Customer Reviews for

The Toughest Show on Earth: My Rise and Reign at the Metropolitan Opera

Average Rating 4.5
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  • Posted March 27, 2011

    I Also Recommend:

    A little self congratulatory - but worth the read!

    I came upon this as part of research on a writing project. It's not as great as Johanna Fiedler's MOLTO AGITATO or W. Murray's FORTISSIMO, who both are also very entertaining reads. What I mostly don't Like about Joseph Volpe's biography is the self congratulatory satisfaction with which he narrates his account - for example when he describes a backstage walk he has been taking and everybody in the company just happens to love him so much. Too smug not just here, but a few places as well. And a tad dry elsewhere. I also don't like how much in love he is with the rich patrons of the house. That must be because he has come from less privileged backgrounds and views himself as a success. But there are gems and highlights in here - especially when he describes his dealings with stars and agents or how particular problems were solved. If you want to know what goes on inside the head of an impresario, it's a good place to start.

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