Comments: In the Eye of the Beholder, After All

Re your last point, I take it you're unfamiliar with the recent hubbub in the opera world about Covent Garden firing famed soprano Deborah Voigt from a run of "Ariadne auf Naxos" (one of her signature roles) *because she wouldn't fit into the dress the director had decided on for the leading lady's costume.* They filled the role with a woman of lesser voice because of Voigt's zaftig dimensions--and this in an art form where the sole consideration for the leading lady has traditionally been the notes coming out of her throat. I've seen Voigt perform; if I were a Covent Garden ticket holder I'd be furious.

For your perusal: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/chronicle/archive/2004/03/15/DDG0V5JIHV1.DTL

Posted by Kerry at May 27, 2004 05:45 PM

Regarding contemporary art...
In my never-ending quest to find a decent job, I applied at a modern and contemporary art museum affiliated with the Smithsonian. One of the questions on the application packet was "Describe your view of modern and contemporary art."

Well. I couldn't exactly write that modern art makes me want to slit my wrists... That surrealism is the equivalent of a thousand night terrors. I ended up writing a very tactful sentence about realism and the Art Deco movement. It was challenging indeed. I hope I get the job.

Posted by Allison at May 28, 2004 04:00 PM

Kerry,

I'm not too familiar with opera, but I must say that is an appalling story. However, if opera fans have the same general reaction as you did to the news, then I would argue it proves my point: fans care deeply about the quality of the music, not the looks of the people performing it.

As for the director, though, I am mystified as to what the person was thinking.

------

Allison,

You COULD have written that, but it would have undoubtedly made for an awkward interview! Also, best of luck with the job search -- I hope that goes very well for you.

Posted by Benjamin Kepple at May 28, 2004 07:41 PM