Friday, August 17, 2012

Celebrating Alexandra Nehra

I am thankful that Alexandra Nehra once gave me this small embroidered circle from her native Hungary, and grateful for the sweet photo of her sitting in my lap and giving me a big hug -- and I am sad and shocked that Alexandra is gone from the earth too soon.
Some personal memories are below, but I recommend her fascinating life story that you can read if you click on the web address below, which will open for the right link to be clicked.
Below Alexandra's photo, I will add my poem for her, rewritten over the years.  Good-bye, dear Alexandra, and my good wishes to her husband Joe Bencharsky, and their long-time friend, Sharlene LaRusch.
It was sweet of Alexandra Nehra to let me participate when she directed a piano and flute version of LUCIA DA LAMMERMOOR at the Russian Center, featuring our friend Cynthia Strelkoff, with her four-and-a-half octaves.  My modest involvement, but a lot of fun:  I was the waiter at the banquet, painted sets, painted the cups gold, that were still tacky when I brought them on stage, serving the "guests."  She had said she wanted to cast me sometime as the drunk in DIE FLEDERMAUS -- "and I won't direct you," she said, "you will just be yourself."  Hmmm.  She, Joe, and Sharlene were such a loving household.  I emailed a poem that refers to the fact that there is a famous Hungarian novel about THEODORA that she had always wanted turned into an opera where she could play the main role:

For Alexandra Nehra
Just when you think she is diamond hard, she smiles,
and a bright bouquet explodes as from a comedian's gun.
Her ivory skin, in stage light, is intimate candlelight.
Her amber eyes are jewels set in the gold of her skin.
When she sings, the scrims dissolve, and Beauty begins
with notes of colored stone she places in an aural mosaic
of the woman she is but also longs to portray as an opera
not yet written:  "Flaming Mezzo Melts Theodora's Gold"

1 comment:

Cynthia Strelkoff said...

I am sad everyday. Thank you for this beautiful poem and memory. Love, Cynthia