20th May 2011 - 14:31 | London UK, wild west end |
There is a tale that the real life story that inspired Georges Bizet's famous opera was based on a lass who many thought was not Spanish but actually Egyptian. Bizet's opera omitted some facts about her in order to retain the Spanish angle
As many know, the story of Carmen concerns a fiery lass with an eye for a toreador. The real life story though (and the bit that Bizet's opera omits) notes that she also enjoyed sunbathing, something that was not common at the time. Being a modest girl, her initial forays into this meant that she kept a reasonable amount of her body still covered. However, when looking at the results in the mirror, she was dismayed by the stark contrast between the beautifully bronzed parts and the pasty coloured flesh that had been kept covered. She resolved to go for the all-over tan and thereafter would strip off naked and lie out in the sun. But no matter how hard she tried, she could not achieve that consistent all over colour. The already bronzed parts got darker and the pasty coloured bits turned a lighter shade of gold. Many folk thought that she was Egyptian as locals referred to her as 'two tan Carmen'.
You may now groan....
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