Soprano as writer: de Niese goes to HuffPo
The Huffington Post has a new contributor from the world of classical music: the soprano Danielle de Niese has posted her first contribution. This entry is basically a first-person "how I got here" narrative, giving little indication of what perspective de Niese is going to be offering in future posts. The Huffington Post is hardly the forum for the kind of direct fan communication Joyce Di Donato offers on her blog, but I can't quite imagine that de Niese will be weighing in on the issues of the field, either. (And will she be writing it herself? Stay tuned.)
[UPDATE: de Niese has written to assure me that she is indeed writing the column herself; my respects.]
This is another sign of the uncertain esteem in which the mainstream media holds the opera world: glamorous! exotic! what exactly was interesting about it again? I'm happy for any sign of wider interest in the world of opera; I just hope that a singer's reflections on that world help sustain that interest. In the best-case scenario, an artist's writings about what he or she does can be compelling windows into a field and a career (take Jeremy Denk, whose blog has so greatly enhanced his career that he now appears to be too busy to contribute to it as much as he once did). In the more normal scenario, they trace the familiar contours of the expected. And why was de Niese selected instead of, say, Thomas Hampson? That question, one hopes, might be answered by her future contributions.
The Huffington Post, of course, does keep an eye on opera; remember that before she was Arianna Huffington, Arianna Stassinopoulos wrote an undeniably compelling, though controversial, book on Maria Callas.
Some other notable musician-blogger/writers include Alan Gilbert, who blogs on MusicalAmerica.com; the pianist Stephen Hough, who has a blog on the website of The Telegraph; or the composer John Adams (whose site appears to be down today; I trust this is a temporary glitch). What other notable artist-writers are out there; and who would you most like to hear from?
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