Festival shock: Angela Gheorghiu cancels Faust

Festival shock: Angela Gheorghiu cancels Faust


norman lebrecht

April 03, 2014

She had agreed to step in for Anna Netrebko at Baden-Baden. Now she’s having second thoughts. Here’s what Angela Gheorghiu has just posted:

I am very sorry to have to turn down the offer from the Baden-Baden-Festspielhaus to perform in Faust in June this year.

It has always been one of my principles not to sing in a new production that has not been conceived from the very beginning for me. It is also rather unusual for me to have to replace another singer. Nevertheless, I have tried to make it possible and to be available for the whole period but unfortunately I have not been successful in doing this.

I sincerely hope to have the chance to be invited to a new production in Baden-Baden, that will be created for me, in future.

I am also so much looking forward to my New Year’s Eve Gala Concert in Baden-Baden!

Angela Gheorghiu


angela gheorghiu baden




  • RW2013 says:

    me, me, me…!

    Gounod didn’t compose Faust for you either so why bother singing it at all?

  • Derek Castle says:

    …..for me, me, me!

  • Maybe they need to go for someone happy to sing the role and who can do it rather than simply looking for a famous name.

    Mmm, I here Baden-Baden is very pleasant in June…

  • The words that come to mind would not be appropriate for this blog. She gives narcissists a bad name.

  • Yes, it’s true: This time, she really has disappeared up her own @rse. Good riddance.

  • David Boxwell says:

    It has always been one of my principles not to clock in at a new job that has not been especially created for me. I also do not get out of bed for less than 10,000 dollars a day.

    As a result, I am unemployed and unemployable.

  • Brian says:

    Ah, that’s the Angela we know and…well, not exactly love, but her relentlessly solipsistic worldview and complete lack of self-awareness is infallibly amusing.

  • Alan Fairs says:

    I’m glad she has made this stand. It will help me next time I receive news of my car insurance premium which is boosted because they think of opera singers as being ‘entertainers’. Clearly this can no longer be regarded as being true.

  • Alan Fairs says:

    She’s carrying the concept of the 4th wall rather too far.

  • Thom Stanbury says:

    New Year’s Eve isn’t new either.

  • Marguerite Foxon says:

    What’s wrong with this production that these two singers suddenly change their mind about singing for no apparent reason, just vague references to principles etc?

    • Barbara says:

      I doubt there is anything wrong with this production. La Netrebko also bailed out of Faust at Covent Garden very late in the day because, apparently, she feels, on reflection (!) that the role is not appropriate for her.

      Miss Gheorghiu cancelled because she is an overrated diva who hasn’t yet realised that she is past her sell-by date. Last year, at the ROH, she barely sang during the performance of La Rondine that I attended – presumably believing that merely turning up justifies her (no doubt extortionate) fee.

      I – and many others – actually wrote to Kasper Holten at the time and he replied that he heard what I’d said, and assured me that everyone’s feedback would be taken ‘very seriously’. I don’t know whether the ROH currently has any plans to engage her again, but I for one won’t bother to turn up even if she does.

  • Tristan says:

    no one really should regret that the most overrated singer of our time has cancelled in Baden-Baden. Her last appearance as Adriana Lecouvreur in Vienna was such huge disappointment like a few years earlier in London. I am sure B-B will find a good replacement like London and Vienna, no one will miss her!

  • rebeccarossa says:

    well she will quickly find that there are many younger singers who would be happy to perform in Baden Baden or whatever and as she ages she may wish she hadn’t been so particular LOL

  • Sandra says:

    I will start to hate all these stars!!!They behave as they want..One day such stars has to take a responsability for this! I would like that some one would kick their a**es!!!So many good singers arround, but these few “The greatest singers” of the world they want to sing everything.It’s so not fair. It would be so nice that such festivals as baden baden or zalsburg would promote new real talents. Unfortunately when they do this, the new opera stars aren’t even half as good as all Netrebkos, Dammraus and ect…is this kind of politiks to let us to think that there are no better singers int this world?? p.s. sorry for my messy thoughts…

  • grahamophone says:

    At what point does one change from being grateful for every scrap of meat they can can get to demanding only the finest filet? However, I think an artist needs to make their own rules, set their own limitations – nothing wrong with that! If that’s her rule — to only sing roles in productions designed with her in mind — then she should follow it. Her only mistake was accepting to be Netrebko’s replacement in the first place (and then citing that as her reason for backing out — the scheduling schtick is much more elegant).

    There are 100s of sopranos out there who will surely be willing to accept such a challenge. Best of luck to whoever that may be!

  • Rodney Punt says:

    Oh my. What a confession and unflattering self-revelation. Baden-Baden is a charming town for a fresh, grateful singer less self-absorbed to spend some time in singing that role. Good luck to the impresarios in their search for just such a singer.

  • I would like a shot of that ego, or, on second thoughts, maybe not.

    Did the great Callas make similar demands? I’m pretty sure La Stupenda didn’t.

  • RD says:

    The Facebook status that this article quotes has been taken off Angela’s page, in the last hour. I also noticed that even slightly negative comments on that status update were mysteriously disappearing throuought the time it was up.

  • MarieTherese says:

    Thanks to Ms Netrebko and Ms Gheorgiu, there are young singers who get to have a chance to replace THEM.

  • Chris says:

    She rocks

  • Emmy says:

    I am also so much looking forward to them releasing her from her New Yearโ€™s Eve Gala Concert in Baden-Baden!

  • Melisande says:

    A thought: may be it’s high time for a visit to a psychiatrist in order to save a once truly wonderful voice and to work on and analyze the destructive powers of a private character. Life is short, also for opera singers.

  • Edgar Brenn says:

    She will not be missed, and she can look at herself in her mirrors at home, which will call out to her “moi, moi, moi, moi, moi, moi, moi….. This kind of narcissism, it seems to me, should be treated in a closed psychiatric ward.

  • Devon Hedethshtet says:

    Oh dear.. how shall they ever manage to proceed? Faust of all things.. such a terrible difficult opera that absolutely no one else in the world could manage well… Such a dear, to know that her artistic excellence would simply be wasted in performance not specifically designed for her! Heaven knows, no one should have to perform in such a horrible sordid situation! Besides, what would happen to poor Anna Netrebko? Surely if Angela had stepped in, it would have ruined Anna’s chances to ever work again; after all, Angela IS absolutely perfect at everything and should allow the rest of us poor pitiful mortals to have at least SOME small chance at the stage. Certainly, we’ll never be worthy of singing in a production with her, but we can all hope and dream, can’t we? ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Viktorija says:

    I can replace her, no problem! Everyone says I look and sing like Netrebko ๐Ÿ™‚

    My email viktorija.miskunaite@gmail.com

  • jean2371 says:

    I gather from her message that she was affronted that she had not been first choice for this production. She should remember that regardless of her success, a singer’s time at the top of the operatic tree is limited!

  • Angela Gheorghiu has just posted: … “It has always been one of my principles not to sing in a new production that has not been conceived from the very beginning for me.”

    If that is indeed true, she should forget about Faust and all the standard repertoire and instead devote herself exclusively to commissioning and premiering new works! There are plenty of worthy living composers who would be thrilled to have that high profile opportunity.

  • Peter says:

    It’s part of singers’ trade, to act like that, it doesn’t surprise us I guess. A rather extreme specimen though. Why do I think that a pianist would never say such a thing (while arguably do more amount of work per square second than a singer) ?

  • Monica says:

    It’s so sad to read all these hateful comments! Get a life! Work on your own happiness!

    I’m sure you can use your time better than to put down others! Angela has the right to refuse whatever role she doesn’t want! Is her decision, who are you to judge her? Maybe you should work on being successful in your own lives and STOP HATING others who are ahead of you! Good luck with this project! Don’t feel compelled to replay, I don’t waste my time for poison!

    Have an awesome day! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Derek Castle says:

      She has not given any convincing reason for standing down. Perhaps she didn’t like the costumes or the jewelry box. Of course she has a right to quit, but it would be interesting to know if any financial compensation was involved – on either side. She didn’t even bother to get a doctor’s certificate – which I guess isn’t too hard when you’re a star. Why do you bother to read Slipped Disc, when you know we are all trolls?

    • Derek Castle says:

      I’ve got it now. You meant ‘reply’, not ‘replay’!