[This is a guest post by Gianmarco Segato, Retail and Editorial Co-ordinator]
Before the Feb. 11 performance of Nixon in China, soprano Maria Kanyova (who is singing the role of Pat Nixon), generously allowed us to take a few photos of her as she transformed herself from an everyday, contemporary opera singer into a 1970s icon remembered best for her perfectly-set blonde hairdo and smart red suit.
As she began applying her makeup (standard foundation, thick false eyelashes, and the pièce de résistance, deep crimson lipstick), we chatted a bit about her take on the First Lady. In the photos below, Cori Ferguson (head of wig and makeup crew) assists Kanyova with her wig and makeup.
According to Kanyova, Pat Nixon was a humanitarian, with a special concern for children. In the opera, this side of her personality comes to the fore most decisively in the Act II ballet. Pat is so overcome by the plight of the downtrodden female peasant in the ballet, that she rushes forward and tries to comfort the dancer.
Kanyova views this action as taking place in Pat Nixon’s head—she is acting out what she would have liked to do, but couldn’t due to the constraints of her position.
As the singer continued to prepare herself, the true moment of transformation came when the iconic blonde wig was placed on her head. With that wig she *is* Pat Nixon!
Posted by Gianmarco Segato / in 2010/2011 / comments (0) / permalink
Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001