B1670. André Tubeuf. Lost Divas. New York, Assouline, 2005. 120pp. A gloriously extravagant 10¾” X 14¾” hardbound edition featuring full-page photos of opera’s most sensational women of their time – Lubin, Garden, Heldy, Noréna, Caron, Calvé, Chenal, Kousnezoff, Raisa, Jurevskaya, Morena, Thorborg, von Mildenburg, Ursuleac, Pauly, Gutheil-Schoder, Onégin, Ackté, Ivogün, Cebotari, Schöne, Jokl, Destinn, Jeritza, Novotná, Leblanc, Dux, Eames, Farrar, Ponselle, Callas & Lina Cavalieri. Also includes a CD of excerpts from several of the above. 2-84323-735-1 9782843237355
“This lavish album of photographs, most of them dating from the early twentieth century, was evidently a labor of love for Smyrna-born critic André Tubeuf, who offers as prologue to the pictures - most of them taken from his own collection - a charming, evocative essay on haunting the second-hand bookshops of Paris in search of diva-related treasure. The title's designation of ‘lost"’is rather broadly defined here; the Tubeuf gallery, some thirty-odd portraits strong, ranges from such now-obscure novas as Maria Kouznetsova, Zinaida Jurjevskaya and Marthe Chenal to some artists who have never been very far out of the public eye, thanks to either their recordings or their post-retirement activities; certainly it is odd, at least for American opera fans, to classify the familiar virtues of Rosa Ponselle, Geraldine Farrar or Mary Garden as ‘lost’….many of the photos are authentic beauties - how else to describe LOST DIVAS covergirl Germaine Lubin? - and the whole enterprise has a certain wacky, over-the-top appeal. Included as a bonus is a CD of sixteen of the divas, all in coruscating form, with perhaps the most revelatory cuts delivered by the tragically short-lived Jurjevskaya, a vivid Jenufa, and the enchanting Lotte Schöne, aptly cast as Suppé's Galathea.”
- F. Paul Driscoll, OPERA NEWS
“This book tells all about a lost, authentically legendary species: the divas. They were the first movie stars before Pickford and Garbo, there was Geraldine Farrar, Lina Cavalieri, and Mary Garden. They were the most stunning opera singers, their personalities perhaps even bigger than their voices. Their success and their lives filled the gossip columns. Their fans loved them, grand dukes covered them in jewels. They represented both the splendorous excesses of an era of elegance and luxury, and its swansong.
There is almost nothing that survives of them today. Thankfully, their image remains and reveals all. Along with unpublished pictures of the greatest divas of this century, rediscover their voices in the accompanying CD produced specially for this publication.”
- André Tubeuf