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  • Krunoslav: Gwyneth Jones returned to the stage for a bow after “Abscheulicher!” at the Met in 1976. And... 7:24 AM
  • The Conte: If there’s one thing that a chap doesn’t need reminding of on a Saturday morning,... 7:15 AM
  • Olivero is my Drug of Choice: I didn’t know she had recorded these. Netrebko/Barenboim in Four Last... 5:37 AM
  • SF Guy: SFO has done Tosca so often lately, there are now four clipfest previews on YouTube; Jagde has been... 5:33 AM
  • Lohengrin: There is another clip: https://www.youtub e.com/watch?v=N3o6 yCtflzk 5:29 AM
  • Lohengrin: See Haroutounian as Elisabetta from London on YT (poor acting – JK tries to act arround her,... 5:27 AM
  • Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin: I think we petty much established that the Radamès is Giovanni Martinelli most... 3:57 AM
  • Guestoria Unpopularenka: Only 1 night. Why? I have no clue. 3:34 AM
  • La Cieca: Selecting video clips for the “On this day” feature is difficult: how, for example, is... 3:17 AM
  • Cicciabella: Finally! Soneone who likes Haroutounian for herself and not because she comes to the aid of an... 2:41 AM

Prelude to the Quantification of the Diva

diva_quantificationLa Cieca is delighted to announce a week-long series of investigative reports deciding once and for all the question “Who is the greatest opera diva of our generation?” Read more »

The People’s Courtesan

Thais2Like Liza Minnelli at the Palace or Nomi Malone in Goddess, Renée Fleming‘s Thaïs is better understood as diva event than Gesamtkunstwerk. It’s an opportunity to watch a star lady do her voodoo in a work that exists largely to showcase her glamour and appeal. Read more »

Kiss me deadly

La Cieca is just guessing here (with some prompting from Zachary Woolfe) but she thinks she has divined the coup de théâtre climaxing the Met’s new production of Tosca.

They shoot Mario, etc. etc., and then Karita Mattila runs crazily off the stage as the guards come rushing on. They search all about but cannot find her: it’s as if Tosca has disappeared from the face of the earth.

Seachlights sweep the stage and then the auditorium.

“Ah! Tosca, pagherai ben cara la sua vita!” cries Spoletta, and suddenly the spotlight focuses on a Dress Circle box, house right. The Finnish diva sings the famous final line and the even more famous high B-flat, and hurls herself into space…

… only to land squarely on the “incognito” Franco Zeffirelli, who has chosen just this moment to exit in disgust up the orchestra aisle. Their unison “oof” is drowned out by the roars of the applauding crowd.

It’s so meta La Cieca can hardly see straight.

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All fall down

Our Own JJ (not pictured) nominates the can’t-miss operatic and vocal events of the autumn of 2009. [NYP]

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curtain up, light the headlights

Or, “Tosca è un buon funbag!”

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“her bosom heaves, her cheeks are staring scarlet”

Sharp-eyed reader Sadie Salome writes: It seems I was the only one spent much of last night’s letter scene peering through her binoculars at Karita Mattila‘s fine acting, because I see no report on your site of last night’s mishap (and if it isn’t on your site, then it obviously hasn’t been reported anywhere!) As you can see in the photograph below, the nightgown which Tatiana wears for her letter scene has a couple buttons in the middle that hold the front together, though it’s still split a little bit even when fastened. 

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future tense

11:25: Connectivity restored. A quick catchup.

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afternoon delight

Karita Mattila in the HD telecast of Salome starts here in New York on Channel 13 in ten minutes. DVRs set?

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if ever i would leave you

Got to give credit to Bryn Terfel: he’s now canceling a whole season in advance. The bass-baritone scrapped his spring 2009 appearance in the Met’s L’elisir d’amore several months ago, and now he’s pulled out of the company’s 2009 opening night, a new production of Tosca that now stars Karita Mattila and Marcelo Alvarez. The frankly unstarry Juha Uusitalo subs as Scarpia under the baton of James Levine in this new Luc Bondy production. Uusitalo is also skedded for Jack Rance in the 2010-2011 Fanciulla which is to feature Marcello GIordani‘s Dick, plus plucky hometown favorite TBA as the eponymous [...]

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pubic domain

La Cieca has managed to obtain a few fragments of the camera rehearsal for Saturday afternoon’s Salome HD telecast. Note the cutting-edge video techniques employed to distract the (presumably) pre-adolescent audience from Karita’s Kooter of Kontroversy. [kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/UdWjLz5NY-E" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

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