Placido Domingo in Il Postino in Paris

Placido Domingo in Il Postino in Paris with the LA Opera


After the final curtain at the June 20 European premiere of “Il Postino” at the Theatre du Chatelet in Paris, Placido Domingo and the rest of the opera’s cast joined guests in one of the historic theater’s grand reception rooms. Domingo had just sung the role of the Chilean poet Pablo Nerudo, with Charles Castronovo starring in the title role of the Italian postman, as both had done a year ago at the opera’s world-premiere in Los Angeles.

And just as Domingo does in Los Angeles, where he serves as the LA Opera’s general director,  the opera superstar greeted his army of admirers with the grace, warmth and charm I’ve seen him display over and  over again, no matter how many people converge upon him, asking for a picture or an autograph.

Included in the Paris crowd were LA Opera supporters who ventured to Paris to see the production once again. Noticeably absent was Daniel Catan, the opera’s composer, who came to last year’s world-premiere, which opened the 2010/2011 LA Opera season.

Sadly, Catan passed away in April. but his widow, Andrea Puente Catan, was there, along with Eva Stern and LA Opera chairman Marc Stern; Antonio Skarmeta, author of the book, “Ardiente Paciencia” on which both the Oscar-winning film and opera were based; Amanda Squitieri and Cristina Gallardo-Domas of the original Los Angeles cast; plus LA production director Ron Daniels, costume and set designer Riccardo Hernandez, projections designer Philip Bussman, choreographer David Bridel, communications director Gary Murphy and Jason LaPadura.  

More LA Opera patrons came a week later, including LA Opera board president Carol Henry and her husband, Warner Henry.  Both the LA Opera and the Chatelet co-produced the opera, along with Vienna’s Theater an der Wein.  

Aside from the chance to see this opera, which ended with a standing ovation from the Paris audience, the first group got a special bonus for traveling to France that week, as June 21 is the date the country celebrates its Fete de la Musique, when vast numbers of musicians – professional and otherwise – welcome the summer by performing at cafes, restaurants and all throughout the streets.  And while few people have the talent of the Il Postino cast, it’s a super-fun night for music-lovers in France.

For further details about the June Paris opening with Placido Domingo in Il Postino, readers can find my LA Times story in the “Culture Monster” section here

To read about the LA Opera’s 2011/2012 season-opening celebration coming up on Sept. 17, which includes a gala dinner, performance of “Eugene Onegin,” and an after-party with the LA Opera’s “Aria” group and Emmy Rossum of “Shameless” as honorary chair, click here.

Photos from top: Placido Domingo in Il Postino in Paris, greeting well-wishers at the post-opera reception; Andrea Puente Catan with Antonio Skarmeta, author of the book that inspired the opera and the Academy Award-nominated movie, “Il Postino.” More pictures from Paris in the gallery below.



40 Photos of A Glamorous Russian-Style White Night LA Opera Opening Night

Placido Domingo and Emmy Rossum Open the LA Opera Season in Style

Los Angeles Philharmonic Gala: Rhapsody in Blue

Hammer Museum Gala: Bruno Mars, Stars, Artists & Collectors


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Placido Domingo in Il Postino in Paris

Published Sept. 9, 2011 – Ellen Olivier, Society News LA