #scottishsoprano #prokofiev #bloggersofinstagram #singersofinstagram #blogger #scottishblogger #opera #chorus #lyublyu
I kicked off the last month of the year with some Prokofiev. RCS teamed up with Scottish Opera to mount the Scottish Premiere of Prokofiev’s opera ‘The Fiery Angel’. Months of hard work and taxing rehearsals really paid off – the show was a great success.
I think the highlight of December, or quite possibly of 2017, was the fact that I passed my driving test!! Rosie the wonder bought me a new friend to keep me company on my long journies, aptly named ‘Broom Broom’.
"What do you mean it's only a week until Christmas, Rosie? I haven't done my shopping yet!"😂😂 It's only taken me a week, but here's just a few snaps from last week's Christmas concert in Hillington Park Parish Church. Thanks Alex for having me. I loved every minute! . . . . #christmastree #chritmas #christmasconcert #groupphotos #candid #candidhilarity #hillingtonparkparishchurch #soprano #singer #musician #concert #glasgow #lovemyjob #hardwork
My final concert of the year was in Hillington Park Parish Church, with some of the most talented young women I know.
Christmas was full of food and family, and the week in between Christmas and New Year just bled into one long period of time, but I could not have gone into 2018 without a final day out without my darling best friend.
You’ve made it!
Phew, that was a long one. If you’ve made this far I thank you for having stuck around this long. 2017 was a year full of ups and downs, but I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. Here’s to 2018, and hoping it’s even better than the last.