Monthly Archives: August 2013

Happy Birthday Ken!

Happy Birthday Ken!

Birthday Boy Ken with his best friend, ZiZi and new toy

Ken’s birthday was a week ago today and we finally got around to celebrating it tonight with the family.  With this past week being devoted to multiple performance of The Ring, this really was the best time to celebrate his birthday along with other family members celebrating summer birthdays, son Sean Hatch, daughter Katie Laramore, and grandson Andrew Hatch.  

Our dear friends, Patty & Jimmy Barrier had taken us to lunch at Purple on his

actual birthday and one of his gifts was a dog toy for ZiZi which both Ken and ZiZi were excited to receive! 

Today Ken’s oldest son, Sean Hatch along with partner, Troy Clark and Ken’s youngest son, MIchael Hatch along with wife Alicia and three sons, Jackson, Spencer and Andrew, my daughter Katie Laramore along with her husband Kevin and three children Cutter, Bode and Campbell and friends Patty & Jimmy

Jackson, Andrew and Spencer Hatch

Katie, Campbell, Bode, Kevin and Cutter Laramore

Barrier joined in the celebration.

Troy brought a delicious potato salad, Alicia brought a yummy baked fennel dish and baked beans, Katie brought guacamole and Patty brought lemon bars.  Ken and I filled in the rest of the menu with gazpacho with lime creme fraiche, barbecued chicken and salmon, watermelon arugula salad, corn on the cob and a fresh nectarine crisp with vanilla ice cream.

Jackson, Spencer and Andrew had a great time playing in the swimming pool before dinner.  Cutter and Bode arrived late and didn’t get to swim, but Bode and Andrew had a great time playing together with a water toy and getting wet anyway.  The saddest part was that I got to hold baby Campbell for only about 5 minutes because I was so busy with the food, but GiGi (aka Patty) did get a chance to cuddle her for a while before dinner.

Campbell Laramore with Gigi (Patty)
Jimmy Barrier, Ken Hatch, Troy Clark, Sean Hatch

Andrew Hatch and Bode Laramore

The boys all got dressed before dinner but when dinner was over, while everybody else helped clear the table after dinner, Jackson “accidentally” fell in the pool and pretty soon, Spencer “accidentally” jumped in too!  At the end of the evening, we had to send two naked boys home wrapped in beach towels.  Another adventure at Grumpa’s house! 

Happy Birthday Ken, Sean, Katie and Andrew!  And of course Campbell too!

The Magical Ring

The Magical Ring

Cathi Hatch and Susan Neumann

Last night was the final performance in the marathon week with my dear friend Susan Neumann of attending Richard Wagner’s The Ring Cycle produced by Seattle Opera at McCaw Hall.  This only comes around in Seattle every four years.  Seventeen incredible hours of opera and four hours of pre-performance lectures . . . what a magical experience!

We saw dragons and giants and dwarfs and gods and mermaids, and at least as important, if not more important, were entertained with some of the most exquisite

music ever written and performed.  Susan and I had prepared in advance by listening to 24 CD’s about the life and works of Richard Wagner.  It turns out that he wasn’t a very nice person, strongly anti-Semitic and completely self-centered, but the music he wrote is soul-stirring and thrilling to hear.

The final performance in the series of four last evening was Gotterdammerung aka The Twilight of the Gods.  And fortunately for those of us attending, we had the opportunity to hear and see for the second evening in the series the Brunnhilde understudy, Lori Phillips, who was truly magnificent!  Allwyn Mellor, the original artist scheduled to sing contracted a virus so was unable to perform.  Everyone in the audience, the critics, and the rest of the cast were swept up in the excitement of her amazing performances.  As General Director, Speight Jenkins announced her substitution again last night, the audience applauded and cheered loudly with anticipation to hear her again.  During curtain calls on both evenings, she was hugged and kissed by not only the artists playing Wotan and Seigfried, but also by Director Stephen Wadsworth, Orchestra Conductor Asher Fisch, Speight Jenkins, and assorted Norns, Valkyries, and Dwarfs.    

I must also comment on the incredible tenor, Stefan Vinke, who played the role of Seigfried.  His voice was so powerful and his acting skills made him totally believable, charming and funny in the role of boy awakening to manhood.  He nailed the unaccompanied high C note in Gotterdammerung in the scene with the Rhine Maidens, which is often the nemesis of tenors singing the Seigfried role.

There are still two more Ring Cycles in the next couple of weeks so if you can beg, borrow or steal a ticket, I can’t recommend it more highly.

Bruce Lee Action Museum Dinner

Bruce Lee Action Museum Dinner

Christine & Omar Lee, Linda Lee, Cathi Hatch

As guests of Ani & Brendan O’Farrell, Ken and I attended a many course Chinese dinner fundraiser at the Imperial Garden Seafood restaurant at the Great Wall Mall this week.  The dinner was hosted by Omar & Christine Lee at their restaurant in conjunction with a Hong Kong Association of Washington fundraiser for the to be developed Bruce Lee Action Museum.

Andy Yip, President of the Hong Kong Association of Washington greeted the

Brendan & Ani O’Farrell with Andy Yip

guests as they arrived and introduced them to the guest of honor, Linda Lee, the widow of Bruce Lee .  She talked about the scholarships that are currently given in Bruce Lee’s name to underprivileged children of all ethnic backgrounds. Because Bruce Lee was the first crossover Chinese actor that really made it big, he has been a huge role model over the years especially to Chinese children and adults.

Ken and I didn’t realize how important Bruce Lee and his memory is to the Chinese culture and it was fun to watch as all of the highly successful Chinese CEOs couldn’t wait to have their photo taken with Linda Lee.  Of course, I decided I needed mine taken with her as well.  Sitting at our table was a man named Perry Lee, who has the distinction of

Charlene Lee, Cathi Hatch, Jerry Lee

being the largest collector of Bruce Lee memorabilia.  The gift to the guests for the evening was a boxed set of Bruce Lee movies, a signed photograph and a black “Walk On” wrist band.  It has been many years since I have seen a Bruce Lee movie so Ken and I look forward to watching a few.

The food was amazing and course after course was brought to our table.  The most spectacular course was whole Dungeness crabs and crab legs that had been deep-fried in some kind of a light

Ken & Cathi Hatch with Chris Upchurch

batter and LOTS of garlic.  Messy but absolutely delicious!

Other celebrants included Charlene & Jerry Lee, Gordon Tang, Thea & Chris Upchurch, Benjamin Lee and a number of Chinese CEO’s in town for a visit.  The remarks were all conveyed in both English and Mandarin Chinese.

It was a fascinating evening.  Thank you Brendan & Ani! As Bruce Lee would say, “Walk On”!