Marta Istomin left last weekend on a whirlwind tour of Europe that will range from Barcelona (for a meeting of the Pablo Casals Foundation) to Bucharest, where she has been invited by the Romanian government to audition various chamber music, orchestra, opera and dance performances. In between, the artistic director of the Kennedy Center will catch concerts of the National Symphony Orchestra in London and Paris.

The trip to Romania may result in a visit to the Kennedy Center by the Romanian National Opera Company, but nothing has been settled yet.

"It is so difficult nowadays to bring in anything," says Istomin, "not because it isn't there but because of the cost. I am also thinking about the Finnish Opera, but I don't know whether I can make it on this trip. There are so many things I have to come back for."

Also on the agenda are several brief encounters with her husband and fellow member of the jet set, pianist Eugene Istomin. "I will hear him play in Barcelona and London and we will both be in Paris for the NSO luncheon at the American Embassy," she says. "We will be together three days in the two weeks. After that, he goes on to Italy and Dublin and other places, and I get back to work."