Joyce DiDonato: ‘When it gets really hard… well, there are other jobs’

Joyce DiDonato: ‘When it gets really hard… well, there are other jobs’


norman lebrecht

November 02, 2019

The diva posts a letter to her younger self:

If it gets really tough, she says, you could always go into arts administration…

Oh, surely not!


  • Marji says:

    This is vintage Joyce. She has always been encouraging to young artists. She is a great role model.

  • FrauGeigerin says:

    She is an angel. No-one nicer on and off the stage. It is a pleasure working with her.

    • Benedict Thompson says:

      That’s great to hear. She must be not only one the most inspiring singers around , but one of the most inspiring human beings around.

    • Richard Cumming Bruce says:

      A friend of mine, now sadly dead, who worked backstage at Covent Garden said that she is an utterly dedicated professional who has the most attractive personality of anyone he ever had the privilege of working with, in 35 years.

  • Peter says:

    Just an opinion – JDD is the typical “American role model”, the way she does the masterclasses at Julliard, telling everybody they are the best in the whole world (even if some do not have any future whatsoever in opera), always making her statements sound so imposing and compassionate, the way she poses in a firm manner even if there is nothing important going on – so sorry but she can’t fool me, her voice sounds like the one of a sheep now – be-e-e-e-e, have never heard such a disturbing vibrato ever! A mistery of opera today, 40 years ago she would have been singing Giovanna in Rigoletto, now she is an “opera star” :))
    As she well said in an interview, she did not expect to be much more than a regional singer, it is a surprise for her as well… people today got so superficial and so easy to fool…
    Sorry for being so frank… Cheers!

  • Aaron Herschel says:

    Mrs Donato is an inspiration for everybody out there who struggle with their career or life.
    Here you can see how its done and she can serve as an inspiring role model not only in music but in life.
    Oprah Winfrey springs to mind…aren’t we lucky to have such wonderful role models who fought all the way against all adversities ?

  • Admin Arthur says:

    How utterly insulting to her colleagues in arts administration who have “really tough” jobs that involve planning seasons, raising money, and selling tickets…all so artists like her can get hired.

  • Danielle says:

    You’ve totally misaligned the content of the message; what she said was that it’s impossible to know when you start studying music what part of the biz you’ll end up in, based on what you find best suits you and your skills; that they’re all worthy career paths and to approach everything you do with integrity and joy.
    It really does not help anyone to reduce these sentiments to clickbaity headlines like you have.

    • david hilton says:

      But it’s highly misleading to young singers to suggest to them that there is any likelihood that they will end up in ANY part of the music biz. Nothing is harder than landing a paying job in arts administration. And for anyone to imply that a failed singer can . “always” get a post in arts administration is just setting someone up for a further round of professional disappointment.