What is a Fazioli anyway?
Day 14/138 2022/2023 Viking Neptune World Cruise
I have a very good friend in Canada, who I golf with mostly every week at Bridgewater Country Club, and who is a very loyal bog reader, who will definitely enjoy today’s blog post. He knows who he is!
Last evening we met up with Mike and Sharon, our new friends from Canada who live very close to us back home, to go to ‘Torshavn’ for a ‘Pre-Dinner Party”. ’Torshavn’ is the nightclub or after hours club on Deck 2 near the Star Theatre that usually hosts ‘Late Night Tunes’ from 10pm to Midnight. The Live Entertainment on Viking is usually in the Star Theatre which runs from 9:15pm to 10pm, so having Torshavn very close to the Star Theatre works for folks who like to stay up and have another drink, dance and enjoy some live entertainment after being in the Star Theatre. We have not been those folks yet, choosing to go back to our cabin usually at 10pm, I’ve reserved some time at night for blogging, while Richard usually falls asleep and since I’m a ‘night owl’ anyway, it seems to work for us.
The very fancy entrance to Torshavn nightclub on the Viking Neptune. You can see that the ‘TORS‘ is lit up on the Torshavn nightclub sign. Torsten Hagen, from Norway, is the Chairman of Viking. Torshavn is also the Capital of the Faroe Islands. I think the subtlety used by Viking taking the first 4 letters from Torsten Hagen’s name as well as using the name of the Capital of the Faroe Islands (which are reigned by Denmark, Norway) is brilliant and most people would miss it if you weren’t really thinking about the connection.
Torshavn has all of the premium liquors on the Viking Neptune which cannot be found in other bars on the ship. Richard even found George Dickel bourbon at Torshavn last evening! He did not have a ‘Dickel’ as he likes to call it, because we were only there for one drink before dinner. WARNING: Dickel can be quite a problem if consumed late at night sitting around a fire pit, spinning long tales!
The Viking Band and Ocean Groove featuring Jovie and Joji played some upbeat pre-dinner dancing music for us to enjoy over our cocktails. The furniture and atmosphere in Torshavn is very cozy and comfortable and set up perfect for conversations around the cocktail tables.
We were really looking forward to the feature entertainment last evening with Mr. Roy Tan in his “Unplugged” set which was going to be performed in the Atrium on Deck 1. Every other entertainer we have had on board, including Roy’s first performance has been held in the Star Theatre. The Atrium is three storeys high and with the soft finishings of couches, and chairs, I was thinking the acoustics for Roy’s piano performance were going to be amazing in the Atrium.
The giant screen in the Atrium was ready for Mr. Roy Tan to arrive for his 9:15pm performance last evening.
As you can see all 3 levels of couches and chairs around the Atrium were packed, along with people sitting on the Atrium steps to listen to Roy Tan’s performance last night
Roy thrilled us with his virtuoso performances and shared some very neat stories too. He mentioned who his muses were and one of his muses is David Foster. He had the opportunity to meet David Foster at his home and play his piano! David Foster has the 14 Grammy’s he has won on top of the very large KAWAI piano in his home and he cannot fit all of his statues on his piano, so 2 of his Grammy’s are in his bathroom! Canadian David Foster, the composer and arranger has perfect pitch and so does Roy Tan, who also arranges and composes music. When Roy went to play David’s piano he warned him that a few of the piano keys were actually out of tune, because he knew that Roy would pick up on it, since he has perfect pitch! David Foster said that Roy’s arrangement of “Grownup Christmas List” a song written and arranged by David Foster, was one of his favourites in recent years.
Roy shared the story of how one of the highlights of his career was in 2016 when with his playing partner Rosemary Siemens composed “The Courtial Concerto” dedicated to the Ambassador of Rome to the world and premiered the ambassador in attendance, in the Basilica Santa Maria Sopra Minerva in Rome. When Mr. Fazioli of Fazioli pianos learned that Mr Roy Tan would be performing his debut concerto at the Basilica for the Ambassador of Rome, he had a Fazioli piano brought into the Basilica solely for Roy to play that evening!
Fazioli is an Italian piano company making handcrafted pianos with superior workmanship and extraordinary materials, coupled with the best technicians, musicologists, acousticians, engineers and furniture makers. Only 150 Fazioli grand pianos are built every year at a factory just north of Venice. Each unique piano is a work of art and must be personally approved by Paolo Fazioli, himself a concert pianist and engineer, before it is sold. The Fazioli piano enjoys an incomparable reputation and are being sought by musicians, concert halls and music schools as well as private clients who desire these outstanding pianos. A Fazioli piano costs between $128,000 to $234,000USD. What an experience for Roy Tan to be able to play a Fazioli piano brought in especially for him to play!
One of the highlights of last evening though, was the composition that Roy Tan made through taking requests from the audience. He asked us to provide him with the names of 5 or 6 songs, from which he would put together an original musical composition. Roy polled the audience and the songs that he gathered were: ‘Hallelujah’, ‘Amazing Grace’, ‘Let it Be’, ‘Lara’s Theme’, and ‘A Time for Us’. Roy was able to immediately sit down at the piano and play a 5 minute arrangement of these 5 songs, woven together and interspersed throughout the 5 minutes arrangement. Absolutely brilliant! I play piano and yet I’ve never seen anyone poll an audience before and immediately be able to sit down at the piano and play something that could have been recorded and published immediately on iTunes! WOW! Amazing!!! Viking really has impressed us with the calibre of the performers on the ship so far and we are only 2 weeks into a 4+month long cruise! Bravo to Mr. Roy Tan from Canada whose 2 performance on the piano on the Neptune were outstanding!
Our team had another busy day today working on our snowman. I think we are finally finished now. The judging will be the day after tomorrow on January 6th, so we wanted to be done today, as tomorrow will be our big day off the ship for excursions in Cabo San Lucas!
We listened to the Cabo San Lucas port talk on our stateroom tv, while I was blogging. Cabo is a tender port and since we are on an independent excursion (golfing) we really need to be on one of the first tenders off the ship, to be able to make our tee time. We are told the tender actually takes 20 minutes to get to the port from the Neptune. This is where I leave things with Richard and he figures things out for us on how to get us off the ship, to our transfer and to Cabo Real Golf Club. I’ve never been on a tender ship before! I see the tenders hanging off the Neptune, but I’ve not been in a tender before to understand how many people they can hold. Tomorrow will definitely be another day of FIRSTS for me as we get off the ship in Cabo San Lucas, and I really am looking forward to my first round of golf in 2023!
I hope my friend in Canada enjoyed today’s bog about this fun story of Roy Tan and his experiences playing a Fazioli piano in Italy. Imagine what a treat it would be to be able to hammer out a tune on a Fazioli!