10 October 2006

The Fleming Norma

It's finally (almost) happening. La Cieca announces that contracts have been signed in Zurich for Renee Fleming's first Normas. Like Swiss clockwork, vocal opera queens in various online opera forums are near-unanimous in censure. Alone, Sieglinde has campaigned for the Fleming Norma from the beginning, even sending her "emissaries" to see her backstage and put a word in for the Druid priestess. The extraordinary reverence that bel canto aficionados have for the role and the opera is sure to make Fleming's next experiment the fiercest battle since Francesca Zambello. If Zurich doesn't turn out to be too disastrous, Fleming will most certainly take the show on the road, and to grander stages. Meanwhile, we have Peter Gelb, always with the eye for splash and the bottom line. Thus, it is inevitable: the Fleming Normas are coming to your nearest balcony box. O what glee!