Monday, September 21, 2020

Sapphic European Opera Soprano Gets Lobotomy In "Ratched"

Harriet Sansom Harris plays the chain-smoking diva.

Ryan Murphy's latest exploration for Netflix is Ratched. Described as "an American psychological thriller drama web television series about the character of the same name from Ken Kesey's 1962 novel One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. Created by Evan Romansky and developed by Ryan Murphy, the series stars Sarah Paulson in the title role and serves as a prequel to the novel. It premiered on Netflix on September 18, 2020." Netflix adds: "Ratched is a suspenseful drama series that tells the origin story of asylum nurse Mildred Ratched. In 1947, Mildred arrives in Northern California to seek employment at a leading psychiatric hospital where new and unsettling experiments have begun on the human mind. On a clandestine mission, Mildred presents herself as the perfect image of what a dedicated nurse should be, but the wheels are always turning and as she begins
Barbaric Practice: If opera didn't do Ingrid in, this surgery might!
to infiltrate the mental health care system and those within it, Mildred's stylish exterior belies a growing darkness that has long been smoldering within, revealing that true monsters are made, not born." One character, a faded opera singer named Ingrid, appears in two episodes. She is equal parts Zinka Milanov and Eva Marton. When describing her repertoire, she says "I sang all the major dramatic roles from Brünnhilde to Turandot." Finding herself lost now that her career is over, she has arrived at the asylum for  new revolutionary procedure, which turns out to be a lobotomy. Things get a bit more complicated when it's revealed she is also a lesbian, something the hospital is trying to "cure" as well. In the second appearance of Ingrid, the scene opens with Puccini's aria "Tu che di gel sei cinta" from Turandot. Although Ingrid herself would have sung the title role of the opera, this from the character of Liù resonates with several themes within the show. 
The rest of the Ratched cast includes Sharon Stone, Sarah Paulsen, Judy Davis, Cynthia Nixon, Finn Wittrock, Jon Jon Briones, and Charlie Carver. See more stills of Ingrid from Ratched, and see videos of the above aria as well as others that Ingrid would have performed, after the jump. [Source, Source]
Naughty Nurse: Sarah Paulsen plays Mildred Ratched.

"Tu che di gel sei cinta" performed by Leona Mitchell. The aria is featured in the Neflix show Ratched.

"In questa reggia" from Puccini's Turandot performed by Eva Marton. This is repertoire the character of Ingrid would have performed in her career.

"Immolation Scene" from Wagner's Götterdämmerung performed by Hildegard Behrens. This is another role that Ingrid claims to have sung at leading opera houses.