PartyLines- photographs by Patrick McMullan

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Opening Night of ‘Tosca’ and the Metropolitan Opera’s 2009-10 Season

Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center. September 22, 2009. By Jada Yuan

Can you sing? “I can carry a tune, but not at the Met.” —Edward Norton

Billy Joel

What life lessons did you learn from this opera? “Don’t listen to the fat guy if he says the firing squad’s gonna be fake. And he’s hit on you majorly, and he’s a big, fat sleazy guy. Don’t believe him.” —Christine Baranski

Mischa Barton

The audience booed the performance tonight. Is that reaction normal? “It’s a European opera tradition that people boo. I’ve been the subject of booing myself. Booing is a very strong statement to make, and I think very few performances deserve it.” —Renée Fleming

Martha Stewart

Do you sing? “I really wanted to be in musical theater, so, yeah! I sing Noel Coward, Gershwin, everything. Opera ended because I became a bari-tenor. And to be a baritone, you know, it’s decent for musical theater, but for opera it’s like the end. ” —Zac Posen

Diane Von Furstenberg

Oscar de la Renta

Do you like Tosca? “I actually wrote my own version of Tosca as a kid. It was called Flatbush Tosca. E avanti a lui tremava tutta Flatbush! Tosca was a drag queen, Cavaradossi was a drug dealer, and Scarpia was a crooked policeman. Of course, everyone dies. That’s why you do Tosca.” —Harvey Fierstein

Patricia Clarkson

Do your plays at the Public Theater ever get booed? “Never! Which I actually regret, because there’s something vivifying about having the audience respond.” —Oskar Eustis

Rachel Feinstein

Sam Waterston (Getty Images)

Dr. Kissinger, do you sing? “Not for New York Magazine.” —Henry Kissinger

John Currin

As a pregnant woman, was it hard to sit still for four hours watching opera? “No, it was great. The baby kicked at all the dramatic parts. I’m trying to create a patron of the arts.” —Leelee Sobieski

Jason Wu

Morgan Spurlock

What did you think of the booing? “This was my first opera ever, so at first I thought that’s just what you did. Then when people explained to me why they were booing, it was very Amateur Night at the Apollo.” —Joy Bryant

Julie Taymor

Can you sing? “If I could sing, do you think I’d be a schools chancellor?” —Joel Klein (Getty Images)

Austin Scarlett

What did you think of the booing? “This was my first time at the opera, so I didn’t know why. I had to ask everyone what was going on. I was like, ‘What? I thought it was great! What’s happening?’” —Karolina Kurkova

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