I wrote this for my Dad. It reminds me of him, and the
way he used to tinker at the piano which he couldn't
really play, improvising simple tunes based on the
plainchant and canticles that for fifty years was such
a part of his life singing in the cathedrals of Dublin.
His strong, old (in my memory), gnarled hands would
wring out idiomatic themes reminiscent of stately
times, but always with an odd quirky twist within it.
He was quite the victorian figure, yet beneath a very
thin veneer he often displayed a mischievous sense of
humour. Dad had a very good bass/baritone voice and,
apart from his choral duties beneath the spires, he
performed roles on the opera stage. He really enjoyed
playing the villain or assassin such as Sparafucile in
Rigoletto, but his real love was for the 'buffo' roles,
and his interpretation of Dr. Bartolo in the Barber of
Seville was reputed to be hilarious. Although I never
saw him performing I can very well imagine it.