Thursday, June 21, 2018

A Concert at Chiesa San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore

Wednesday, 20 June, 2018

It was another sticky, scorching day in the Lombardia region. How I wish for those good old days of cooler temperatures, rain and snow.

I know, I know, for months I've been asking where the Sun had gone and would it ever return.

The last few days come under the heading of Careful What You Wish For!

A morning trip to the Esselunga
Super Market is always a good call

First of all, the Esselunga is air conditioned, the Villa Skorpion, not so much.

The cold temperatures in the produce section are delightful and as for the frozen food area . . . 


I almost laid a beach towel down in those frosty aisles.

The Atlantic Bar
a part of every Esselunga

On my first visit to this Esselunga, my guide and confidant Dario D'Adelfio taught me that no trip to any Esselunga in Italy was complete without a café and a brioche.

Who was I to buck a 1,000+ year old Italian tradition?

GREAT advice Dario!

We spent most of the rest of our day indoors reading, doing laundry and continuing to sort out what items to take home to California in two weeks, what to leave behind for next season and what to give to charity.

We did have a plan for the evening though.

One of the things that Laurie and I have grown to enjoy during our ten EuroBall experiences is attending concerts in ancient churches.

Tonight at 8:30 p.m. just such a concert was being held in Milano's Chiesa San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore, a.k.a., the Sistine Chapel of Lombardia.

Our problem was getting home after the concert as we did not know how long it would last and we were not sure at what time the last train to Venegono Inferiore departed at night.

Thus we turned to our more than reliable travel guides Coach Bumba and Santa Barbara for advice. As always they were spot on!

We drove our car to the Milano Metro Red Line's Lampugnano stop in Milano's outskirts.

The Lumpugnano station sits next to a HUGE commuter friendly parking lot and we easily found a covered space on the lot's first floor. The Metro station was about a two minute walk from our car and, at the end of the night, the four Euros cost of parking for about five an a half hours seemed reasonable to us.

GREAT call Santa Barbara and Coach Bumba!

With the car safely parked, we took the Metro Red Line into the downtown Milano, switched flawlessly to the Green Line at the Cardorna stop and exited the underground at the Lanza stop near the Brera district noted for its art galleries, nightlife and good restaurants.

We enjoyed a good but way too early meal by Italian standards. We had to make this touristy faux pas since we would be at our concert during Italy's primetime "mangia, Mangia, MANGIA" hours. 

We found a good spot in the Brera district where Laurie claimed to have just eaten the best eggplant parmesan she had ever had! My pizza was good and the pinot grigio was exceptional.

We opted to walk to the concert despite the diminishing heat to work off some of our meal.

As usual we found some interesting sights both new to us and old.

One PERFECT column for the
entrance to Lombardia's
 Army Command Center . . .

. . . and the other

A Chiesa in bright Summer sunlight

The Orco logo pretty much frightens
me from ever buying any, even if
they have been around since 1911

 Chiesa San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore
dating from the early 1500s

We got to the church about 40 minutes before the start of the concert only to find out that they were sold out.

We were told that if we stayed seated in this beautiful entry chapel, decorated with amazing Bernardino Luini frescoes, there might be a chance of cancellations.

Thus, our name were added to the Stand Bye List which already had four people on it and growing.

As we watched the process, we realized that most of the "sold out" tickets at the Will Call table had not been paid for until their "owners" arrived to pick them up. This bolstered our spirits as unpaid tickets are easy to give up on due to last second complications on the part of their "owners".

In the end, all of us on the Stand Bye List were able to see the concert in the Chiesa's steamy Choir Room.

The Concert's Venue . . .

Our concert featured a duo. Jacopo Taddei played both the saxophone and the clarinet while his partner, Roberto Porroni strummed he guitar.

Their nine song set was good as was their one song encore.

Here are three samples of our concert for your enjoyment.

Hungarian composer Béla Bartók's
Sei Danze Rumene

Italian composer Enno Morricone's
Death Theme from the 1987 movie
The Untouchables

Later in the same Morricone song

Ennio Morricone's score for the 1988 movie Cinema Paradiso is simply wonderful in my opinion.

We both experienced another enjoyable musical evening in a great setting.

It was time to head home after
a brief walk to the Metro station
through Milano's beautiful streets

Living La Dolce Vita! 

Reading Is FUNdamental

Good Summer reading

Not Patterson's best tome but it helped beat the heat the last few days.

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