It’s quite usual for me to arrive in a city, leave the hotel, which is different to the one we stayed on previous trips, and not recognise anything at all. There are times when I begin to doubt myself and think that maybe I’m mixing places up. The one constant is the concert hall give or take the odd change in bigger towns, but normally as we approach the concert hall I am suddenly flooded with memories of previous visits, repertoire and restaurants. It is from this central reference point that my brain begins to map out old haunts and invites the discovery of new ones.
When we arrived in Bucharest yesterday, I remembered very clearly the hall. It is very big, brown inside and the side of the building is peppered with bullet holes from 1989. We were here a few years ago when we were conducted by Sir Colin Davis. Concerts with Colin are always an important event, but I remember walking along the back stage area and seeing the sign on his dressing room, beautifully presented with the Enescu logo and it said