La Rivale


“Maria Callas? You wait, she’ll soon have sunk into obscurity...”

Who said that? A certain Carlotta Berlumi. The name of this mysterious old woman means nothing to anyone, and yet she insists she had her moment of fame at La Scala and that she was Maria Callas’ greatest rival. She’d have us believe that the Greek diva used ruse and wiles to suppress her, but Berlumi got her own back and hastened her downfall.

Does Carlotta take her desires for reality? Did she, in Callas, find the scapegoat for her failures, the magic answer for her disappointments and frustrations?

Taking as his starting point this quirky, unforgettable character, Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt brings his peerless wit and sense of mischief to fill out the portrait of a little-known Maria Callas. And, as an expert on music and the intricacies of the soul, he invites us backstage to discover the secrets of the opera house and the human heart.