Fill in the blanks, if you will:
"Even by the famously hot-blooded standards of opera, last week's passionate dramma giocoso at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City was positively -- well, operatic. In the fiery lead role was the mercurial lyric soprano ....renowned for leaving a trail of ill will in her wake wherever she goes. Opposing her were the forces of decorum and rectitude, represented by Met general manager ....The denouement was catastrophe......citing "unprofessional actions . . . profoundly detrimental to the artistic collaboration among all the cast members," summarily fired ... from this week's production of ...... and withdrew all future offers. In so doing, he set off grand international choruses of "It's about time.""
Surprise! It's actually a 1994 Time magazine story about Kathleen Battle's firing by Joe Volpe.
But you could be forgiven for reading a more contemporary tale into the blank spaces.
After cancelling her Met Roméo et Juliette a few days ago 'due to illness', Angela Gheorghiu told the world she "looks forward to coming back to the Met soon".
Now it looks as if that option is no longer open for the serial canceller, whose other recent Met no-shows include Don Carlos and Carmen.
The Met, say the New York Times, cited 'artistic reasons' - but they don't say whose.
Could it be that one party has finally reached the end of the line with the other?
**** UPDATE ****
The New York Times quotes Peter Gelb: her cancellations have become “an increasingly difficult problem for us,” and “I wish her well, and I’m sorry that things keep coming up that prevent her from performing onstage,”
AP have more from him: “I'm not ruling it out, but I think Angela really has somehow limited her own future options,” Gelb said in a telephone interview. “We have some future plans still in place with Angela. ... But you have to be there to sing.”