Maria Callas’ Last Tour
In 1973 pianist Robert Sutherland was invited to help Maria Callas prepare her comeback tour. He travelled with her for 15 months and then worked with her in the studio until shortly before her death.
This book depicts Maria Callas and Giuseppe di Stefano in their doom-laden 1973-4 concert tour. This attractive and candid memoir provides one of the best available snapshots of these two gifted and artists and their attempt to prove the world and themselves that their ageing voices were still amazing. Sutherland evokes other people’s paranoia–that of the older accompanist, Ivor Newton, whom he eventually replaced, that of Callas and her circle–and successfully portrays himself as a humble servant of their music. He recalls Callas saying: «A diva is a diva … a great personality. Her achievement depends on the strength of her will when she knows what she must do. I am a diva. My audiences love me but they would not want me as the girl next door. I don’t care about the response of the critics. What matters is the feeling you receive from the people who are paying a high dollar to hear you sing.» —