Mezzo soprano not guilty of assault over frozen tofu dinner
Soprano Marcella Caprario and Dr. Catherine London
It’s not always peace and love when vegan shoppers meet on New York City’s toney Upper West Side. Last January, a doctor and an opera singer got into an “exchange” over a package of frozen pad Thai with tofu in a Trader Joe’s store that ended with the mezzo soprano smacking the doctor across the face. The doctor promptly had her arrested.
It all began when Dr. Catherine London, daughter of famous AIG insurance mogul Hank Greenberg, and opera diva Marcella Caprario were at the frozen dinner counter at a Trader Joe’s store.
The doctor’s 13-year-old son got in the way of the diva’s husband, who was reaching for a package of frozen vegan pad Thai, and a passionate duet ensued between the two ladies – worthy of two warring Valkyries, but not as musical, and with a libretto full of expletives that would make any composer blush – culminating in the soprano abandoning the vocal line and reassigning herself to the percussion when she smacked the doctor across the face.
Act Two of this plant-based operatic rewrite took place in Manhattan Criminal Court last week, when the doctor testified that the soprano had “hit me so hard my ears were ringing. I couldn’t even see for a moment. I was absolutely stunned.”
But it turned out, in cross-examination, that some of the doctor’s patients had apparently been singing their own colorful songs online about the doctor’s behavior in her own office. Under questioning by Ms. Caprario’s defense lawyer, Mark Bederow, Dr. London had to respond to accusations of “some pretty angry interaction with your patients.”
Judge ShawnDya Simpson brought the drama to its denouement, finding the soprano not guilty of all charges.
Happily, as the American Humane Association might add, no animals were harmed in the making of this vegan drama.
And here’s a video of Ms. Caprario in her normal, non-percussion mode:
What do you say? Would you have dismissed the case, as the judge did? And have you ever witnessed (or, umm, participated in) an altercation in a high-end food market? Let us know in a comment or on Facebook.