I promised big news, and here it is: On Friday morning -- actually, about seven hours from now, weather permitting [knocks wood] -- I'll be flying to Beijing. And on Monday, I'll hook up with the New York Philharmonic for a trip I could never have conceived of taking: I'm heading to Pyongyang, North Korea, to report on the orchestra's historic visit and concert.
I can't fully anticipate what kind of access I'll have to the Internet during my trip -- and honestly, that fact is in itself part of the story. Ideally I'll be filing on-the-scene reports for the TONY Blog and also on the League of American Orchestras website. Eventually I'll write about the entire experience for Symphony magazine.
The amount of extra work I've had to put in over the last few weeks in order to prepare for this trip has left me drained and slightly delirious. Strangely, that feels somewhat appropriate as I contemplate visiting a place I never even imagined getting to see firsthand. The fierce debate that has surrounded the Philharmonic's visit has only added to the surreality of knowing that if all goes as planned, I'm actually going to be a witness.
Wish me luck. And keep an eye on those websites.