Since Meeks started a few of us on doing posts of a musical bent in the last few days I have been tempted to do them for the rest of the week!
I will restrain myself from subjecting you to more of those 80’s hits I love (for now, anyway….. 😉 ) and revert back to my usual historic newspaper format of blogging. I will still be doing a music post though, this time it is something that is quite the antidote to the types of music I have posted so far!
Dame Nellie Melba was a world-renowned opera singer in the late 1800’s and one of her homes, Coombe Cottage, is in a nearby town.
Until I read this biography I didn’t realize what an interesting life she led.
I was very interested to find this photo of Dame Nellie Melba helping out at a BBQ for the students of the Conservatorium of Music at that very same Coombe Cottage in 1927. Hard to imagine an operatic diva wielding the barbie tongs, isn’t it?
In fact, if you have ever driven from Lilydale to Yarra Glen or Healesville you have driven right past its neatly clipped, high hedges on the corner of Maroondah Highway and the Melba Highway (named in her honour).
I imagine that Coldstream, where Coombe Cottage is located, was considered to be far out in the country back in those days. I wonder what led her to buy that particular property?
Just to help bring Dame Nellie Melba to life my music video contribution is this interesting collection of clips from her life to the accompaniment of Melba singing Swing Low, Sweet Chariot (and ended by one of her speeches). I suspect (and hope) that the part when she is dancing with the cockatoo was filmed at Coombe Cottage.