Excellent stuff as always in today's "Corriere della Sera" arts coverage: an exclusive interview by journalist Valerio Cappelli where Romanian soprano Angela Gheorghiu severely blasts the French-Italian tenor -- and at this point almost-ex husband -- Roberto Alagna.
The couple's divorce is getting ugly. Gheorghiu explains that after reading the Le Figaro interview where Alagna mentioned how she didn't want a divorce. [All translations are copyright of the Opera Chic blog.]
"I fell off the chair: I filed for divorce in Switzerland, where we live. It's all filed... he calls me every day, our relationship is civil, but he wants me back. We both suffered, this is for the best. I won't come back... I did everything I could to save the marriage, we had already suffered a crisis in 2003... I didn't want to do Aida or Cyrano, that's his repertoire...".
She has little love for the Alagna family:
"Roberto was sad because I didn't want to take part in productions directed by his brothers... He has a clannish mentality, I'm the opposite... His Sicialian blood speaks volumes... He's the one who insisted he wanted to marry me, he was free, I wasn't, I had to divorce my first husband Andrej... The media thinks I'm capricious, it's a cross I have to carry... Conductors need to think more about the people who buy tickets because my name's on the playbill. People don't care if I skip a few days of rehearsals"
Why did the marriage end, asks Corriere:
"I come from a family of means that treated me like a princess: they (ed: Alagna's family) have humble roots, I'm sorry, but the difference mattered in the end... Men can't stand a successful woman. When I made the Butterfly CD he disappeared for 10 days. But he checked on me to see if I betrayed him...".
She then denies to have a boyfriend, but says she can't vouch for Alagna's fidelity.
And drops the final nuclear bomb:
"Two composers, the American William Maselli and the Romanian Vladimir Cosma, are writing two operas about me. 'Bonnie & Clyde' and 'Draculette'. My nicknames have become trademarks. At first I thought, how dare they? But if the music's good, I'm singing them both. We just need a tenor now".