In 2004 Deborah Voigt, one of the world's most gifted sopranos, was dismissed from a London production of Ariadne auf Naxos for being too fat to fit in the little black dress that the director insisted was integral to the production. On Monday Voigt, who has gone from a size 30 to a 14 after weight-reduction surgery, has what the New York Times is calling a "second date" with that black dress: starring in the same production of Ariadne.
Last week Voight produced a video spoof about the dress—which has become a symbol of questionable priorities in opera—and posted it on YouTube, with approval of the Royal Opera House. In the skit, a floating black dress comes to Voigt's apartment to ask for forgiveness. "I was sort of surprised that Covent Garden gave me the go-ahead," said the soprano, "but they loved it."