Cher Public

It was a blind item

Though his life is blessed with joy and full of hope, which artist could spare only 20 minutes to sign autographs before shouting “I’m done” and stomping away from a queue of disappointed fans?

  • Who is dating or married to someone named Esperanza?

  • filsdesparias

    “Alla vita che t’arride
    Di speranze e gaudio piena”

    • Aaaaaaah, Dima.

      • Vergin Vezzosa

        Perhaps he was experiencing the onset of a digestive affliction like the one that caused La Gheorghiu to flee her first SF Tosca after the first act. Something of a similar ailment has been going around NY lately.

        If not, he is in direct contrast to JDD and Nicole Caball who were both beyond lovely, gracious and patient at a similar post- Capuletti matinee public event in the lobby of the War Memorial in October.

        • oedipe

          Well, just to prevent unwarranted amalgams, he is also in direct contrast with Gheorghiu, who has a seemingly infinite patience with fans, including apparently the very numerous ones at the War Memorial.

          • Vergin Vezzosa

            Oedipe is entirely and wryly correct.

        • Methinks it is caused by Gary Lehman’s leftover oysters…which first appeared in the film “Osmosis Jones.”

  • Quanto Painy Fakor

    Blind item? I get it:

  • Quanto Painy Fakor

    Another blind item from Lebrecht a few days ago:
    “November 26, 2012 … In the past week, two conductors were escorted off the premises at major institutions after arriving for rehearsal in no fit state to work.
    One was a guest at a major orchestra, the other a staff member of an opera company. I am not going to mention names or identify the ensembles….” Who can they be?

    • Donna Anna

      Wonder if one is Paavo Jarvi. While he was conductor of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, he was stopped and charged with DUI, and it wasn’t the first time.

    • Nerva Nelli

      Bachelor #2: think Chicago, think choruses…

  • manou

    Twenty minutes is not bad -- and his job is singing, not signing.

    • messa di voce

      Especially when the first nineteen minutes was spent with Lois.

    • DonCarloFanatic

      In casual signing settings, especially after a taxing performance, I would agree with you. But in an advertised event? Close to an hour would be expected.

      • Quanto Painy Fakor

        Yes, it was an announced event, but maybe he was uncomfortable and didn’t want to be in close contact with strangers sneezing all around him ?

  • After a blind item, one that may make you wish you were deaf.

    • Quanto Painy Fakor

      So great to have this vintage Cindy Lauper Semiramide video!

      • Buster

        Or is it Lene Lovich?

    • Ilka Saro

      My my. How very queenly.

    • armerjacquino

      Is she genuinely, you know, mad?

      • I know for a fact she is, from several people who studied with her back in Leipzig (or Berlin).

      • When I warily drop the Kermes name it always has the effect of a bomb. German singers who actually know her make all sorts of grimaces as if there was a bad odor. “Oh, KERMES, but she’s a lunatic, you know”.

    • 98rsd

      Can I start my day over?

      • spiderman

        oh dear, how ghastly!

        • Clita del Toro

          What a beast!

    • I think the best of the this video is the tribute she pays to Dame Joan with her ornamentation at 5:26. Though I would liked to have seen Dame Joan execute that whilst bopping up and down.

      • Quanto Painy Fakor

        You are very correct in that observation. That wonderful variant is one that Bonynge composed for Joan. I find it better than any of the other unearthed cadenzas for Bel raggio that stem from ancient divas. Kermes is soo kewl! I love the fact that she might be a bonafide lunatic, but I suspec that she’s just thinking something like if Cathy Berberian and La Bartoli can get away with things like this, I’ll have a bash at it too.

        • Quanto Painy Fakor

    • Bianca Castafiore

      Well, Nerva taught her well…

    • almavivante

      Thank you, doyenne, for posting this. I enjoyed it for all the wrong reasons. Her facial expressions remind me of Maria the Mad Robotrix in Metropolis!Still, you must admit that there’s a real voice there, even if the ornamentation is truly tasteless, especially when she goes for those Mado Robin-style notes at the end and at 5:26 which Kashania called attention to. I can’t say I was bored. Great party video.

      • almavivante

        PS: And whoever the conductor is (and he’s cute), he looks highly amused, too.

        • Quanto Painy Fakor

          Even though I thought the conductor of the Semiramide was Veronesi, I’m guessing it was Ion Marin instead.

      • Clita del Toro

        There is a real voice there, but she does not know how to use it and apparently doesn’t care. I don’t find her amusing at all-- annoying would be the word.

        • almavivante

          Okay, you’re entitled not to be amused. Chacun a Clita’s gout. And apropos QPF’s comment above, I believe Bartoli did do a fair amount of jiggling up and down when I saw her sing this in concert (many, many years ago).

          • Clita del Toro

            Anyway, Alma, I agree, the conductor is cute. I am not in a good mood this morning--bad dreams. If I were in another mood, I might find her funny. ;+(

          • Camille

            Neither am I in a good mood, in spite of a good sleep. Blame it on yesterday’s lunar penumbral eclipse.

            It is only 2:00 pm and am already ready for a Vermouth Cassis!

            Bottoms up, Darling!


            LaDonna Traviata

          • Clita del Toro

            Cammiest, maybe it iwas the moon--should I put on my Salome outfit and have a Vermouth Cassis?
            We will have fun tonight with Aida. Hope you will be at the chat.


          • Camille

            Ask Herodoas, Clitissima—

            “The moon is the moon”!

            Put on your Amneris outfit instead, and I shall don my Aïda serpent’s bracelets, and I shall

            C U later, alligator!!!

          • Bianca Castafiore

            Cammillissima, it’s the three of us then. No news of the Captain for weeks now. I must go take a walk in my rose garden with Irma now to clear my head. Per che tarda la luna?

        • I think she is absolutely horrid in every possible way, and shame about the good instrument.

    • louannd

      Another clown school wanna-be.

  • Marcello

    Simone Kermes at the Berlin AIDS Gala?

  • Bianca Castafiore

    Who is Esperanza?

    And have we figured out from the previous blind item that Ildar is taking up with Frittoli?

    • armerjacquino

      Esperanza isn’t anyone- the ‘hope’ reference is explained above.

      I’d like to know about the partner-swap blind item, too!

      • Bianca Castafiore

        Esperanza is a woman’s name… I thought it might be his wife’s name.

    • Camille

      Is he???

      Yes, what is the answer to that question?
      Enquiring minds want to know!

      How could he leave Olga after all those kiss??!!

      • Camille

        Kids!!! The result of kisses, I meant.

    • Porgy Amor

      This did not occur to me immediately when I read that guess (which seemed astute, given the clues). But if the item about the two couples was about Frittoli, Borodina, and Abdrazakov, then it involved three of four soloists on the Chicago Verdi Requiem recording conducted by Muti.

      I thought at the time that I knew exactly which of the principal artists on that recording were sleeping together, and this was a combination not on my radar. It must be the sexiest Verdi Requiem ever. Ingemisco tamquam reus, culpa rubet vultus meus!

  • Cocky Kurwenal

    He’s talking about the tenor though isn’t he, in that aria? Hence Alvarez is the answer.

    • armerjacquino

      It is the baritone’s aria though- and the tweet that’s linked to upthread makes it clear that it was Hvoro and Rad at the signing, not Alvarez.

  • Bianca Castafiore

    Speaking of awful, I had to go check out La Michael:

    This is just amazingly bad… but as awful as it is, I recall Gruber’s last Aidas at the Met, even worse in the utter lack of voice and roundness of tone… In contrast that evening, Botha sang sweetly and Borodina wiped the floors with her… Was anyone else there?

    • You have to admit: having the Eye of Sauron behind her explains a lot.

    • Clita del Toro

      Bianca: I don’t now where the bitch gets the nerve to sing like that in public.

    • la vociaccia

      Bianca, this vissi d’arte reads like a how-to-not-sing manual. “ad anima………..(breath)…….viva.” Also the ending, “perche me rimune… (pause)….ehhhhh”

      Still, nothing compares to this catastrophe:

      I’d detail every pitch error but there are too many. sometimes she’s not even within a fourth of the actual note

      • Bianca Castafiore

        vociaccia, not to mention she and the conductor are not together in thid… but then I’m not sure that’s only her fault… I’m shocked how she cannot sustain a nice, full, rounded tone (as per her last phrase…).

    • I had this entire video downloaded and had to delete it, I would not listen to it. I do think the production is quite interesting and the sexy bear singing Scarpia can come arrest me any time, I guarantee you he will be the one ending with the handcuffs at the end.

  • belcantomaniac

    These videos of Simone Kermes made me laugh so much -- the buggy eyes, the ridiculous outfits and the bopping up and down and side to side was such a caricature. And there’s a voice there. Pity she does such tasteless things with it. But I’d pay money to go see such a comedy show. At least there’s something redeeming about this camp as opposed to Nadja Michael’s approximation of singing.

  • Quanto Painy Fakor

    It’s so strange that the Amsterdam authorities threatened to arrest David Daniels if he did not opt to take the next flight back to Detroit, because his passport was damaged ! Poor singer had to postpone his Hamburg recital because of that.
    From the artist’s Facebook page:
    “Yesterday I flew to Hamburg via Amsterdam arriving into Amsterdam at 6am. 6 years ago a work visa to S. America had come loose from a page in my passport and I removed it. A customs agent in Amsterdam asked me what had been on that page and took me to a private security office. After 2 hours of questioning and missing my flight to Hamburg I was told that the document (my passport) was fraudulent and had two choices. 1) Be arrested and taken to a Dutch prison until a court hearing or 2) be on the next flight home to the USA. At 8:30am I was on a flight home to Detroit. I haven’t slept in 34 hours! NIGHTMARE!!!!

    What’s worse, the Peter Moores Foundation is ending it philanthropy. Many opera companies and future projects affected. From the press release: “Commenting on the Trustees’ decision to close down the Foundation, Sir Peter explained: ‘I started giving some modest financial support to a few young artists whom I met when I was still in my twenties (artists such as the young Geraint Evans, Joan Sutherland, and a burgeoning conductor, Colin Davis)….'”

    The “swansong project” will fund:

    “Opera North – to stage Verdi’s Otello for the first time in its 33-year history. Music Director Richard Farnes conducts 14 performances in Leeds and on tour, opening 16 January 2013.

    Birmingham Opera -- Khovanshchina project – support for the creation of a new site-specific production of Mussorgky’s masterpiece with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, leading to performances in April 2014.

    English Touring Opera -- support for two new productions over two seasons, touring 12-15 towns and cities in the UK:
    Spring 2013: Donizetti’s L’assedio di Calais
    Spring 2015: Donizetti’s Il furioso all’isola di San Domingo

    Scottish Opera -- in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Wagner’s birth, a new production of Die fliegende Hollander directed by Harry Fehr, opening at Theatre Royal Glasgow in April 2013 before touring to Edinburgh. Last performed by Scottish Opera 25 years ago the opera now returns in the season celebrating the Company’s 50th anniversary.

    Welsh National Opera -- Donizetti’s three Tudor operas, Anna Bolena, Maria Stuarda, Roberto Devereux Presented in consecutive productions, Autumn 2013, at the Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff and on tour

    English National Opera -- a major new production of a rarely performed work, featuring the full company, conducted by Music Director Edward Gardner. Details will be released in Spring 2013 when ENO announces its plans for the 2013-2014 Season.

    The Royal Opera, Covent Garden -- UK premiere of George Benjamin’s Written on Skin, March 2013, and new production of Rossini’s La donna del lago, May/June 2013, including live cinema screening, 27 May 2013

    Glyndebourne Festival Opera -- Donizetti’s Poliuto (to be staged in 2015 Season)”

    • A site-specific Khovanshchina sounds vaguely ominous.

      • Quanto Painy Fakor

        Yes, I had the same thought about that. I wonder what venue they plan to destroy at the end. I hope the audience escapes unharmed. But the possibility of Deniese in Poliuto even more foreboding!