Cher Public

And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you

“Alluring soprano star Danielle de Niese, wife of Glyndebourne Opera boss Gus Christie, had that sinking feeling when she arrived for a performance at the Arts Club in Mayfair—and discovered her glamorous gowns were missing!” [Daily Mail]

Multitasking

As if wowing a capacity crowd at his Met debut recital were not enough, protean performer Andrea Bocelli has branched out into an entirely new field as a wardrobe stylist. He’s pictured here with satisfied clients Angela Gheorghiu and Renée Fleming.

Aftermath the ball

poplavskaya_gala_smallLovely Marina Poplavskaya, arriving at the Mercedes T. Bass Grand Tier for dinner following the opening night of La traviata, demonstrates that the previous Franco Zeffirelli production has not gone to waste. The latter-day Scarlett O’Hara‘s motto: “Reduce Reuse Recycle!” Read more »

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“That concept is insane!”

“Director Manfred Schweigkofler conceives a new production that pits the Capulets and Montagues against one another as dueling fashion houses. Against a backdrop of models, paparazzi and high style, Romeo and Juliet’s love for each other unfolds to its deadly conclusion.” [Opera Company of Philadelphia]

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Pop goes the peplum!

Well, all La Cieca can think is that the New York City Opera has just plain decided to win your doyenne over, because otherwise how can you explain why the company would present an art installation that combines her two very favorite things in the entire universe, i.e., couture and explosions?

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Uno squarcio di vita

“Verismo,” Renée Fleming informs us, “means truth.” What better demonstration of this artist’s dedication to the real-life (not to say the mundane) than her apparent decision to fire her stylist and hairdresser in hopes of achieving a greater naturalism of appearance. Indeed, La Cieca would say that Fleming has succeeded: at least as documented in this video, she looks as if she might have inspired dear Lady Bracknell‘s celebrated quotation.* 

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this diva looks like that matron

La Cieca is fully aware that Anna Netrebko is a dress size or two bigger now than she was a couple of years ago. And yet, there is no excuse, no excuse I tell you, to transform the young courtesan Violetta Valery into the middle-aged dowager Mrs. Claypool. Now, La Cieca has a couple of things to rant about here.

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“i’m fifty!”

Renée Fleming, known as “The Beautiful Voice” and “Diva of the Future,” has won a new whaddyacallit, a new, uh, sobriquet. Courtesy of commenter Camille, Ms. Fleming will henceforth be known as “Opera MILF.” (At last night’s 125th Anniversary Gala, La Fleming rocked “a costume based on the one worn by Maria Jeritza for [Die Tote Stadt‘s] U.S. premiere in 1921.  Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera.) More photos from the gala may be found on the Met’s website.

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financial recession grips worldwide economy

A member of the cher public reports that a note in the program for tonight’s concert performance of the Der Rosenkavalier in Paris reads: “Renee Fleming wears a dress by John Galliano created specially for the Gala Opening of the Metropolitan Opera on September 22, 2008.”

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divan decadence

Our Own Gualtier Maldè reports: Not every opera has to be a masterpiece.  I couldn’t subsist on a steady diet of Tristan und Isolde, Die Zauberfloete, Fidelio, plus Otello,  Falstaff et al.  Frankly the occasional light comic bonbon or trashy but fun melodramatic tunefest makes a nice palate cleanser.  I am talking Adriana Lecouvreur, La Gioconda, Mignon – you know – the operas critics love to hate.  I very much wanted Thaïs to be a guilty pleasure like La Gioconda or Adriana but alas, the opening night performance of the Met’s new production dashed my hopes.  Thaïs is an act […]

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