Saturday, September 13, 2008

Tales from school

A little bird told us the most endearingly nutso bit of Podliana...

So this was in a rehearsal, and I guess Madame Podles has been putting as much thought into her entrances as we have, because she announced that she'd like to be, as I was told it, "dragged down the stairs for her entrance in Act III."

She makes this known to Guelfi, who demurs, being a gentleman or perhaps afraid of her. And then, apparently wishing to demonstrate her seriousness of intent, "she dived head first and slid down the stairs on her stomach." As they say in Polish: I szit you not.

The chorus, we are told, was aghast!

Of course what I wish would happen is whoever was in charge of Mario Lopez'z appearance in A Chorus Line, you know, where they took a role with essentially no stage time and put him onstage from the get-go so people could get what they paid for, would be flown in to arrange for maximal Podles. She could just kind of hang out and occasionally throw herself off things, though of course I'd prefer if they could shoehorn in a few suitcase arias, maybe La Cieca is sitting on the edge of the stage before the curtain comes up on act I and she's, like, humming to herself, and then busts out with "di tanti palpiti" because, you know, maybe she went to the opera as a little girl, and compensated for her lack of sight with a really good memory for complex Rossinian ornamentation. I don't care, it could be something else. "Summertime." Whatever. It's just a suggestion.


Willym said...

I bet you she'd be game! My partner use to arrange her work visas for Canada - there is definately something wrong when she has sung more often for the COC than the Met - when she would go there to sing. Apparently she was a delight to deal with - always came in the Embassy herself, never her agent or assitant. He adored her.

stewball said...

It seems to me I read that when Podles played Ulrica somewhere or other, they had her appear in the final moments of the opera, flashing an intense look of "Told ya!" (or, I guess, "Told y'all.", depending on which setting was used) I think it just makes sense to get the most mileage out of the most exciting component of the evening, and The Met would be well advised to do this too, as you suggest. I think it'd be great if Barnaba dumped her corpse out of a sack at the very end, letting her fall just a little further downstage than dead Voigt, head toward the audience, eyes wide open and staring. Pandemonium! And, seeing as she goes pretty much everywhere else Gioconda goes, she could also tag along to the ship in the Second Act, and could maybe even contribute to the Giocona/Laura duet a bit, throwing in a hearty "Andate, ragazza!" or "Cantilo, sorella!" after their various one-uppity proclamations.