News for the week of March 11

Join the Friends of the Opera on a trip to the Lyric Opera in Chicago

Sunday, March 18, 2018 join the FOTO to see the 2pm matinee performance of Gounod's Faust. 

  • Travel to and from Chicago by comfortable Motor Coach
  • Departing 9:30 am, sharp, and returning 10:30 pm, approximate
  • Conveniently meeting at the Jenison Meijer, 550 Baldwin St, Jenison, MI 49428
  • Dine in one of several Lyric restaurants
  • Enjoy excellent, first balcony seats for the performance
  • Price: FOTO Members:  $150 adult/$75 student; non Member: $175 adult / $100 studentPrice includes your ticket to the performance and round-trip bus fare.

"An Opera Worth Your Soul" is the title of Barrymore L. Scherer's "Masterpiece" column about Gounod's "Faust" in the March 3-4, 2018 Wall Street Journal. After describing passages of "tender melodies"  and "magical interplay of voice and instruments", and how "Gounod's soaring theme returns in the full orchestra", he writes, "It is the opulent melodic warmth and color of this music--together with extroverted numbers like the Kermesse waltz, the soldiers' chorus, and the impassioned final trio--that have enabled "Faust" to endure after a century and a half. " A must see, must hear opera.

Act Now – Seating is limited! Reserve your seat today and arrange payment by contacting Peggy Barber at 231-740-8200, or email:

Our next book club selection for March 20 at Schuler's was is Billie, a story about a unique friendship between two young people. The book was the  number one best seller in France by French author Anna Gavalda.  For more information please contact Marijke Wiersema.

How well do you know Paris? Today we look at the 11th arrondissement.

1. Whose memory doe the metro station Richard-Lenoir evoke?

A. A deputy Lenoir, whose first name was Richard.
B. Two associates, M. Richard and M. Lenoir.
C. A certain Richard, an artist, nicknamed "le Noir" (the black).

2. Any Parisian can, under certain circumstances, join the Association of Winegrowers of Paris. What are the required conditions?

A. To have at least one vine and live in Paris.
B. To successfully pass an enology exam.
C. To prove ownership of a wine cellar anywhere in France.

3. To what 19th century writer do we owe the novel Paris in the 20th Century?

A. Honoré de Balzac
B. Jules Verne.
C. Alexandre Dumas.

4. What curiosity can be seen on the interior of the église Sainte-Marguerite, on the rue de la Roquette?

A. A chapel painted entirely as a trompe-l'oeil.
B. A group of contemporary stained glass windows.
C. A wax statue of a reclining Sainte-Marguerite.

5. At the intersection of rue de la Roquette and rue de la Croix-Faubin you might notice five paving stones set in the asphalt. What are they?

A. Vestiges of Thiers's fortifications.
B. Foundation slabs which supported the guillotine.
C. Stones from the north tower of the old Bastille prison.

Answers to last week's quiz on the 10th arrondissement: 1. B, Éventaillistes who collaborate with artists to care for the "residents" of the musée de l'Éventail at 2 boulevard Strasbourg; 2. B, 9 locks climbing 25m over 4 km between the Seine and La Villette pond; 3. B, the infamous Montfaucon gallows stood not from the lock; 4. A, 1.2m wide and 5m tall; 5. B gare de l'Est. 

Travel in France: The left Bank in Paris