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A Lesson Refreshed and Another Inspired

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(Maria Callas: “Casta Diva” from Bellini’s opera Norma, live and role début in Covent Garden, London)

Now this is a flashback.  3月8日晚上我滿心期待地跑去看《鐵娘子》,因為梅莉史翠普。Thanks to Meryl Streep (and not the actual Margaret Thatcher), I got a quite unexpected catharsis.

(Aside from that, I just thought: oh, how I envy Thatcher! if the movie is accurate, she was able to go see Maria Callas’s debut as Norma in Covent Garden in 1952! Oh oh oh! although understandably the recording used in the movie is the 1960 stereo studio recording.)

Why the catharsis? perhaps it’s for a lesson refreshed — refreshed instead of learned, since I think this was something I knew all too well back in college but probably forgot that I actually have forgotten it over the years.  Thoughts and ideas: they should be what govern me.  Not that I ever have problems showing a warm and warming side to people; no.  What is relevant here is that, while my rational self tends to whip up great ideas shortly after some unexpected situation (crisis or not) hops out of no where to block a path, my irrational side somehow manages to maneuver — outmaneuver in effect — the former.  Now, that shall not happen again.

And a new lesson inspired: the new definition of flexibility is not one can grab a handful of impressive solutions out of a hat within a blink of second; rather, it is that one can shrug off whatever that comes the way, perhaps even with a chuckle.  Let the hair down and definitely lose the “one-must-make-square-pancakes-with-cleanly-sliced-edges” crap!

(啊對了,然後原來卡拉絲 (1923-77) 只比蘇莎蘭 (Joan Sutherland 1926-2010) 大三歲,天啊。蘇莎蘭在前述的現場演出(用清晰得不得了的咬字)唱戲份沒幾句的Clothilde。)

And below is the Callas recording used for the movie.  Shouldn’t we all feel so grateful for ever having Callas?

(Callas sings “Casta Diva,” excerpted from her second studio recording of the full opera, 1960)

And a feel-good clip: the “unreasonably good” Streep wins again.

(Sublime Meryl Streep wins in 2012 yet another Oscar for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady)


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