Experience New York’s legendary Met Opera from the comfort of our very own Great Hall. Celebrating its fiftieth anniversary at the Lincoln Centre in New York, this season includes an iconic piece from Wagner, a tale of a charismatic seducer by Mozart and a stunning debut opera by a Finnish composer. Watch the trailer below and continue reading to find out more about the magnificent upcoming programme by the world-renowned opera house.
Schedule at a glance
Mon 17 October: Tristan und Isolde. Composed by Richard Wagner. 1.55pm. Recorded.
Mon 07 November: Don Giovanni. Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. 6.55pm. Recorded.
Mon 19 December: L’Amour de Loin. Composed by Kaija Saariaho. 6.55pm. Recorded.
Tue 17 January: Nabucco. Composed by Guiseppe Verdi. 6.55pm. Recorded.
Tue 31 January: Roméo et Juliette. Composed by Charles Gounod. 1.55pm. Recorded.
Sat 25 February: Rusalka. Composed by Antonín Dvořák. 5.55pm.
Tue 21 March: La Traviata. Composed by Guiseppe Verdi. 6.55pm. Recorded.
Tue 04 April: Idomeneo. Composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. 1.55pm. Recorded.
Tue 02 May: Eugene Onegin. Composed by Pyotr Tchaikovsky. 1.55pm. Recorded.
Sat 13 May: Der Rosenkavalier. Composed by Richard Strauss. 5.30pm.
Opening the new season is Wagner’s breathtaking meditation on love and death, Tristan und Isolde. Opening first in Munich in 1865, the astounding musical score has stunned audiences from across the globe by acknowledging the title roles as the most vocally demanding in opera. Combining a sumptuous symphonic scale with a mystical, Celtic tale, this new production by Marius Treliński promises to start the new season with an emotional bang. Listen to Marius talk more about the production in the video below.
Aided by his ingenious librettist, Lorenzo Da Ponte, Mozart approached his operatic retelling of the Don Juan myth from a point of view that is neither tragic nor entirely comic, but rather lighthearted, urbane, and ironic. We follow the legendary womaniser, Don Giovanni, and his sidekick Leporello, as his past antics begin to catch up with him when he kills the Commendatore. Encompassing heady themes of seduction, indulgence and inevitable fate, the Met’s new production places the tale in an unnamed Spanish city in the mid-18th century. Have a watch of the highlights from the 2011 production.
Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho’s breakthrough opera was described by the New York Times as “transfixing…a lushly beautiful score.” It will now finally have its Metropolitan Opera premiere in a dazzling new production by Robert Lepage, visualising the tale of love-struck poet Jaufré (Eric Owens) and his desire to reach his ‘love from afar’ (Susanna Phillips) who can hear him through music across the other side of the ocean. To learn more about the new production, watch a preview below.
The success of Verdi’s third opera, a stirring drama about the fall of ancient Jerusalem at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar (Nabucco), catapulted the 28-year-old composer to international fame. The legendary Plácido Domingo brings another new baritone role to the Met under the baton of his longtime collaborator James Levine. Liudmyla Monastyrska is Abigaille, the warrior woman determined to rule empires, and Jamie Barton is the heroic Fenena. Dmitri Belosselskiy is the stentorian voice of the oppressed Hebrew people.
Perhaps the most enduringly successful of the many operatic settings of the world’s consummate love story, Roméo et Juliette is an excellent example of French Romanticism, a tradition that values subtlety, sensuality, and graceful vocal delivery over showy effects. In Gounod’s lush Shakespeare adaptation the production, by director Bartlett Sher, has already won acclaim for its vivid 18th-century milieu and stunning costumes. The Met’s new production moves the action to the 18th century.
The only one of Dvořák’s operas to gain an international following (so far), Rusalka is in many ways a definitive example of late Romanticism—containing folklore, evocations of the natural and the supernatural worlds, and even a poignant interpretation of the idea of a love-death. Mary Zimmerman brings her wondrous theatrical imagination to Dvořák’s fairytale of love and longing, rejection and redemption. Watch her delve into the inspiration behind her production below.
Verdi’s La Traviata survived a notoriously unsuccessful opening night to become one of the best-loved operas in the repertoire. Its intimate scope and subject matter inspired the composer to create some of his most profound and heartfelt music. The title role of the “fallen woman” has captured the imaginations of audiences and performers alike with its inexhaustible vocal and dramatic possibilities—and challenges. The play is still staged today in its original form. Take a look at the infamous Drinking Song from Act I of the 2014-15 production below.
Mozart’s first operatic masterpiece returns to the Met in the classic Jean-Pierre Ponnelle production. Like many stories from Greek myth, Idomeneo explores the motivations and emotions of humans whose fates seem beyond their own control. The opera casts these issues within the framework of the opera seria genre, a stylized format popular in the 18th century. The opera is set on the island of Crete in the aftermath of the Trojan War. The era is evocative, reflecting the confusion of a post-traumatic historical moment.
Tchaikovsky’s setting of Pushkin’s timeless verse novel is presented on the Met stage in Deborah Warner’s moving production. The opera re-imagines the Byronic romantic anti-hero as the definitive bored Russian aristocrat caught between convention and tedium. At the core of the opera is the young girl Tatiana, who grows from a sentimental adolescent into a complete woman in one of the operatic stage’s most convincing character developments. The Met’s production places the action in the later 19th century instead of the conceptual 1820, around the time of the opera’s premiere. Re-live the emotional letter scene in a excerpt from the 2013 production.
Set in an idealized Vienna of the past, Strauss’s most popular opera concerns a wise woman of the world who is involved with a much younger lover but ultimately forced to accept the laws of time, giving him up to a pretty young heiress. In his new production, Robert Carsen, the director behind the Met’s recent Falstaff, places the action at the end of the Habsburg Empire, underscoring the opera’s subtext of class and conflict against a rich backdrop of gilt and red damask. Watch a preview of Robert’s new production below.
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