Which is more surprising: that Woody Allen will be working in Los Angeles, or that he’ll be directing an opera? Allen said today: “I have no idea what I am doing. But incompetence has never prevented me from plunging in with enthusiasm.” It will happen in September 2008, according to Placido Domingo, the Los Angeles Opera general director who spent four years pursuing Woody to do it. Allen is scheduled to helm the medieval Gianni Schicchi, Puccini’s only comedy and part of the Il Trittico trio of one-act operas. Allen is following in the footsteps of The Exorcist and The French Connection director Billy Friedkin who has been directing operas for some time now with great success and will helm the two other operas in the trio. Woody, of course, has amply demonstrated a love of music. He plays the clarinet many Monday nights at a nightclub in Manhattan. For years he has worked with musical director Dick Hyman to adapt classic American songs and jazz for his films. And after completing his first musical, Everyone Says I Love You (1996), Woody said he’d like to do another.
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