In January next year, Deborah Voigt's “strikingly honest memoir” will be published by HarperCollins entitled Call Me Debbie: True Confessions of a Down-to-Earth Diva.
The press release announces that she recounts “with characteristic candor, charisma, and wit – her harrowing and ultimately successful private battles to overcome the addictions and self-destructive tendencies that nearly cut short her life”. In the book she describes the events that led to her dangerous gastric bypass surgery in 2004 and its shocking aftermath: her substantial weight loss coupled with the “cross addiction” that led to alcoholism and severe depression before she emerged to achieve complete sobriety.
Voigt also gives insight into the roles she's played, especially the characters she loves: Strauss's Ariadne and Salome, Puccini's Minnie, and Wagner's Sieglinde, Isolde, and Brünnhilde among them. There are also anecdotes and even some juicy backstage gossip is promised!
I never imagined myself becoming a world-famous dramatic soprano who'd share the stages of the biggest opera houses in the world with the most celebrated vocalists of our time. I didn't yearn to meet presidents, princes, Pavarottis, and Plácidos. As a child, I only knew I loved to sing – I was singing before I was talking.
When the deal with HarperCollins was announced the New York Times' ArtsBeat quoted Voigt as saying,
It's time for me to step up and share my story because I know there are lots of other people, especially women, who are out there suffering in silence.
Jonathan Burnham, the publisher of HarperCollins, said that the book was,
An unbelievably honest narrative of a woman caught in a dangerous cycle of addiction and illness who overcame her demons in an utterly triumphant way.
On Twitter @debvoigt has been known for four years as a “Dramatic soprano & down to earth diva” and was named as one of the top 25 cultural tweeters to follow by the Los Angeles Times.
Call Me Debbie: True Confessions of a Down-to-Earth Diva is published on 27 January 2015 by HarperCollins.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.