“I had an awful seconda donna for my opera, Ciro in Babilonia. Besides being hideously ugly, she had the most wretched voice. After trying it with the utmost care I discovered that she possessed one single good note. So I wrote an aria for her in which she had nothing but this note to sing. All the rest I put into the orchestra, and as it was liked and applauded, my singer of the one note was delighted with her triumph.” — Gioachino Rossini

(Hat-tip to an anonymous poster on Parterre.com.)

Two Cats Get Down

September 17, 2010

Though this has made the rounds before, it has been called to my attention again today and it strikes me more forcibly than ever that this is the funniest performance of the perennial Rossini-attributed favorite precisely because of the deadpan delivery. Sometimes not trying too hard to please is very pleasing.

(The boys are from a Parisian choir called Les petits chanteurs a la Croix de bois.)