Music: Dali v. Scarlatti

Conductor Antal Dorati faced 17 musicians wearing 18th century breeches, periwigs and white silk hose. On a balcony overhead. Surrealist Artist Salvador Dali abruptly appeared in a Venetian gondolier's outfit and a red Catalan cap, began splashing brown and gold paint on a canvas with such vehemence that he spattered the astonished audience below. With a flourish, he ripped the canvas open—and out flew a dozen frightened homing pigeons, to flap about looking wildly for their cote.

With this upsetting overture, the curtain in Venice's handsome La Fenice theater rose one night last week...

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