In his quest for perfection lies his legacy and his tragedy. His unique voice remains legendary, an example for several generations. The fact that an opera singer is commemorated in the media around the world on the centenary of his birth and continues to reign in the hearts (and record shelves) of music lovers reinforces his legend.
Maria Callas (1923-1977), also known as ‘La Divina’ Although he had a short career spanning barely two decades, he revolutionized the world of opera; He imposed a style of singing that transformed the lyrical scene by combining text, music and performance like no one else. But his figure transcended the world of opera, because professional and emotional problems They began attracting the attention of the general press – he was also tasked with calling them when it suited him – and appeared on the covers with their luxurious and ostentatious lives.
With this, the ‘paparazzi’ phenomenon was born. Following her wherever she went, voicing her disagreements with the directors of the most famous theatres, she also discussed her private life, her divorce, her flirtation with the Greek billionaire Aristotle Onassis and the parties they attended – who left her to marry Jackie Kennedy – her decline in the world of opera, her disappointing return. , his failure in the movie world and even his retirement in his luxury apartment in Paris. He died early at the age of 53.
Throughout her career, Callas has carved an original tragic figure through inspiring novels, plays, books, unauthorized biographies (filled with two abortions, drug and alcohol consumption), and several films; the last of these, Mary, Today we are in the middle of shooting starring Angelina Jolie and directed by Chilean Pablo Larraín. In October, the city of Athens opened a Museum in his honor after twenty years of delay, and the city also named the theater where he debuted after him.
Callas was born Maria Anna Cecilia Sofia Kalogeropoulos in New York on December 2, 1923, to a family of Greek origin; But after her parents separated when she was 13, she returned to her mother, who was her worst enemy and never recognized her. She showed appreciation for Greece, where she grew up in squalor, studied with the Spanish Elvira de Hidalgo, and made her debut at the Athens National Opera in 1941. By wetting his characters, his art reached heights never reached before in the modern age. with An unprecedented dramatic feeling.
The diva diva rose from opera to universal popularity, with her private life commented on almost weekly; Her divorce from her first manager, industrialist Giovanni Battista Meneghini, who was almost 30 years her senior, caused as much ink as her scandals in the movies. When she decided to lose 40 kilos to look more attractive because of her image obsession. The character, Callas, ends her days in isolation after having eaten much more than the female Callas, leaving a legacy that is reflected in a discography that is as extensive as it is referenced, and which now reviews 74 characters in its centennial year. Came to comment.
The legend of Callas, who was admired, idolized and the owner of a very wide repertoire, was consolidated when her paths crossed in the life of the theater, opera and film director Luchino Visconti, who made her understand the importance of searching for the truth of the character. And so he did. Her favorite role was Norma.leading to maximum expression; He is responsible for the revival of many other forgotten Bel Canto operas. sonnambulaPremiered at La Scala in Milan in 1955 Directed by Leonard Bernstein and Visconti. Rehearsals took a very long time, and Callas, who was also famous for her impulsive temperament, had more than one fit of jealousy when she saw the complicity between the two directors, but in the end, a miracle was created and her performance became legendary.
Sometimes ‘La Divina’ behaved like a spoiled girl, but in front of Visconti and the most important musical directors of her time, she turned into a girl. best student. Obsessed with his characters, he was interested in voice and gesture, controlling them down to the last note. Like this sonnambula Callas argued with Visconti only once; Visconti insisted that she wear her best jewels to represent the hero. “But Luchino,” Callas said, “I’m supposed to be a peasant.” “No,” replied Visconti, “you are Maria Callas representing a peasant.”
He considered Norma a character very close to him, saying in 1961, “She might be the closest thing to my character.” Sacred She was already absorbed by Onassis before retiring from the stage. I wanted to start a family but He broke Callas’ heart by preferring the prestige of his wealthy friend, the widow Kennedy. His voice no longer answered him and Medea Pasolini’s attempt to persuade him to make films to pursue a career as an actor was a complete failure. He chose to retire, away from everyone except for a few master classes or a sad farewell tour.
Callas is a musical genius, a stage monster, a tragic heroine and an opera legend.
Brandon Hall is an author at “Social Bites”. He is a cultural aficionado who writes about the latest news and developments in the world of art, literature, music, and more. With a passion for the arts and a deep understanding of cultural trends, Brandon provides engaging and thought-provoking articles that keep his readers informed and up-to-date on the latest happenings in the cultural world.