Saturday, October 31, 2009

A Gift From the Opera National de Paris

Those who follow the articles of my blog may recall that Poteet Theatre recently went to Germany to present their award-winning production of John and Jen. The crew of the show as well as the administrative officers of our theatre had a marvelous time in the Rheinland, and when they departed from thence they allowed themselves the additonal luxury of vacationing in Paris, France, for some time. Asking my opinion of which was the best opera house in Paris, I told my dear friend Mr. Prock that I thought the best was the Paris National Opera, so he made it a priority to visit the Palais Garnier to procure some token for me. When he saw this magnificent edifice that serves to glorify opera, he told me that his first emotion was to weep because it was so incredibly beautiful. He also related that he thought the Met was the most gorgeous opera house that he had ever had the pleasure to see, but he said that Opera National de Paris "blew the Met out of the water," if I may quote his phrase. In beauty of their respective venues, I should agree with him, but I must assert that the Met has the luxury of the better casts in its advantage.

The gift he gave me was a program of Charles Gounod's Mireille, which apparently had its premeire run at the company earlier this season. I was overjoyed at the thickness of the program, for this indicates that there is more to peruse and discover, but I was rather taken aback by the advertisement that appeared on the inside cover of the booklet which depicts a model presenting some perfume only lacking an essential part of her raiment. Mr. Prock assured me that his stay in France was pervaded by much of the same imagery, which, I suppose, reveals something as to their lax state of morals in the region around the Loire. Mr. Prock, though he did pay homage to the aforementioned opera house, the Eiffel Tower, and several restaurants, would not visit the Louvre museum, the Musee de l'homme, made forever infamous by the international incident concerning orthodontist Jack Cuozzo of which few know, the Bibliotheque National de France, the Champs Elysees, and other places that I should have visited on such a journey as he had. Another disappointment that I had with the party was that the only food of which they partook was crepes. I should have liked to hear them tell of all of the fabulous French cuisine they tried while they were there and could enjoy it within the best location for that variety of comestible. I think that all of you know by now that I watch far too many travel programs and would invariably add great unecessary expense to my budget in departing to another locale.

In other news in opera, Opera News' website reveals that tenor Roberto Alagna and soprano Angela Gheorghiu are attempting to obtain a divorce. The breaking news alert also indicates that the couple, who have long been billed as opera's dream couple, have been separated from each other for these past two years, which means that during the run of Puccini's La Rondine at the Met last season they must have already assumed that state, but they were still agreeable with each other then. It is alleged that their impending divorce is the reason that Gheorghiu has withdrawn from most of her performances in the Met's current season's new production of Bizet's Carmen for the fact that Alagna is singing Don Jose. Is this actually the case, or is the media making more of this than they ought? I am leaning towards the latter opinion.

Thank you all for your continued visit of my posts.


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