"They needed to save the soprano [Angela Gheorghiu], no matter how willfully she distorted the phrasing, moment to moment. The conductor was expendable. My lowest point opening night came at the big ensemble number closing the third act. I cut off and everyone ended on cue, but she just hung on. It finally threw me. Yes, things got very wobbly after that.
"So why would I want to stay on as a traffic cop, when she was running all the red lights, anyway? Bottom line, it's a blip on the radar."