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Sierre (CH), Chateau Mercier, The Other Way Around - Oliver Schnyder & Lia Pale

I decided to fly to Switzerland a couple of days before our concert in Sierre. Oliver was playing in Ernen/CH, a beautiful little town that‘s filled with music and it is just one hour away from Sierre. Also it was time to meet dear friends that I haven‘t seen for a long time. So I wrote to Madeleine Hirsiger (I‘m sure you know her from Swiss TV : ) ) if I could take her up on her offer that I could stay with her and half an hour later she replied with a loud yes : )! So I took the plane from Vienna and trains from Zürich that led me up to Ernen where I got just in time for Oliver‘s concert at night, where he played Schubert‘s Impromptu op.90 Nr4 and Franz Liszt‘s Années de Péleringe. It was incredible! Francesco Walter, the creative director of the Festival „Musikdorf Ernen“ created a colourful and open-minded festival that fills the whole town with music during the summer and in the cycle „Klavier Kompakt“ Oliver played five concerts in three days and I could listen to three of them - oh yes : ) - what an inspiring music marathon. Thank you O! It was such an honour and pleasure to spent these days in Ernen getting to know old friends better and meeting new ones. And maybe, if I‘m lucky enough, I get to play at this festival in 2021...we'll see : ), I keep you posted!

On Monday Oliver and I drove to my beloved Sierre and we made a stop at Eggishorn. We took the ropeway all the way up to the...ALETSCH-glacier!!! I couldn‘t believe my eyes...the beauty and power that this white giant spreads is indescribable – a deeply humbling but also alarming experience – 20 years ago there used to be 40km of thick ice and now it melted back to 23km...there is no way to deny this change and I think it is our responsibility to at the least change what we can in our every-day-life like stop buying plastic bottles, taking trains instead of planes and cars, reduce meat consumption and buy only local and organic food. Seeing the glacier in front of me reminded me that everyone of us is responsible.

The first night in Sierre Oliver and I stayed at my beloved Villa Ruffieux (thank you O for sleeping in the ghost room : ) ) Oh how much I love this place – it was such a special and inspiring time I spent there last summer and I couldn‘t wait to share the music with the people who became so dear to me during this time. The Chateau Mercier is incredibly beautiful and I would like to thank René-Pierre for giving me the chance to come back to this unique place and play with Oliver inside this magical castle. We played the beautiful ballads that mathias rüegg arranged for us like „Angel Eyes“, „You must believe in spring“ or the worldfamous Moonriver : ) in a very intimate setting. And I enjoyed every minute of it. What a pleasure to play with you Oliver!!! Thank you to my dear Anne-Do, Maurice, Anais, René-Pierre for coming and sharing this evening with me. You all know and saw how moved I was : ) so I‘m not gonna say anything more except that this will always be a place where I will come back to!

Sincerely, yours Lia!

P.S.: On our way back to Zürich I started my Podcast „Palepool“ with Oliver Schnyder as my first guest : ) - it will be online soon - stay tuned!

P.P.S.: Check out Madeleine's blog about Oliver's concert in Ernen:

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