In 2007, Patricia Racette gave one of the most shattering performances I have ever witnessed, as Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. I did not cry during the second act: I sobbed. Though she is no wee thing, Racette made me believe, unquestioning, in Cio-Cio San’s plight. Even now, years later, I remain in awe of the sheer generosity of her performance, how unsparingly she gave of her heart and soul.I reviewed her performance in this season’s Metropolitan Opera revival of Tosca for The Classical Review. (She reprises her Cio-Cio-San at the Met for five performances starting 17 February.)
I had the pleasure of interviewing Racette and her spouse Beth Clayton for the Gay & Lesbian section of Time Out New York. (I myself am an incorrigible but, I hope, righteous heterosexual. Kindly take note, Mr. Brown Eyes.) Both women are smart, down to earth, and charming. My friend and colleague Stephanie Schroeder also interviewed them for Curve (PDF download).
And did you know that Racette and Clayton made an “It Gets Better” video? That, too, got me blubbering.
These ladies are real menschen.