Every Friday night (except the first Friday of the month, which is reserved for my daughter and I to celebrate Girls Night Out together)… is dinner with my parents at one of a handful of restaurants about town. On a recent excursion a couple of weeks ago, we dined at Macaroni Grill.
My daughter and I had arrived late, due to having conducted dog-walking and cat-feeding duties at home, followed by unexpected winter-weather traffic. By the time we arrived at the family table, which was positioned near the restaurant’s entrance, the soft sound of opera music was filling the air. I hadn’t realized it was being sung live, but my sister informed me that one of the hostesses was going table-to-table taking requests.
My sister also informed me that the woman had already sung O, Mio Babbino Caro, so we couldn’t request that. I searched the operatic files of my brain for another option and came up with Nessun Dorma. (It’s my favorite of those I know.) No one at the table seemed to be familiar with it, but they were happy that I at least had something to request.
When the hostess appeared moments later at our table, all eyes turned to me to make the request. I asked, “Do you know Nessun Dorma?” The operatic hostess said, “Yes, but it’s not in my range.” I was kind of surprised, because… I figured that if this little girl could sing it, then it wasn’t too unusual for a female voice to be able to carry the tune.
Alas… she declined and offered Musetta’s Waltz from La Boheme instead. The table accepted, none of us knowing that opera well enough to know what we were about to hear. Of course, the melody was familiar once she got going….
When the hostess had finished, it was either my mom or my sister who asked her to translate what she had just sung. You can hear it and see the interpretation for yourself here: Musetta’s Waltz.
Strangely, as it turned out, the song selection seemed somewhat appropriate at the time.