A film celebrating the legendary voice of opera singer Maria Callas, with newly colorized and remastered footage, will be screened in cinemas across France on Sunday to mark the centenary of her birth.
The film “Callas – Paris, 1958” uses footage taken during her first performance at the sumptuous Paris Opera on December 19, 1958. This is the first time that a Ms. Callas concert can be viewed in color.
The event was attended by celebrities of the time, including Charlie Chaplin, Brigitte Bardot, Jean Cocteau, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor and the French president at the time, René Coty.
Ms. Callas appeared on stage with jewelry worth a million dollars.
During the concert, she sang the beautiful aria “Casta Diva” from one of her signature roles, Norma (from Bellini’s opera of the same name), as well as the haunting scene “Miserere” from Verdi’s Il Trovatore and “Una voce poco fa”. » from the Barber of Seville.
She culminated the evening with Act II of Tosca by Puccini.
Born in Manhattan on December 3, 1923 to Greek parents, her grace, talent and temperament destined her for a life in the spotlight.
In 1958, she reached the height of her fame, but perhaps not her notoriety.
She would have a widely publicized romance with Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis, who later married Jackie Kennedy.
“Callas – Paris, 1958”, directed by Tom Volf, was made possible thanks to the rediscovery of the original concert images.
“In 2021, in a basement in Athens, I made an incredible discovery: the original reels of a historical pageant; The beginnings of Maria Callas in Paris,” said Mr. Volf Classic FM.
“After years of restoration work, I am honored to present this film not only because it is the first time audiences will see a color performance by Maria Callas, but also because it gives us all the chance to experience what it was like. I would love to be in this opera house in 1958 and spend the night with the greatest opera singer of all time.
The film will be screened in a selection of cinemas across France on Sunday December 3. You can check here if it is broadcast in your region. Tickets cost €18.
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