"It is the Queen of Sheba! The Empress of China and Czarina of Russia! It is the Queen of Spain! It is Cleopatra! Double the trumpets! Quadruple the fanfare! It is all the queens and  empresses at once!
Maria Callas - Opera begins long before the curtain goes up and ends long after it has come down. It starts in my imagination, it becomes my life, and it stays part of my life long after I've left the opera house.