Puccini’s Tosca has a great entrance, a fabulous exit and a fine aria in between, in which she sings of living for her art. There isn’t a soprano out there who doesn’t dream of singing the part of the doomed diva.
Terrence McNally’s funny, reverential and wholly engrossing “Master Class” brings us all too briefly into the distinctive orbit of Maria Callas in the twilight of her career, when the soprano called La Divina critiqued young singers before invited audiences of opera students.
Even a dog can’t run away with the show when Roberto Alagna is on stage. As the sweetly silly farmhand in “L’Elisir d’Amore,” now at London’s Royal Opera House, the tenor hogs the limelight with his seductive voice and athletic belly flops.
Living in the world of Beyonce and Rihanna makes it hard to conjure up an era when the word “diva” was reserved for people of such altitudinous vocal talent and bad manners that only evocations of divinity could do them justice.
The ostensible mystery at the heart of the play “Onassis” concerns a suggestion that shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis paid for the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy . The real mystery, though, is how such a clunky, amateurish piece sailed into London’s West End.