Cher Public

“Silence is of the gods; only monkeys chatter”

Born on this day in 1895 actor, director, and producer Buster Keaton

Born on this day in 1893 soprano Göta Ljungberg.

Born on this day in 1894 soprano/mezzo-sorpano Margherita Grandi.

Born on this day in 1921 tenor Gianni Poggi.

Born on this day in 1931 mezzo-soprano Anna Reynolds.

Happy 77th birthday conductor Alain Lombard.

Happy 76th birthday director and designer Robert Wilson.

Happy 68th birthday tenor John Aler.

Happy 67th birthday tenor Francisco Araiza.

  • Camille

    And speaking of monkeys chattering…has anyone at all some substantive information as to what’s up with Kristine Opolais? It looks plausibly to be a pregnancy leave of absence by the period of time she is inactive, but who knows for certain?

    It’s only because I am praying to Santa Cecilia that the Trittico centennial performances will be sung by three different sopranos, as it was inTENDed, and not by one, beautiful, but vocally severely challenged singer.

    In this case it’s not ‘THE VOICE MUST BE HEARD’, but ‘THREE VOICES…etc. ad nauseam’.

  • Coming up at the Opéra Comique:

    • Camille

      Elfriede is a scary old witch like me, so I think I must avoid.

      Have fun, though!!!!!! Just in time for HALLOW’EN!!!!!! Bonus!

      • But as operagoers we’re all used to scary old witches.

  • Camille

    Opening Night at Carnegie Hall being broacast live starting at 7 pm EDT tonight.

    Featuring Lang Lang as soloist with Nézet-Seguin conducting Philadelphia Orchestra in a Gershwin and Bernstein concert.

    Over @.

  • LEYLA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Coming up on Leyla Gencer’s birthday (10/10/28) I have a few tales, some which you may have heard before. I saw her twice, once in 1972 Attila, and then when she and Barbieri came to an Albanese Gala to be honored. We got her flowers, and she was so happy people remembered her.
    After the Attila, Armen Boyajian threw her a party (the photo I posted) and my comment has always been “There wasn’t a man in the place!” This reminds me of the Olivero Met 1975 debut, where a lady asked my friend, “Is this a gay bar?”
    My late friend Ivan who would KILL for Gencer, had removed all other divas’ photos prior to her arrival. On the following New Year’s eve, in walked Kabaiwanska, who looked at the walls and exclaimed, “Is this a shrine?” FUNNY!!!!!
    A little side story: Ivan was a drinker, and one night we had a party at a friend’s house and the comparison between Leyla’s and Callas’ “D’amor sull’ali” was discussed. Ivan became enraged that my friend preferred Callas..he screamed, “GET OUT!” My friend said, “But I LIVE HERE!!” Ivan said..”Get out anyway!!!!!”
    Leyla had her flaws as we know…some gulping,over glottal attacks, some unsteadiness, but for us “pirates” (and she was known as “Queen of the Pirates”…or maybe “Queen of the queens.”
    For me,she was the most exciting, totaly committed, magnificent singer imaginable, but she could never sing at the Met, because they want only “purity.”..which means “Generic.”
    I recall very little of that 1972 Newwark Attila, except a fabulous D natural at the end of the tenor/soprano duet..that alone told me a lot about her excitement..not a huge voice..but well-placed! She sang zillions of roles, and sadly,like Olivero and Zeani, did not receive the true recognition she deserved, but those who know her work love her so much.
    Zeani was happy she complimented her in an article about the world premiere at Scala of Carmelites. I mention this because Zeani once told me, “Cigna was even meaner than Leyla!!!”
    Leyla, we miss you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!