Cher Public

Provocative ad provokes, surprisingly

“But not everyone is amused. On Twitter, SarahDuggers asked: ‘Is it really po-faced and prudish to find these billboards really vulgar and not very nice?’ …. Vivienne Pattison, director of Mediawatch-UK, said the ad was clever in itself but contributed to the hyper-sexualisation of society.” [Evening Standard]

  • The Vicar of John Wakefield

    That fine artist Margaret Ritchie would never have consented to appear under such circumstances.

  • Clita del Toro

    Well, if they had spelled it “cumming” soon, it would be better!

    • Really?

      • Camille

        Did anyone see his Macbeth at the Lincoln Center Festival this past summer?

        I would have liked to have attended but was not around at the time.

        Just curious. Wonder if he wore his cologne?

      • ianw2

        Apparently he also wanted to do a shampoo range called Cumming In Your Hair but the fragrance didn’t sell.

        • manou

          I thought it was a hair gel.

      • Rory Williams

        LOL @ Manou’s Something About Mary shout-out, but … I actually would argue that Cumming was one of the best frags of the era, and would be a classic (instead of, I think, discontinued) if he or, more likely, CB had only resisted and named it something like “Uncle Angus’s Library” or “Roadside Breakdown.” And the spoofy ad campaign, wondrous as it was frag-image-wise, didn’t help. Yes, I’m stuck on vintage, but whenever I wear it people say, “What is that?” Well, OK, sometimes they say, “This is weird, but do you smell burning tires?” But who wants to wear a frag everyone gets? Clearly not Alan C. Or me!

  • Orlando Furioso

    Some of us decline to use that spelling under any circumstances. (For one thing, how does one spell the past tense?)

    But anyway: SarahDuggers might have gained more respect for a dissenting viewpoint had she been able to find more focused wording than “not very nice.”

    • oedipe

      To cum/ he has cum/ he cum, of course! Kids may prefer he cummed, though.

      • Clita del Toro

        oedipe LOL!

      • He saw, he conquered, he came

    • Mozart is icumen in.

      • Camille

        no, m., that’s summer.

        and now it’s a goin’ out.

        how were the Taipei bars?

        • Llhude sing “Camille!”

          Perhaps you’d prefer Pound:

          Winter is icumen in,
          Llhude sing Goddamn.

          Can’t say much about/for the bars, but the opera in Taipei is plentiful and cheap. Opera in mainland China is cheap, too, by American and European standards, but the tickets are often too expensive for many folks. This is not a problem around here: the most expensive shows have tickets price that top out at sixty dollars and it is precisely those shows that most appeal to the young (15-30), mostly female crowd. Free outdoor temple operas are staged a number of times a week at various points in the city. Troupes from mainland China visit every month or two. The Chiang Kai Shek memorial hall has shows 5 times a week -- with English subtitles. Two other stages, one in the older part of the city, one in the more distant Wenshan/Muzha neighborhood offer complementary programs of local, Beijing and Kun operas. Ticket prices for those shows generally top out at fifteen dollars.

    • armerjacquino

      Orlando, ‘not very nice’ is being used more as a figure of speech here. It’s a very old-fashioned English usage and it’s hard to pin down the exact nuance but she’s definitely using it as a three word phrase rather than suffering from a vocabulary blockage.

  • DonCarloFanatic

    Certain Brits are still consumed with appearing to be posh. Which means, acting the lady or gent.

    Of course the idea that Don Giovanni bothered with contraception is a joke. He evidently wasn’t worried about “the pox,” either, although come to think of it, we do know that his favorite was the “young beginner.”

    • MontyNostry

      The greatest irony is that Don G doesn’t even get anywhere near to coming in the course of the whole opera.

  • aulus agerius

    If one goes to DG expecting tittilating sensuality, disappointment ensues I’m afraid, as far as Mozart and DePonte are concerned. To me it seems mostly about power. Big surprise. The ad is a joke and misleading….par for the course.

    • RosinaLeckermaul

      I can’t believe they’re trotting out that godawful Rufus Norris production of DG with the Don in drag to seduce Donna Anna, among other silly notions. It’s one of the many recent ENO disasters. The production is even more tasteless than that billboard.

      • MontyNostry

        Apparently the new Giulio Cesare is a disaster too. Maybe it’s time for a change of management …

        • Often admonished

          Do not worry. John Berry can’t wait to jump ship -- as soon as something opens up close to his good friend Peter Gelb. Maybe Billingshurst will help the guy out?

  • papopera

    How very clever! 5 stars * * * * *
    Unlikely that the Don would ever have practiced coitus interruptus or used bowel guts.

  • Edward George

    Two days ago, ENO announced its “Undress for the Opera” initiative to help increase the number of under-44s in its audience. For one performance of Don Giovanni, seats are reduced to a more affordable £25. It’s a pity they didn’t mention this on the poster as both seem to be appealing to a fresh opera market.

    Shortening the web address to DONG fits in quite nicely, though.

    • MontyNostry

      I saw that condom poster splattered all over Waterloo station the other day. I dread to think how much that site costs. It’ll be interesting to see if the shock tactics generate any extra bums (as opposed to other bits) on seats.

      • ianw2

        I don’t think ‘the kids today’ are gonna be that shocked by an open condom wrapper that they’re going to fork out an opera ticket.

        • MontyNostry

          You’re right. ENO is a bit ‘trendy vicar’ (as opposed to our non-trendy Vicar John).

  • Edward George

    It could be worth going to see the alternative ending imposed on the production as the Don is transported to the plains of Saharan Africa. Apparently “Fiery demons drag him down to Hell, and the remaining protagonists are left to moralise: sinners get their just deserts.”

    • MontyNostry

      Fantastic, EG. The standards of arts copywriting are pretty poor generally.

    • Regina delle fate

      Hehe -- the characters in the godawful Giulio Cesare get their “just deserts” by the look of the set. Plus a dead crocodile, disembowelled by Cleopatra to steal it’s eggs, and a headless giraffe.

  • Euphemism.

    • derschatzgabber

      Brava La Cieca! It took me a few seconds to catch the euphemism. A post like this one makes me wish we had “like” icons to click. For a euphemism, the last minute or so is pretty R rated.

    • MontyNostry

      Quel esprit épistolaire!

    • phoenix

      That Werther DVD from Wien has turned off everyone I know around here -- sad to see a Garanca trying so hard for nothing.
      -- May I add a creeky, aged but more entertaining euphemism?

  • A. Poggia Turra

    Just a reminder that the Harteros VLL is now on-demand at Arte Live Web. US listeners should be able to access without a proxy:

    • louannd

      Thanks APT -- no proxy needed for this one.

    • Buster

      Just stunning. No one sings them better.

      Mariss Jansons was supposed to conduct her VLL with the Concertgebouw Orchestra next week, but he is ill. We now get Alexandre Bloch, of whom I have never heard.

      • oedipe

        The irony of it is that, at Pleyel, Harteros replaced Malin Byström, who had cancelled! This reminds me of another chronic canceller who occasionally jumps in for someone else and saves the day…

      • MontyNostry

        I found this recording of the VLL with Price and Sawallisch the other day. Quite a combo.

        • Buster

          Very beautiful.

          Margaret Price sang from a score on both occasions I heard her live -- I found that very odd. She hid it in the grand piano for her Lieder recital, but for the Four Last Songs, she held it, and, at that stage of her career, needed glasses to read it.

          • armerjacquino

            There’s a live Price VLL under Previn where she comes spectacularly to grief in FRUHLING. At one point it sounds for all the world as if she’s singing it backwards. Maybe she adopted the score from then on!

          • Buster

            Was that the version you included in your quizz? Did not recognize the voice at all there.

  • tannengrin

    I wonder if they are going to update the production and make the Act 1 finale a la “Harry in Vegas”.

  • adina

    Makes Renee’s LOC Doctor Opera ads look downright ingenious.

  • echoshi

    This is actually one of better ones…