La Scala urges other houses to welcome back Netrebko

La Scala urges other houses to welcome back Netrebko


norman lebrecht

May 28, 2022

Anna Netrebko received multiple ovations Friday night at her return to La Scala.

Afterwards, La Scala’s sovrintendente Dominique Meyer said: I hope this evening is a sign for other houses to open their doors to Anna Netrebko. The opera audience today has shown what it wants.’

Total moral surrender.

First review here (in German).


  • Lothario Hunter says:

    Joking aside, and we’ve made more than enough jokes ourselves. Why are we surprised? This is Italy. These are the Italians. This is the only country in history to have switched sides in a world war – not once, but arguably, twice! (let’s say one and a half and call this settled). The first “civilized” country to have elected a pornstar to the Senate. The most corrupted country in the EU. The country who invented the Mafia.

    This is the birth place of Muti, who spoke publicly against Putin in Chicago, but is keeping a collection of awards bestowed on him by Putin and his gangs.

    It’s worth reposting some key facts about Muti and the Russians below, so that readers don’t forget what Italy and its main representatives, starting from Muti, are all about. And so that we don’t gang up on La Scala all at once, but spread the love a little bit.

    a) In October 2021 (pretty recently!), in the headquarters of the Russian Embassy in Vienna, with an official ceremony, Maestro Riccardo Muti was appointed Honorary Foreign Member of the Russian Academy of Arts

    b) The honor was awarded by the Russian Ambassador to Austria Dmitry Lyubinsky

    c) Since 1997 to the present day, the RAA (Russian Academy of Arts) has been headed by Zurab Tsereteli

    d) Zurab Tsereteli has been heavily criticized throughout the duration of his career, with public opinion heavily shaped by his involvement with the Russian government. In March 2014 he was reported to have signed a letter in support of the position of the President of Russia Vladimir Putin on Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine.

    e) Zurab Tsereteli is a great artist. One of his greatest creation, which will surely live on to immortality, is the Putin statue you can admire here:

    Would you accept an award from Zurab Tsereteli?

    But let’s go on. Muti has displayed the Russian Order of Friendship award on his biography for more years than people can count, naming Putin on it as the leader conferring such great honor to him. It was listed as the award that Muti is most proud of, along with the British Knighthood! And the Chicago Symphony printed all of that for people to read, for years after the invasion of Crimea, before they decided that Putin is a bad chap.

    Would you accept an award from Putin and list it on your resume? Would you list it after Russia’s invasion of Crimea?

    Muti is the biggest hypocrite in the world of classical music. He has more skeleton’s in the closets than the whole of Kensal Green. LaScala is made of the same mettle. Italy is Italy, the most corrupted of the so-called developed nations. And in the US, Chicago is after all the city of Al Capone.


    Period. Nothing more to say on the topic.

    For today 🙂

    • guest says:

      ‘Joking aside, and we’ve made more than enough jokes ourselves’

      Dare I ask, let’s put whataboutism aside? You’ve indulged more than enough yourself. Dominique Meyer is French, not Italian. Beating the nationality horse, and the wrong horse at that, is as wrong as claiming all this hullabaloo is because AN is Russian.

      ‘Period. Nothing more to say on the topic. For today’

      Please let’s make it forever. SD ain’t your personal hunting grounds, Hunter.

    • AD says:

      As an Italian, thank you for your moral judgement and the fact-checked and non stereotyped view of Italy and its citizens (all of them, obviously, since ancient Rome times).
      I hope you have the same unbiased view of your country and fellow citizens.

      • Rodin says:

        So how do you explain the double standard stand towards AN in your contry? We just want to understand.
        Because seeing the images of destroyed lives of ordinary people, poor, not so poor,old, children , young in Ukraine, versus this diva well fed in top designers clothes, enjoying the good life, and which refuses to blame Putin for what he is doing to the population in Ukraine, this is really disturbing those among us which still feel they must judge people on moral standards.
        May be we are an unadapting species in the world today
        We just want you to explain us where we are wrong

        • AD says:

          I was not really referring to the specific case of Ms. Netrebko and her involvement with La Scala (I could not care less actually), nor about the relationship between Mr. Muti (whom I don’t personally know) and Mr. Putin.

          I was just referring to the first paragraph of Mr. Hunter’s post. And, even if the appointment of AN by the La Scala management may be questionable (and I may even agree on this), ‘La Scala’ (the managers, or even the audience’) is not ‘Italy’ or ‘the Italians’.
          Sorry if I, as Italian citizen, got a bit offended by the plethora of misconceptions, stereotypes, and moral judgments from someone who probably has not even visited Italy once (let alone lived there).

          I hope Mr. Hunter (or you if you wish) could spend some time in my country (and not just the 5-day-visit-all tour Florence-Venice-Rome-Naples).
          Maybe you could discover (surprise surprise!) that we are not so bad.

    • Lord Kensington says:

      The old boy is a British Knight?

      What was the Queen thinking? Can SHE take it back?

  • Felix says:

    And three cheers for Vladimir Putin at la Scala, and also for Benito Mussolini while they’re about it. All together now: “In fascism’s the salvation of our liberty”.

  • Concertgebouw79 says:

    Does a Netrebko boycoty is essential and useful? Maybe yes…maybe not. If she said that she was not for the war today I’am not sure that she has to be in a black list. It’s the same thing for the tennis players. They are indivudual sportmen. Netrebko is not in an international competition like a football team or a delegation at the olympics. She’s an artist working outside of her country. It’s not so easy and her situation seems to be not exactly like the one of Gergiev.

    • Maria says:

      She can’t, as a Russian, just speak out as we can in the western world, and she would make it very bad for her family at home. Muti can say what he likes, but then probably no one is listening! Not an easy situation but being Russian she should not be discriminated against no more than other Russians are.

      • guest says:

        She lives with her family in Austria. Her sister lives in Denmark. Parents are deceased.
        She isn’t discriminated against because she is born Russian. She isn’t discriminated against at all. All this discriminated against talk reads like soap opera.

      • MuddyBoots says:

        Maria, you say this again and again despite being told repeatedly that it is not true. In addition to no family in Russia, Netrebko has been an Austrian citizen for many years, she says she pays taxes in Austria, she has a palatial home in Austria and one in NY and had (until she refused to sincerely apologize for very public support for violent separatists and Putin) she had a money machine in the West. She is much much safer than many Russians who have taken a stand against Putin’s war. She is not in personal danger nor is her family ; she is an opportunist who wants to play both sides.

  • Anthony Sayer says:

    Rubbish. In our value-free contemporary society, everyone is just trying to survive.

    • Amos says:

      Engaging in a bit of projection? No, “everyone” is not devoid of moral bearing however as proven again by the recent massacres in Buffalo and Uvalde and their aftermath their is a segment of society which is complicit. The notion that talent obviates the need to denounce immorality has been around for centuries and is as corrupt today as it was then. Given the contents of Harvey Sach’s last book on Toscanini I’m confident he would not have engaged AN to perform at La Scala or anywhere else.

  • Anthony Sayer says:

    Biased review. The Aargaue Zeitung shouldn’t compare the incomparable (No ‘r’ as it’s not in the genitive, here).

    • guest says:

      The thinking processes of fans are always a threat, if I am allowed to call it ‘thinking’ – others may call it knee jerk reaction. So every review not feeding your confirmation bias is biased. Perhaps the bias ain’t in _front_ of you, but _in_ you? Give it a thought.

      The author doesn’t compare singers, he compares the noise made by the audience, or rather by certain members of the audience. The La Scala claque sells themselves to highest bidder, this is nothing new. When you are in the audience, you can tell with a reasonable degree of accuracy where the noise comes from, and if from many or relatively few hands / throats. And he has a point – at the end of the concert, performers always go into the wings not once, but several times. They go into the wings and come out to take the applause, go and come out, and so on. This can go on for 10 min or longer until they decide to give encores. They don’t hug the stage for dear life, starting with the encores right away.

    • Aged Listener says:

      It’s ‘Aargauer’ in nominative, genetive, accusative, and dative. It does not vary. ‘Aargaue’ does not exist.

    • Brettermeier says:

      „ (No ‘r’ as it’s not in the genitive, here.)

      This is, of course, complete and utter BS. Why the eff would you even make this stuff up??

  • Pianist says:

    Everybody knows that committing troops to the Ukrainian territory is fraught with a nuclear catastrophe. The desperate fury, consequently, channels itself into what we know how to do best these days: demanding meaningless virtue signaling from Russian artists and cancelling them if they don’t make denunciations or don’t make them the way we like. As if Putin would end the war if Netrebko, Gergiev, or zillions of other musicians (Russian or from all over the world) were rattling off their condemnations 24/7. Heads of states have not been able to get Putin to stop, but Netrebko undoubtedly would have!..
    For me, this is a quintessence of our moral ambiguity. We aren’t willing to engage with an army that could nuke us and are cravenly looking on as Ukraine scrambles and loses ground. At the same time, we are bringing our wrath down on world-class musicians who can’t retaliate against us in any way and who have no connection whatsoever with any military activities. Meanwhile, the real conflict is raging on, regardless of whatever statements any artist has or has not made… Utterly shameful and immensely fatuous.

  • guest says:

    ‘The opera audience today has shown what it wants.’

    Dominique Meyer is showing himself remarkably obtuse for someone familiar with opera business. Opera audience ≠ Recital audience.

    Recital concert goers are a different species from opera goers – they are fans. Would any of you buy an expensive ticket to a recital of a performer you don’t appreciate? No you wouldn’t. Recitals are love fests – the audience is always ecstatic, fans are incapable of hearing anything that upsets them, particularly after paying a hefty price for the privilege. The hullabaloo isn’t proof of anything, it’s just people sharing the same echo chamber. Piano recitals are much beloved by certain performers because they are such a sure bet – only darlings in the audience, who don’t mind being fleeced, and the performer makes a packet.

  • MomeRath says:

    The audience was applauding her singing, not her character, which is reprehensible.

    • guest says:

      The audience was applauding neither her singing, nor her character, they applauded her presence – this is always the way with fans, it’s personality cult with them, and personality cult is always visual. Play to a fan a recording of her voice, just voice without the name tag or a photo, and they wouldn’t know her singing from Adam.
      The claque was applauding because they were paid to do so, nothing new, this is La Scala after all.

    • IP says:

      The applauding part of the audience consisted of 100 Russians who would have applauded even if she had not opened her mouth at all.

      • guest says:

        After listening to her concert on Youtube I am inclined to share your opinion. If that was ‘ravings’ as one writer has put it in one of the local newspaper rags, I am the Pope.

  • just saying says:

    If people don’t want to hear her perform, then don’t buy a ticket. Problem solved.

    • guest says:

      Problem solved if the performance in question is a recital. Indeed, recitals are just for fans and no one in their right mind would pay the overpriced ticket to listen to a performer they don’t appreciate. Problem unsolved if the performance in question is an opera performance – what if you want to attend because of another singer, or because of the opera itself, and she’s there to spoil the performance with her off pitch singing (to stay polite), her shrill top, her unfocused lows, her acting like she’s suffering of cramps all the time (what is this continuous grimacing, fist shaking, and belly clutching?) As long as she is cast, no other soprano can’t be cast in that role, that performance, another soprano who you might consider worth listening to because she’s less mediocre than AN.

      • Netrebko Fan says:

        They love Netrebko everywhere – Italy, France, all over the world. She is a universal treasure. The reviews are glowing, the fans are raving.
        Some get very upset and spend an entire day slinging mud at her. They would hate her even if she marched against Putin on the first day of war. Her singing has nothing to do with this, it’s simply human jealousy. As old as our world. Too bad for them, they should get a life.

        • guest says:

          Only the fans love and rave, dear. You included. The rest of the world uses their brains and musical education. As to the rest of your various armchair expertises, from operatic singing to psychology, they are best preserved at their place of origin (the armchair), and not let loose on a forum that, for all the trolls trodding the boards of late, this is still a classical music forum. You are embarrassing yourself but you don’t realize it.

          • Pianist says:

            Dear Guest, It is because of your ilk that some people think of classical music as dominated by white mysoginistic patriarchy. You keep using an argument from authority: demanding to know the professional status of those who may disagree with you and questioning their “musical education”, without ever establishing yours. This smug, elitarian approach is what turns people off from classical music in the first place

          • guest says:

            My dear dear, non-Pianist, welcome back. I should have guessed you can’t stay away for long. How nice to see you riding the woke hobby horse this time. You have discarded your old clichés ‘Russophilia’ (what were the other two again?) in favor of ‘white mysoginistic patriarchy.’ I guess this can be called a novel approach of sorts? And how nice to see you still have no musical education, and still try to deflect from your person by digging deeper that hole of yours, trying to throw the debris on others. You, like Netrebko Fan (pal of yours? you have materialized here so providentially) continue to pretend you have not read that musical invitation of mine 😉

            As to your reading of the tea leaves about what turns off people from classical music, let’s talk again when half of the inhabitants of this planet turn up here and complain. Norman will die of delight, if his servers won’t die before him. For now, it’s just you complaining, you who can’t be bothered to read any other posts on this site but political posts, as you had the dubious honor of informing me. You are hardly a point in case, dear non-Pianist. After my reply I expect your dear pals (or your alters) to storm the fort with complains so you won’t be alone anymore, but just in case you are as challenged in the math dept as you are in the classical music dept, I am allowing myself to point out to you that you and your pals aren’t half the population of this planet.

            P.S. I am ‘guest’, not ‘Guest.’ Guest with capital G is someone else.

          • Pianist says:

            Dear Guest, thank you for the greeting! The capital “G” in “guest” is not only a sign of the utmost respect for the hard work you have been doing, but also a reflection of your enlightening and commanding presence in this thread.

      • Netrebko Fan says:

        Would you care to share
        1) What performances of Netrebko that exhibited ‘her off pitch singing, her shrill top, her unfocused lows, her acting like she’s suffering of cramps all the time (you have personally attended? In other words, what first-hand experiences back up this judgment?
        2) What songs or arias was she performing? Was it a recital setting you dislike so much or is your opinion based on hearing one of her opera performance?
        3)What professional musical criteria in your view support pronouncing a world-famous performer “mediocre”?

        • guest says:

          Dear Anna’s agent or troll paid by the agent, or genuine fan (in which case I hope you accept my equally genuine condolences), you give your lack of musical education away in every other sentence. It pains me to repeat myself, but you are embarrassing yourself. My dear, opera is _not_ songs or arias. The fact that you reduce opera to this (and to make it worse, you mention songs _first_ , even before arias) tells me all I need to know about you. Funny you ask _me_ about professional musical criteria. ️️️. Let’s play a game. To prove us you know what you are talking about, give us examples of soprano excerpts in which the soprano has to sing longish bits below F-G above the middle C (examples from AN’s repertoire). With this you will be answering your own question about examples of AN’s unfocused lows (I would also add, a thick and ‘knoedeling’ sound). Then please give us examples of longish bits in which the soprano has to sing above the passagio either by putting pressure on the note, or singing in piano, which will answer your other question. To humour you at least in one respect, listen to AN singing In questa reggia in Waldbuehne concert for an example of wobble. This is more to educate you because I’m sure you don’t know how a wobble sounds. As to example of off pitch singing, we’ll tackle them after you prove us your musical knowledge, though I am afraid you are a hopeless case. If you don’t have a musical ear, you won’t know when a singer’s pitch sags. As to her poor agility, if your ear is hopeless, all you have to do is listen to her personal brand of ‘belcanto’ with the score on your lap, and see for yourself how much she simplifies. But I suppose this is too much to ask from you. Frankly, someone who takes the sophomoric drivel in Il Giorno Milano as for proof of anything, is hopeless. Funny you don’t ask that guy for his operatic credentials ️️. Anything would do to feed your confirmation bias ️

          P.S. And your logic ain’t much better than your non-existing musical knowledge, dear Anna’s agent or troll paid by the agent, or genuine fan. What use would it be to you, or anyone else, if I told you what performances I have personally attended? Unless you’ve attended those performances yourself, the point would be moot because it can’t be proved. For proof one has to consider AN’s live broadcasts, which are plentiful. You can admire her ‘acting’ in them too. How come I can remember but you, as a fan, can’t?
          As to world-famous, you confuse notoriety with excellency. Bocelli is world famous too but far from excellent – but he is excellent to his raving fans, this goes without saying.

          • Lucia says:

            Liszt, Paganini, Caruso, Callas – they all had raving fans. But of course those fans didn’t know anything. Nor do Netrebko’s fans. They are ignorant. They should consult you. But without asking for your credentials, of course. Because even if they did, and you provided them, it would be hard to verify them lol

          • guest says:

            My dear Netrebko Fan’s friend, I congratulate you to your understanding. Most of Callas’ fans don’t know anything. I don’t know about Liszt and Paganini, but nice to know you witnessed those exciting times yourself. Don’t know much about Caruso’s fan’s either, but I recall a review of Algernon St. John-Brenon (1907, if you care to check) complaining about ‘the intelligence of that noisy element in the opera house which clings to the rail, and the gods of whose artistic Pantheon are Caruso, Donizetti and garlic.’ Not nice of Algie. Make of it what you like. I dare say your friend the non-Pianist will rave against Algie as representative of the ‘white mysoginistic patriarchy’. If so I recommend to him to look up ‘mysoginistic’ first, but I might agree with the other two.

            Back to Callas, yes, most of her fans know only the name of her lover’s and that of her poodle’s. I too remember the first because he shares his first name with that of an Ancient Greek philosopher, but I don’t recall the last – I am not even sure she had a dog. The operative word being here ‘most’. Most of her fans, but not all. Those who don’t care about the lover and the dog, care about her singing. Back in the day there were among them a couple of very respected conductors and educated critics and arts historians, who commended her musicality, her diction, her taste, her gift of making _vocal_ theatre without degenerating in scenery chewing. I have yet to find such people among AN’s fans. Plenty of uneducated fanatics, yes, and plenty of scenery chewing to delight them.

          • Netrebko Fan says:

            “My dear Netrebko Fan’s friend, I congratulate you to your understanding.”. In English, we congratulate ON something, not TO something lol. I know…. too many comments to write, too little time. Such is the life of an educated music expert.

          • Netrebko Fan says:

            These are the 15 absolute greatest sopranos of all time:


            But never mind. Guest knows better. How entertaining! And so much negative energy… just to prove that someone isn’t a good singer. Obviously judging her by YouTube recordings, never been to her performance. A small wonder, tickets to hear her are so expensive not everyone can afford.

      • Netrebko Fan says:

        After her success in Paris, Anna received an all-embracing welcome from Milanese audiences last night. From the thunderous choruses of “Brava!” to the standing ovation at the end, the evening could only be described as rapturous. “Ovations and a bouquet of flowers thrown from the gallery were the backdrop to a success that, piece by piece, turned into a triumph.” (La Repubblica). “And then she began to sing: and as Carmen would say, le charme opère. That voice whose fascinating timbre is made extraordinarily fascinating thanks to a technique matched by very few today and which therefore allows for infinite chiaroscuro phrasing.” (Il Giorno Milano)

        • guest says:

          Dear Anna’s agent, you try too hard. No one cares about the attempts at creative writing of so called journalists. Twenty first century journalists sell themselves to the highest bidder, or support their employer’s agenda. All that it takes is a call to someone who has influence with La Repubblica and Il Giorno Milano, and from there, a few calls down the totem pole until it reaches the writer, who sits at the bottom of the pecking order. It isn’t any different at the NYT, Washington Post, The Guardian, Le Monde, FAZ, you name it. We all know the newspapers business is practically bankrupt and relies on huge infusions of cash for surviving. The people prepared to sink big money in it want something for their money, and that something is implementing the agenda they put under the nose of the chief editor. In this time and age, newspapers have turned into manipulative garbage. What’s surprising is that _some_ people still fall in the fancy tale of neutral journalism. Well, there’s no cure for stupidity. No one needs Il Giorno Milano to tells them what to think, unless they lack ears and a brain. For those who haven’t attended, the concert is on Youtube. That being said, Il Giorno could do with a better writer. ‘That voice whose fascinating timbre is made extraordinarily fascinating’ Dear me how sophomoric and repetitive, even a third form grader could do better than that. But what do you expect from a paper allegedly covering Politics, Economy, Sports, World (whatever that may be), fashion, gore news, and whatnot? Everything and the kitchen sink. You apparent expect for us to believe they have expertise in opera singing, rotflol. Sorry, but no chance. Their man covering ‘cultural’ events is probably a specialist in rap or zombie movies, if he is a ‘specialist’ at all, or if they have one to begin with.

          • Netrebko Fan says:

            This guest person is so aggressive, impolite, and uses personal attacks. He hates Netrebko so much he pops out and yelps at everyone who admires her talent. This is even unhealthy. He thinks the more he attacks her fans, the more professional and expert he sounds himself. You are only an expert if you write that Netrebko is a bad singer. And you are only an expert if you pick on women. So mysoginistic.… No love, only hate… He foams at the mouth 15times on the same subject and calls others trolls. Bet he is paid for by the Anti- Anna claque. Professionals are busy making music and practicing, they don’t have time to post rants so often. Bet wouldn’t know himself how to smoothly modulate from C major to F # major in eight bars using the four- part texture and conventional voice leading. Should calm down and stop assaulting people.

          • guest says:

            Dear Anna’s agent, person paid by the agent, or fan.
            To the worshiping fan everything short of worship comes across as hate. To the rest of the world who isn’t plagued by binary thinking, critique comes across as critical thinking. I see you continue with your armchair diagnosis even after I recommended to you to restrain your expertise in the field at its place of origin, the armchair. I also see you avoid my little musical challenge, while piling on _me_ as much ad hominem as you can, and complaining _you_ are a victim. Nice try but I haven’t forgotten. non-Pianist, and someone called Jane Christo (sp) also pretended not to see it. Do you all belong to the same club? I’m afraid you don’t make good advertising for AN’s fans.

            ‘modulate from C major to F # major- part texture and conventional voice leading’

            What in the name of all that is holy is _the above_? Did your friend the non-Pianist furnish you with this? Totally made my day and I’m sure it will made the day of anybody who happens to read it.

            ‘Professionals are busy making music and practicing’

            How interesting – this is exactly what I told your friend the non-Pianist less a week ago. I am sure it has not escaped your sharp intellect that yesterday was Sunday. People have off days, you know. We aren’t all slaves. Most people take Saturday-Sunday off, others Sunday-Monday.

  • MuddyBoots says:

    So La Scala found 2000 Putin-supporters to fill the house with cheers for one night. Not a problem in Italy as there are so many Russians allied with or dependent on Putin, as well as the local opportunists who feed at the oligarchs’ troughs. Meyer’s behavior is shameful but sadly unsurprising.

    • guest says:

      They don’t need 2000, significantly less would do – no need to sell the upper rings if they don’t want too. This concert was obviously organized just to provide a ‘justification’ for Dominique Meyer to come out with the nonsense ‘opera audiences want AN.’ No need to go all the way and find 2000 to fill the house, 1000 sheep will do, with the claque to show them the way. The fact that Dominique Meyer is so brazen to confuse recital goers (= fans) with opera goers in his statement, shows that they have reached the point where they care just minimally about appearances. Somebody has paid very handsomely for this ‘comeback’ – for Agresta to fall ‘ill’, for the ‘reviews’ in Monte Carlo and Paris, for Dominique Meyer’s statement. If nothing else, the war has unveiled how utterly corrupt the classical music ‘business’ is, on both sides. To add insult to injury, in most European states opera is subsidized from taxpayer money. European taxpayers don’t have any say in how their money is spent – they can just look on and kiss their money good bye to a corrupt system, with a a few egomaniacs, on both sides of the business, the performative and administrative side, trousering a significant cut from the funds allocated to the human factor, supported by the politicians who have made the whole racket possible.

  • william osborne says:

    In some ways it is a moral surrender, though I think Netrebko’s efforts to distance herself from Putin have at least some meaning. More to the point of moral surrender is that Europe continues to send enormous sums of money to Russia every day for energy while also offering very little military assistance. If we’re going to hold Russian artists to moral standards, shouldn’t expect the same from our governments? After all, ostracizing Russian artists has no effect on the war, while sending billions to Russia and withholding arms from Ukraine has a major effect. We demand moral standards only when it doesn’t cost us anything.

    Come to think of it, who has ever turned to the classical music world for moral standards? History shows with few exceptions, that the classical music world is the very embodiment of moral weakness and cowardice–all those people who from their earliest training are taught to march in step and obey the absolute authority of man waving his arms and scowling.

  • Jbl says:

    And what about Malcolm Martineau? Not a single word about him.

  • IP says:

    Apart from the (im)moral implications, I don’t remember anything vaguely similar having been done for any singer, ever (granting that she is a singer).

  • Bloom says:

    O tentatrice!

  • Yes Addison says:

    Shouldn’t Meyer be hoping other houses DON’T open their doors to her? For as long as she isn’t welcome in places she used to sing, he can have a much larger share of her magnificence. If her name still sells tickets, people are more likely to travel to Milan. She can become La Scala’s house diva in her years of her decline.

  • M McGrath says:

    Feed the mob what it wants. Where has that gotten us in the past 200 years? But then, Netrebko is a mob creation, fed by illusions and delusions on social media. She lives and dies by it. Many people go to see her because of her name while knowing nothing of opera or classical music. Reminds me of the old Pavarotti-in-the-local-stadium-sponsored-by-the-American-Express-Card phenomenon. Or the Three Tenors with Zubin Mehta…. But, hey, who are we snobs and morality popes to deny people their pleasure? In a world when Trump wins, the BBC loses, Putin cares not a hoot about invading a neighbor, and Marcos junior becomes president with Mama on the stage next to him wearing one of her 7,000 pairs of shoes… anything goes apparently. (Except, of course, if you or I infringing the law of the land – boom, we’d be in jail and fined.)

  • magdalenaguest says:

    I’m extremely disappointed by the decision of D.Meyer.
    He has no Moral.
    I hope he gets replaced soon.

  • Pianist says:

    The Ukraine war will end at some point, sooner or later. I wonder if current spite, malice, bans on artists in the free Western world would persist then, too. Or maybe we could ultimately consider letting our audiences enjoy music-making by diverse artists from all over the globe again. Based on their proven professional merits, not on their nationalities and/or their political statements.

    • Opinion says:

      Proven professional merits? Or proven or unproven special relations with some people administrating, promoting, praising etc? Can we rely on critics? Can we rely on spectators- admirers? At least we have youtube to judge.

  • bettino says:

    To surrender your morals, you’ve got to have possession of something resembling them in the first place.

  • George says:

    Here’s a list of Putin critics who have ended up dead:

    Everybody on this blog is condemning Anna Netrebko for not publicly speaking up against Putin.
    99 % here are using a Pseudonym / fake name for all of their posts. It’s so easy to criticize anonomously.

    So should we not be a bit more modest in our judgement of Anna Netrebko?!?!?

    • guest says:

      Shouldn’t you be a bit more modest in the use of question and exclamation marks? Definitively yes. No to the rest of your rant. Why should people give a damn on an article who has ‘suspected’ in the title, a word that you dropped in your rant because it doesn’t toe the line of your narrative? Why should people give a damn on a site calling themselves businessinsider, who doesn’t allow for cookie disabling, which they should according to law? Many Russians artists have spoken against Putin and the war. Evgeny Kissin comes to mind. Have you heard word of their demise? If so post a link to the news.

  • Bllue Swallow says:

    Can’t we just celebrate someone’s great musical talent and be happy for then when they receive multiple ovations? Certainly they do people some good, bring them love, and that’s why they are loved back. Sitting in front of a computer and badmouthing an international star neither makes the world a better place nor makes anyone happier. Hatred never wins.

    • guest says:

      Define ‘great musical talent’

      Accepting mediocrity for talent doesn’t make the world a better place, it makes it a more mediocre place. And can you spare us such platitudes as ‘making the world a better place’? Using them doesn’t make the world a better place either.

    • MuddyBoots says:

      Here’s a thought experiment for you Blue Swallow: Imagine you are sitting in the basement shelter of your apartment in Sievierodonetsk as Russian heavy artillery pounds civilian targets in your city. Now tell us whether a singer who encourage the public to vote for Putin, who handed money to the violent separatist doing Russia’s dirty work, and who posed with their “flag” is welcome to sing in your country. And if she is not welcome to sing in Ukraine, she should not be welcome to sing anywhere. No, she is not making the world a happier place, she is giving cultural cover to Putin’s Russian fascism/”Ruscism” aggression. Because culture is indeed used as window dressing by dictators and tyrants, just as it has been throughout history.

      • Bllue Swallow says:

        I am sorry this is what your propaganda tells you, MuddyBoots. You are as brainwashed as any Westerner who feeds exclusively off CNN and New York Times. I am sorry there are no other sources, as you have banned not only Russian artists but also Russian news from all platforms. And now you are being duped by the only type of news you are allowed to consume – glorification of the murderous regime in Kiev. And this is why there is so much hatred.
        People in Donetsk and Lugansk have been sitting in shelters for 8 years. In a war, people sit in shelters.The shells fired by the Ukrainian army have killed countless women and children of the Russian- speaking population on those territories, and nobody in the West has moved a finger to react in any way – or to ban Ukrainian artists for the crimes. Culture is now a window dressing to clear the Western stages and concert halls of the best-selling Russian artists. So that the home-grown mediocrities would finally have room to launch or promote their careers in the absence of fierce competition that Russian artists always pose. Using the Ukraine war as a pretext.

  • MuddyBoots says:

    Clips are now on youtube:

    Truly awful. Leaving politics completely aside…the singing is simply hideous.

    • Anonymous Bosch says:

      Kam dieses seltsame Geräusch von meinem Computer oder muss ich den Installateur anrufen?

    • guest says:

      What language(s) is she supposed to sing it? I recognized one aria (I think – though by no means sure from the caterwauling), and if that is French (or even Italian, supposing she has wanted to humor the locals), I am the Pope. Sounds like the vocalizing of overly ambitious student.

    • guest says:

      The guy who wrote in that local newspaper rag about the audience’s ‘raving’ must have smoked something extremely strong before writing his article. Journalists and papers have turned to whores, selling themselves to the highest bidder.

    • Eunice Burns says:

      You’re being generous.

  • Netrebko Fan says:

    For a professional, you have too much time on your hands to write anti-Anna rants. You have posted on this subject 13 times, more than anyone else. Clearly you are paid to disparage the great Anna. Hope the money is worth being the anti-Anna troll. So sad there are people like that. Totally blinded by hatred. No love. I am going to book online tickets for your own not-armchair-critic- professional performance in a prestigious venue. Just tell me when and where lol

    • Lucia says:

      Netrebko Fan, don’t get so hard on guest. This thread turned out to be so fascinating not the least due to his unswerving tenacity to go on the same rampages with different adversaries. This reminds of the rondeau form in music. Everyone else is an ‘episode’ here, but the guest is the real mainstay…. Or, in musical terms, he is truly the refrain.

    • guest says:

      My dear Netrebko Fan, I didn’t count my comments, but I counted my replies to your and your friends’ replies. Seven in total, this included. Perhaps you should reply less to other people’s comments? And write just one reply instead of three to the same comment? And refrain from calling in your buddies – the non-Pianist and Lucia – to help you with replying? You kept me quite busy between the three of you. Do you always hunt in pack and communicate using thumbing? And you aren’t yet done, you and your buddies still go on with stocking the fires in that thread. As I said there, your logic ain’t much better than your non-existing musical knowledge. You reply to people, then complain of getting replies to your replies. I understand you can’t like having your lack of, well, everything, exposed to everyone, but if so you shouldn’t have replied in the first place, or written more intelligent replies. Don’t blame the messenger after you asked him to bring in the message.

      I am sorry dear Netrebko Fan, but you trolls on this site do everything in your power to stick out like a sore thumb – you don’t have any musical knowledge, you are clichéd to a fault, you use ad hominem, and you hunt in packs. If you want to blame somebody, start with yourself. Decent people don’t take kindly to trolls, and since this war has started, people had rather more of them than usual, and our patience with your attention seeking act runs thin. The more you infest classical music boards with your presence, the more you confirm what everybody else already suspected, namely that Putin’s Russia has used classical music as propaganda instrument for decades and merely continues with the practice in a more aggressive way. I much prefer Putin’s old approach to arts – with the old approach you had the chance, now and then, to witness a genuine artist, or artist in the making. With the new approach, we get strident activism from African trolls to trolls sporting ‘musical’ monikers like your friend the non-Pianist. And you wonder that people’s reaction to all this activism wavers between mild amusement, boredom, and temptation to expose you for what you are? And now you were exposed, your pout. Your pouting is hardly more endearing than your strident activism and your pearls of wisdom à la ‘They love Netrebko everywhere, she is a universal treasure.’ You sorely lack a filter, really.

      Next time when you feel like infiltrating a ‘specialized’ community remember this is what everybody will think first, given your lack of knowledge: ‘How come he or she is here? This community is not a natural fit for someone so obviously divorced of any conceivable musical knowledge.’ Answer: He or she is here because he or she was summoned, armed with a few clichés, and let loose on the hunting grounds aka comment section. You can deny this until you get a collective finger cramp, but the fact remains, this specialized community wouldn’t be on your and your buddies’ radar in normal times, not even with google help.

      P.S. Just in case you haven’t noticed (your non-Pianist buddy hasn’t or pretended not to), there are three ‘guest’ users, one spelled with with capital ‘G’, the other two with lowcase ‘g’. Needless to say, I am one of the latter group.

      P.P.S. My bet is you and your buddies will trip over yourselves to thumb down this comment. Lol. Grow up – if you can.

      • Lucia says:

        “Next time when you feel like infiltrating a ‘specialized’ community”

        Oh my!. You have lumped three people together as some sort of an organized “conspiracy” against you! I am not Pianist’s friend, but would be honored to befriend him. He was so right to point out how “gated” and arrogant the classical music community sounds when you erupt with impassioned but meaningless screeds on its behalf. You see trolls everywhere, and any dissent is “infiltration” of your private fiefdom. You would actually do well in Putin’s Russia.

      • Netrebko Fan says:

        Mansplaining, again. Same old, same old.
        By the way, C major and F# major are tritone-removed musical keys, if you have ever heard this professional lingo. I meant I bet you can’t modulate from one to another through closely related keys in eight bars using a correct voice leading in four-part harmony. People do it in good music schools. Only works when you get off the armchair lol
        Yawn. I better go and listen to Netrebko again.

  • Miss Tina says:

    Netrebko should have been banned because of her dreadful voice a long time ago..However, it seems that not even her political views can stop her from performing nowadays. Shame on La Scala and shame on Meyer. Can we see and listen to some new voices, please?! ..People really need to understand that popularity does NOT equal excellency, not at all.