One of the things you are entitled to when you become a Canadian citizen, along with the right to vote and a Canadian passport and, let’s face it, the privileges and benefits of being a Canadian, is a Cultural Access Pass – a ‘passport’ of sorts to all kinds of cultural spaces and places and travel opportunities all over Canada.
It’s a nice touch, even if you are unlikely ever to use a fraction of it: the kind of thing we Canadians do, to make people feel welcome, by giving them a tour of the house.
In the case of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, the home of the Canadian Opera and Ballet Companies here in Toronto, what a very fine house it is too: an airy lightbox of glass, steel and timber, by the South African-born architect, Jack Diamond. We were guests there last night, for the dress rehearsal of Bellini’s opera, ‘Norma,’ and what a fine treat that was!
There is a staircase, in the foyer, of frosted glass, that descends in terraces from the upper landings, and the crowds descending reminded me of a poem, whose name escapes me, by a mid-century American poet, whose name escapes me also, but it doesn’t matter because here instead are some images: taken on my iPhone, incidentally, and processed in Lightroom.