Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Dame Whiz Bang Te Kanawa

Let's face it, Friendlies - Grande Dame Kiri Te Kanawa doesn't like Susan Boyle.

Te Kanawa, who felt "insulted" when asked about Boyle, referred to her as a "whiz bang" star, whose spectacular success would ultimately fizzle.

AFP is reporting:
In an interview with a British magazine, Te Kanawa said she was "insulted" to be asked about Boyle...

"Let's get off that subject. Move on. I'm doing something classical, not whiz-bang. Whiz-bang disappears. It goes 'whiz' and then 'bang'," she told the Radio Times magazine.

"You insult me by even wanting to bring it into this conversation. I'm not interested," the dame added.
Trust me, Dame Kiri ... I understand where you're coming from, Sister. I feel the same way when people ask me about Andrea Bocelli. Although with Bocelli, sometimes my insult quickly turns to the need to punch someone. But, we'll save that tidbit for another post.

Quick sidebar - when in the hell is Bocelli's "whiz" going to "bang", already?! Seriously. He needs to be done.

Now, you'll remember that Susan Boyle was discovered in 2009 when she blind-sided the judges on the "Britain's Got Talent" show with her performance of "I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Miserables.

Although the 48-year-old ended runner-up in the competition, the YouTube clip of her singing became a hit, with almost 100 million viewings.

I'm not sure if this was Boyle's "whiz" or the "bang" but her first album, I Dreamed a Dream, was the best-selling debut in British chart history and also topped the US charts.

Te Kanawa meanwhile continued to deny she was a diva. Again, from AFP:
"I'm just a human being with an opinion that I'm not allowed, at 66 years old, to select," she told the weekly.

She also denied suggestions she was retiring from the stage. "I don't wear short skirts any more, for obvious reasons," she said. "I don't do certain things any more -- for obvious reasons.

"That doesn't mean I've retired."
**UPDATE**

A soprano friend of mine, Susan Windham, responded to this post on Facebook with:
Transitions are hard. It's hard when you realize you're not going to run up stairs, sing a high b-flat and jump off a parapet any more. Smart graciousness advised.
Words were never truer. Sue, to quote a line from Moonstruck: "... you have such a head for knowing."

1 comment:

Squillo said...

Your friend Ms. Windham is wise, indeed, although I'm inclined to forgive Dame Kiri her indiscretions. Just because one has a right to voice one's opinion, it doesn't follow that one should.

But I'm going to anyway...

I found the Susan Boyle phenomenon insulting for reasons other than Dame Kiri's. While I think Boyle has a perfectly fine voice for the kind of music she chooses to sing, she only became a huge success because people were so astonished that someone who was not attractive (gasp!) by conventional standards could sing and move people. Strangely enough, this is something opera lovers have known for a long, long time.

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