While researching Mission, her recent Agostino Steffani recording, Cecilia Bartoli discovered many of the composer's documents were taken to the Vatican on his death. Frustratingly, she couldn't get her hands on any of them. Speaking to journalist Ljubisa Tosic recently, she said "I definitely wasn't prepared to wait until the doors of the Vatican opened to me. The CD would probably still not have appeared." So she completed her Steffani investigations without a visit to the Holy See.
A planned concert for Pope Benedict, called off when La Ceci rightly refused to answer an overly-personal question, may not have helped her cause.
However her Vatican dreams are not yet over: "I believe there are still scores by Monteverdi undiscovered in the Vatican but it is not easy to get access to the documents. You need the right connections and as yet I don't have them".
Could opera-loving Pope Frank turn out to be Cecilia's inside man?