The Flagstad Manuscript

The Flagstad Manuscript

The Flagstad Manuscript

The Flagstad Manuscript

Excerpt

From what I have to say, I hope it will be clear why I decided to call this book The Flagstad Manuscript, rather than The Flagstad Story or some such title. It is a story that goes back twelve years, to a spring day when material was first gathered for a book projected by the late Pitts Sanborn, with my collaboration.

Now the original plan had been to do a biography. For inclusion in this volume, there was assembled a substantial cross section of the New York reviews of each of Mme. Flagstad's roles as she performed them for the first time at the Metropolitan. This material, to be used as an appendix, was to constitute an important part of the book as a critical survey.

An appendix of this sort would have been out of the question in a book bearing an autobiographical title such as The Story of My Life. Much of this supplementary matter consists of praise of the highest order from the critics. It could scarcely have been reprinted by Mme. Flagstad as titular author of the book. There is no false modesty about Kirsten Flagstad--but neither is she an exhibitionist. Pride rather than conceit is her quality. I should add that the decision to do the book this way was mine alone. Mme. Flagstad left it to my discretion, as she did so many other matters, and I persuaded the publishers that under the circumstances this was the only solution.

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