Deborah Voigt will reflect on personal and career triumphs since her controversial clash with Covent Garden.
Celebrated dramatic soprano Deborah Voigt has sold her autobiography to HarperCollins for publication in 2013. With the working title True Confessions of a Down to Earth Diva, the memoir, says Voigt, will not shy away from her battle with obesity and the impact it has had on her career.
“It’s time for me to step up and share my story”, she said in a statement, “because I know there are lots of other people, especially women, who are out there suffering in silence.”
The American Voigt, now 50, made international headlines in 2004 when she was dismissed from a Covent Garden production of Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos. Although Ariadne is one of her signature roles, she was forced to leave the cast because she was too large to wear a revealing black dress that the director deemed crucial to the staging concept.
At that time, for health reasons, she had elected to undergo gastric bypass surgery in order to assist in her weightloss – a great risk for a Wagnerian singer requiring such strong abdominal and diaphragm support to project the voice.
Despite the public outrage caused by the Royal Opera House’s decision, Voigt tackled the title role in the same production in 2008, four years later and 100 pounds lighter.
Jonathan Burnham, the publisher of HarperCollins, describes the forthcoming book as an “unbelievably honest narrative of a woman caught in a dangerous cycle of addiction and illness who overcame her demons in an utterly triumphant way.”