MEET ANDREW OLIVER
Andrew lives in Paphos with his wife Christiane and frequently travels extensively to attend musical concerts across Europe. He is the President of Paphos Music Lovers Association which promotes music of all genres and arranges concerts across the region. A professional musician himself, he has played the piano from a young age.
Where are you spending isolation and with who? Any pets?
I am at home with my wife Christiane in Kissonerga in Paphos. We don’t have any pets but we do like a cat who follows us on our walks.
How are you coping with isolation? How are you staying busy?
We are walking everyday in our neighbourhood and I am keeping busy still promoting Paphos Music Lovers. Christiane is sewing a lot and reading several books. We normally eat out a lot but are now enjoying cooking at home.
What is the current status of your organisation?
Due to the current circumstances, we have had to cancel all the planned concerts. We have also decided to cancel all planning for future shows as we just do not know when things will get back to normal. None of us know.
Do you have anything you would like to promote?
We have for the time being moved everything online. As and when we get the all-clear we will be able to rearrange the live concerts very quickly. Now we are keeping in touch with our audience via our Facebook page and website – www.paphosmusiclovers.com
I am also sending out a weekly newsletter via email to give our audience musical suggestions to listen to and enjoy. We are getting more replies to these emails than ever before and significant interaction through our Facebook page and website. This week I suggested the Met Opera online who are showing free videos which would typically be only available in a cinema setting. There are so many ways that people join together and create music without actually meeting. I am also promoting local musicians in Cyprus who are coming together to create music with no physical contact between them. Further details on our website.
Do you have a message/advice for other business owners?
Stay positive and keep going. I think my best advice would be to adapt your business to current circumstances. Keep connecting with your followers.
What is positive about being in isolation?
One of the greatest joys has been rediscovering cooking at home and having the time to do it. For us, it is a luxury to eat in. Another positive is having time to enjoy each other’s company. We have a lot more time to talk. My wife is also regularly phoning and emailing her kids and her single friends to support them through isolation.
What is negative about being in isolation?
I am already really missing live concerts. I don’t own a single CD as the only way I enjoy music is as a live performance. It is hard as they have been a part of my life throughout.
Are you cooking and if so, share your favourite dish?
As mentioned, we are cooking a lot. Every lunch, we are having a salad but trying to make a different combination every day. In the evening, Christiane is working her way through a vegetarian cookbook. My favourite at the moment is a Butternut Squash Soup.
What have you been watching to pass the time? Can you recommend any films/series?
Generally, I only watch the news. But now I am enjoying watching online operas. I am watching at the moment the Elixir of Love Opera by the Vienna State Opera.
What have you been listening to in terms of music? Can you recommend an album?
I don’t have any albums or a playlist, so I have been listening online. The Cyprus Symphony Orchestra has a YouTube channel which is updated all the time. I love listening to Mozart as it is very uplifting.
When things get back to normal, what are you looking forward to the most?
I think you know the answer – Live Concerts. I look forward to attending the first performance that Technopolis 20 in Paphos puts on once everything is back to normal. Then we will all know we are through it!