The event, which was free to the public, included an up-close interview with
Franco Zeffirelli, performances from his Metropolitan Opera colleagues, and a
signing of a limited edition of a hagiographical book about his Met
productions as well as other vast memorabilia that documents the career of
the award-winning producer and director of opera, theatre, film and
Franco Zeffirelli interviewed by Ira Siff
Franco Zeffirelli entered the reception to a standing ovation from his
fans, friends, and colleagues. Among audience attendees was the former
General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera, Joseph Volpe, who had a long,
successful collaboration with Franco Zeffirelli, at the Met. The press
coverage was vast and extended to the Italian news media. Independent film
Director Abel Ferrara had his film crew cover the entire event for a
documentary he is shooting on Franco Zeffirelli. Then the fabulous voices of
the Metropolitan Opera house came, both old and new. Aprile Millo was the
gracious hostess and a longtime friend of Franco Zeffirelli, with whom she
had many memorable performances with at the Metropolitan Opera house.
Marcello Giordani performing Nessun Dorma from Turandot.
Marcello Giordani performed the aria Nessun Dorma magnificently,
dedicated to both Franco Zeffirelli and to the late Luciano Pavarotti. Later,
Marcello Giordani joined Aprile Millo for the love duet from Act I of
Tosca. Their voices were golden and clearly gave flight to Franco
Zeffirelli’s visions of opera. Baritone Mark Delavan performed as well to
the delight of the audience. The performances were followed by an interview
with Ira Siff. Franco Zeffirelli, as he settled into the sage green chair
that awaited him, spoke fondly of intriguing memories and kept the audience
captivated in the style of all Zeffirelli productions.
Diane Malone © 2008
All photos: © Caroline P.
[Reprinted by permission of the author from Metroway — The Online Guide to
Everything New York.]
Aprile Millo and Marcello Giordani
performing from Tosca.