"Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

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John F
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"Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by John F » Tue Apr 19, 2016 1:33 am

‘Tosca’ Pauses When a Diva Misses Her Cue on Vienna Stage
By MICHAEL COOPER
APRIL 18, 2016

Was it a stunning diva moment or an innocent mishap? Angela Gheorghiu, the Romanian soprano, was singing the title role in Puccini’s “Tosca” in a starry production at the Vienna State Opera on Saturday when she very conspicuously missed her entrance in the third act. That left her co-star, Jonas Kaufmann, perhaps the most sought-after tenor in the world, awkwardly alone onstage as minutes ticked by.

“Non abbiamo il soprano,” or, “We don’t have the soprano,” Mr. Kaufmann sang in Puccini-like strains before the opera ground to halt and he broke character and asked the audience to excuse them, in German. The opera began again, and Ms. Gheorghiu entered.



But the back story was intriguing. Mr. Kaufmann had gotten such rapturous applause at an earlier performance in the run that he sang a rare encore of the aria “E lucevan le stelle,” something Ms. Gheorghiu has indicated in the past that she disapproves of. It was right after Mr. Kaufmann sang another encore of the aria on Saturday that she left him alone onstage.

André Comploi, a spokesman for the opera house, said in an email that it did not appear to be an intentional slight. He said that when Ms. Gheorghiu realized that Mr. Kaufmann would be repeating the aria, she returned to her dressing room. The confusion, he said, stemmed from the fact that there was no pause for applause after the encore, as there had been at the previous performance, and that apparently made Ms. Gheorghiu late for her entrance.

Representatives for Ms. Gheorghiu did not respond to an email seeking comment.

Ms. Gheorghiu has been accused of prima donna behavior in the past. She once balked at wearing a blond wig while singing the part of Micaela in Franco Zeffirelli’s production of Bizet’s “Carmen” during a Metropolitan Opera tour of Japan. That led Joseph Volpe, who was then the company’s general manager, to tell her that “the wig goes on, with or without you.”

In the next performance the wig went on without her. But for the following performances, she and the wig both appeared.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/04/19/arts/ ... rance.html

AlanM tells me there could be even more to it than this. In the Opera-L mailing list it's said that in the earlier performance, Gheorghiu actually left the opera house and the cover singer had to go on, sing the rest of Act 3 for her, and jump. Se non e vero, e ben trovato.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by lennygoran » Tue Apr 19, 2016 6:51 am

Wow-thanks for reporting this-where was the firing squad when they needed it! Len

maestrob
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by maestrob » Tue Apr 19, 2016 12:04 pm

Jealousy between opera singers: who knew? :mrgreen:

jbuck919
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by jbuck919 » Tue Apr 19, 2016 6:08 pm

To me the only question is, why was the cover singer not called on immediately? Let's face it, this was a fiasco. a travesty, and all those other good words. Oh well, Si fueris Rōmae, Rōmānō vīvitō mōre; si fueris Viennae, vīvitō sicut ibi.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

John F
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by John F » Tue Apr 19, 2016 9:35 pm

From the video clip, the lapse was less than two minutes, perhaps as much time as it would have taken Gheorghiu to get to the stage from her dressing room once she realized, or stage staff told her, that she'd missed her entrance. Cover singers don't hover in the wings throughout the opera in costume and makeup, just in case; since Gheorghiu was in good health and good voice, there was no reason to. If the story about the previous performance is true, and it may not be, the break in the performance would have been a good deal longer until the cover singer was ready to go on.
John Francis

maestrob
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by maestrob » Wed Apr 20, 2016 11:44 am

Gheorghiu has done this sort of dive-ish behavior before. At the MET, Leonard Slatkin withdrew from a production of La Traviata after Angela G. skipped at least one rehearsal.

barney
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by barney » Wed Apr 20, 2016 6:19 pm

Great story.
She married Roberto Alagna, divorced him, got back together again, split again, then she complained of violence. Of course no one knows what goes on in private, but why get back together?

lennygoran
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by lennygoran » Wed Apr 20, 2016 7:55 pm

barney wrote:Great story.
She married Roberto Alagna, divorced him, got back together again, split again, then she complained of violence. Of course no one knows what goes on in private, but why get back together?
Barney reminds me of burton and liz! Len

jserraglio
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by jserraglio » Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:08 am

barney wrote:Great story.
She married Roberto Alagna, divorced him, got back together again, split again, then she complained of violence. Of course no one knows what goes on in private, but why get back together?
She'd be a natural then as "Anna Nicole".

josé echenique
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Re: "Tosca" in Vienna: where's Tosca?

Post by josé echenique » Thu Apr 21, 2016 6:20 pm

The Lady Vanishes.

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