The very first words in this issue are “Renata Scotto will return to the American operatic stage in the 2001 season!” And if just gets more exciting from there! Casting and repertoire gossip from all over the place; the Top 50 Excuses for Jane Eaglen‘s Isolde; reviews by Dawn Fatale, Qual Cor, Enzo Bordello, Doug Peck, Richard and Peter, Flora Bervoix and The Loge Lizard; Leila de Lakmé pays tribute to Leonie Rysanek, and that notorious “artist’s conception” of Renée Fleming with the nekkid guys in Alcina. [Download Issue #39]
“When Canadian soprano Meghan Lindsay agreed to appear in the title role of Handel’s opera Alcina for Opera Atelier’s 2014-15 season, she never thought her job description would include standing on a stepladder for three hours, naked, except for 20,000 leaves hot-glue-gunned onto a piece of fabric. Oh yes, and there were seven naked men on the ground around her.” [The Star]
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea) is opera on the grand scale with mellifluous arias and breathtaking duets that tell a tale of ancient Roman political machinations, adultery, and murder in which there is no true protagonist. This stunningly expressive music is performed by an all-star cast. Soprano Miah Persson, praised by The New York Times for her “sumptuous sound and elegant lyricism,” is joined by singers who have all won worldwide critical acclaim for their mastery of this beautiful repertoire. The Guardian wrote that “there are few performers better-versed in the music of Claudio Monteverdi than Rinaldo Alessandrini and the ensemble he founded 30 years ago, Concerto Italiano.” Alessandrini and company anchor a performance that promises to be one of the season’s most thrilling nights of opera.
What other company indeed but the Bayerische Staatsoper would commission David LaChapelle to photograph Diana Damrau for their portrait gallery? (And, not to put too fine a point on it, what’s the deal with the dead naked guy?) [Flaunt]
Promiscuous — it’s not a pretty word. But when a matron in black underwear cavorts with two dozen naked hunks, what else can you call her?
A parterre reader just back from the matinee of Powder Her Face relates this story of two elderly ladies seated in the second row…
Now it seems the NYCO’s Duchess of Argyll will have to make do with a mere 25 lovers in the company’s production of Powder Her Face—instead of the originally planned 88.
“Greek Fire…. will see [Eva] Mendes playing the role of famed opera singer Maria Callas, but don’t expect her to be doing any arias, or even lip-synching for that matter. Instead, the biographical drama will focus on Callas’ scandalous affair with shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis.” [Toronto Sun]
Which tenor, who’s notorious for his off-the-chain antics, recently gave his colleagues the willies when he sauntered about backstage butt-naked?
“Why is the needlessly naked executioner so coy about showing us his wobbly bits?” [The Telegraph]