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Director de opera, job description

S-a discutat, argumentat si votat (eu cu mine, evident) ca e momentul sa ne relaxam, amuzam si aducem aminte. Vine Craciunul, ce mai conteaza mici dezamagiri si asteptari ratate…Cateodata chiar nu e cazul sa ne luam foarte in serios :-)

Propun o incursiune in memo-urile lui Rudolf Bing pe vremea cand conducea MET-ul. E vorba de anii ’60 dar unele dintre situatii sunt extrem de actuale…

“To:[Chrorus Delegate]. From Rudolf Bing.

I would be grateful if you would please ask the gentlemen of the chorus when after the chorus scene or act they crowd in front of the elevator that they would be good enough to look out the principal artists and see that they are not crowded out.

It seems unreasonable that Mr. del Monaco and/or Mr. Warren after very heavy scenes would have to walk up three flights because they cannot get quickly into the elevator I am quite sure that the it only needs a reminder to our always helpful chorus gentleman to give the principal artists the courtesy of letting them ride with them with as little delay as possible…”

“To:[Stage Manager]. From Rudolf Bing.

Will you please immediately obtain a suitable knife with a rubber blade for the use in Act IV of Carmen. I would like in any performance in which Mr. Tucker or Mr. Vinay appears to use the real knife as so far; but in any performance  in which Mr. del Monaco or Mr. Baum appears as Don Jose I would like them please to use the rubber knife. They have had less rehearsal in the part…[In fact, Miss Stevens was terrified of the way both del Monaco and Baum threw themselves into their role…].”

“To:[Stage Manager]. From Rudolf Bing.

Please remind all artists and tell the new ones that, as last year, I shall be grateful if they would keep “hands down” in the front of the curtain and would not resume the practice of congratulating each other.”

“To:[Chief Electrician]. From Rudolf Bing.

I hear that a special effect machine for “Don Giovanni” that was estimated to cost 50 dollars has now turned to cost 220 dollars. I am very sorry but I am unwilling and unable to purchase the machine that price which was never authorised. Will you please, therefore, return the machine…and work out another way of achieving the effect….”

“To:[House Management]. From Rudolf Bing.

The last few performances I sat for quite a while in one of the House seats in order to check on complaints that have reached me from patrons sitting on the corridor aisles, particularly on the 39th street side. Unfortunately, I found it quite true that these unhappy people who are paying 8 dollars just like everybody else, are badly disturbed by late coming patrons and ushers talking in the corridor.”

“To [Assistant Stage Manager]. From Rudolf Bing.

Subject: Canary for “Pagliacci”

I took special trouble  at the last performance to watch the bird in its cage and found that it is impossible to realize whether it is alive or stuffed. I suggest, therefore, that we should not harass the poor animal any further by carting it up and down in the cold and that it should be given to somebody who wants it and assures you that he will treat it well and keep it in a warm, brightly lit room…”

“To:[All Solo Cast]. From Rudolf Bing.

Despite the Management’s continued efforts to do away with the claque in this theatre this regrettable institution has by no means disappeared, and in fact it would seem that in recent weeks it has shown up with particular virulence. The management has received an ever-increasing number of letters by subscribers who complain – and quite rightly – about this unbearable nuisance.

Nothing is, of course, more desirable in an opera house than applause and enthusiasm in general. Both artists and Management would certainly rue the day, if it ever came, when there would be silence after a great aria or at the end of an act. However, it seems to me, I do think that it should appear to all real artists, that paid applause is a reflection on rather than a sign of artistic merit…”

Oare la noi a fost vreodata claca???


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