A festival has an epic quality. There is a surrendering to a timetable - a certain inevitability and acceptance of where to go and when - an immersion that doesn't exist with a night at the opera. Even the most anti-social amongst us can embrace the camaraderie and warmth of familiarity in moving from one event, or one place, with a group of people, with strangers, and through sheer festival circumstance having the time and opportunity to mull over and critique what has just been seen, and to anticipate what might be up next.
Other perspectives, other histories, attitudes and opinions make for wildly interesting conversations. And because festival opera can breathe life into works that may not often be mounted, and present in non-traditional spaces in unconventional ways, there is a sense of sharing in something very, very special - exclusive to the people who have made the journey, out of town, out of home.
We may never again meet the people with whom we discuss opera, life, travel, tastes and experiences at a festival. But we remember them as clearly as the opera we heard and saw. Our regional opera festival - our '2nd Annual International Opera Festival' - spread across three wonderfully unique wineries in the heart of Victoria - looks set to welcome back intrepid Full Festival ticket-holders from last year. An eclectic group of people whose paths do not cross, except at the Nagambie Lakes Opera Festival. The prospect of reunions and renewing of acquaintances genuinely makes us smile, and puts an extra spring in our rehearsal step