../the opera book
The so-called total show, music, singing, performing and staging within one same event (Jack of all trades master of none…) gathers thousands, even some of my best friends, all of them sensible people with a love for culture, avid seekers of joyous art creations yet maybe a little too self-assured and confident of their choice, enough to awake suspicions in me. You never see them falter, they look fail-safe, which more than once has resulted in really funny situations whenever their infallibility reveals the tiniest of fractures.
Opera moves them, makes them quiver, cry. They love it and get excited by it, even horny I would say. That’s why I often think of the famous scene at the opera in the movie ‘Pretty Woman’.
It takes place at San Francisco Opera where Edward Lewis takes Vivian, a prostitute, to see ‘La Traviata’ (they couldn’t have picked a better one, I’ll tell you why later). Vivian has never been to the opera before and Edward, from his higher moral stature, utters some words that could apply to any venturing for the first time into the world of opera:
‘Some people say that opera is an acquired taste, but I don’t believe it. You can always tell when someone goes to the opera for the first time. They either love it or hate it. Those who love it will always love it; those who hate it might come to appreciate it but they’ll never truly love it’.
After the gig, Vivian looks at the stage with tearful eyes when a woman asks her if she had liked the performance. She replies: ‘I just about pissed my pants!’
I don’t quite wet my pants, at least not always, but I do know that more than one of my friends absolutely drench theirs. That is why I dedicate this book to them and to all those who possess the ability to ponder, with all my love and hoping to instil in them the friendly bug of Cartesian doubt.
I hereby present a few arias from various operas which I picked based solely on my own criteria, without the slightest knowledge of music. My unforgiving yet honest analysis of the plots is simply based on my own personal sensations and on quite revealing biographical facts. I also added my modest graphic input, well, what I would call a little bit of painting to illustrate my arguments.
In the hope that you may find it entertaining, I present you with my totally unpretentious divertimento. Here’s to you, my friends!
This paragraph belongs to the introduction to the book I published delving into the swampy lands of the opera world. With more unconsciousness than common sense, I faced the challenge of offering, through my plastic expression and a few texts, a sincere but somewhat scathing vision of the lights and shadows that, in my opinion, populate the world of lyrics.