La Divina

Whenever I go to the theater or live music, I wonder “Why don’t I do this more often?” Live performance of any sort creates such energy. I always go home inspired to create things of my own. It is one of those things that I need to make an effort to do more often. And it is certainly is one of those better life things that this blog is about.

Maybe if I went more often, I’d finally work up the nerve to go audition for Portland Revels, something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, but am too cowardly to do. It’s silly. I just want to audition for the chorus, but there is a small part of me that is terrified they will hear me and say “With that voice??? What is SHE doing here?” Then there is the whole fat lady insecurity thing, but that’s a whole other post.

Someone who will never have to worry about people’s hearts at the sound of her lovely voice is Amy Jo Halliday, who starred in  Triangle Productions recent run of Ari-Maria. Like all of the actors in the show, she has a magnificent voice.

I was excited to go, because the musical director is an acquaintance. It is always fun to see work you have a connection to, no matter how distant. And when the connection is genuinely nice, it’s especially fun to see him succeed. However even without the personal connection, the music was wonderful. I am relieved. It is so much nicer to be able to honestly proclaim “It was great!” than it is to see someone and have to come up with some diplomatic positive that won’t hurt someone’s artistic sensitivity.

Music aside, the play itself was interesting. The story focuses on the love affair between Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis. And let me tell you, old Ari was big old crap weasel if he was even half the social climbing cad he is portrayed to be in the play. Perhaps he offered her an escape from Washington after a devastating time in her life, but I kept thinking Jackie must have been completely insane to marry him – especially when he’d already had an affair with her sister. Maybe I’m just old fashioned, but one day when I marry a Greek shipping magnate after stealing him from a diva who is inexplicably in love with him even after he abandons her when she loses their love child, I don’t want to be able to talk to my sister about his junk and have her know exactly what I’m talking about. But that’s just me.

Meanwhile, here is some footage of the real Maria Callas singing  Una Voce Poco Fa. Heaven. Can you believe she was ever overweight enough to lose 80 pounds? She did! She was much heavier at the beginning of her career.

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