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Monday, April 21, 2014
Aix en Provence, France

Interested in a Music and Markets Tour? We’d love to hear from you!  Join us on a summer tour on the Amalfi Coast, in Provence, or in Amsterdam/Belgium

We’re off to the rolling hills and perched villages of the Luberon today, and make a quick photo stop in Lourmarin, where the tour buses are already rolling into town,

and another pause before passing Bonnieux.

We’re on our way to rosy Roussillon, a stunner for those who are seeing it for the first time, and a well-loved favorite for us who return time and again. All three of these lovelies are officially designated ” Most Beautiful Villages of France” – no wonder!

Taking our time,

we pause for photo after photo,

relishing the ochre hues.

Jill chose a perfect outfit for this town, didn’t she?!

We’ve left plenty of time for a leisurely lunch at L’ Arome in Bonnieux, recommended by our friends the Woods, whom we joined last spring on one of their Luberon Experience days.
Each dish is as beautiful as it is delicious, from this salmon tartare,

to my fork-tender lamb, the best I’ve ever had!

Ruth comments, not for the first time (she and Sam are on their third Music and Markets tour, and Jills on her sixth!), that we really should call our tours Music and Marvelous Meals rather than Music and Markets – what do you think?
Back to Aix, where we gather at Bar Teddy atop the Grand Theatre for a light apero (yes, it has been a few hours since lunch!)

and share the program notes that Stephen Ackert, Music Director of the National Gallery of Art, generously prepared for us.

Tonight’s eagerly anticipated concert, Yo-Yo Ma and Kathryn Stott, is even better than imagined. Delphine, our contact at the Easter Festival, with whom we met with in November as we planned the tour, chose wonderful seats for us – we’re in the center, fifth row, and feel like the duo are playing right to us! The program is delightful, taking us around the world via Stravinsky, Villa-Lobos, Piazzolla, de Falla and Brahms, and they respond to the thunderous ovations with several fabulous encoresan unforgettable night of music!