Of course La Cieca takes exception to some of the selections for the 2014 Freddie Awards, but that’s what makes baseball, after all. What does rankle your doyenne (and by how you surely know you do not want to see La Cieca rankled!) is the “Special Freddie” awarded to Christine Goerke, whose response is, well, perhaps a trifle less than completely ingenuous.
The award goes to Goerke not for any particular performance but rather as a representative of “all the other opera singers who make a point of appearing live in regional North American opera companies so that audiences can experience the sound of live performance by major artists.”
Goerke said, “I have a strong commitment to seeing that the smaller companies around our country are not squashed by the weight of HD movie casts. We have lost a few companies already to economic conditions and shrinking audiences.”
Now, this is a little hard to swallow. Goerke’s recent (and upcoming) bookings in places like Detroit and Houston are surely not the function of pure artistic altruism on her part but rather part of the pragmatic process of finding enough gigs to stay gainfully employed. Nobody goes on singing regularly in the sticks once the A houses start proffering contracts, and it’s easy enough to predict that, assuming Goerke can keep her voice in trim for this most recent reinvention as a Hochdramatische, she will show an equally strong commitment to the higher fees and artistic standards of the big international houses instead of the regional backwaters she’s been swimming in since her most recent vocal crisis. (And she’s not going to turn her nose up at the HD either, assuming anyone offers one to her.)