Booing at the ballet???
Posted 23 April 2002 - 03:22 PM
All right, the truth be known, I do withhold my applause on occasion. The whole idea of booing a performance reminds me of a scene from Fellini's Satyricon, or perhaps big time wrestling.
Posted 21 April 2002 - 05:21 PM
I confess I once booed the great Franco Corelli at the opera. It was a performance of Turandot with the even greater Birgit Nillson. Corelli had good looks and the greatest tenor voice since Jussi Bjorling, but his stage deportment was atrocious. In the final scene of Turandot, while Nillson descended a long staircase, he waited for her at the bottom, with his arms folded and looking bored out of his skull. When she arrived, he kicked the train of her dress out of his way and began the love duet, facing the audience and holding her at arm's length. After the performance, when he took a solo call, I booed. It seemed the right thing to do at the time, but I've been sorry ever since. He was a magnificent singer and reportedly suffered from terrible stage fright.
Posted 30 April 2002 - 08:12 AM
However, sometimes I feel like booing when most of the audience is cheering. Some years ago, there was a production of Cavalleria Rusticana at the New York City Opera directed by Vera Zorina. During the justly famous Intermezzo, when nothing is supposed to happen onstage, the better to contemplate the mysteries of Sicilian honor, Easter, and Mascagni's music, Zorina staged a ballet for little girls in communion dresses. The audience loved it.
Cav and Pag seem to bring out the worst in directors. A few years after the Zorina production, they were transferred from their original locales in Sicily and Southern Italy to New York's Little Italy, under an elevated train station. I admit it was striking concept. There even was simulated sexual intercourse ender the el, between Turiddu and Lola. Once again the audience cheered loudly. But I thought the music was ill-served. Nobody booed. Most people cheered. And I just sat there.
Posted 10 May 2002 - 07:58 AM
"But when Joseph Volpe, the Met's general manager, went onstage before the performance to make it official, the pent-up anger spilled out and he was greeted by vociferous boos. Looking just like a modern-day operatic villain in his stylish suit and trim goatee, he said, 'Boo some more, if it makes you feel better.'"
Posted 23 April 2002 - 02:33 PM
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