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Composer: Benjamin Britten
Librettist: Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears, after Shakespeare
Atherton; McNair, Gustafson, Bunnell, Kowalski, Streit, Gilfry, RoseMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 30 min.
Shakespeare’s enchanting tale is set to some of Benjamin Britten’s most atmospheric music, with a libretto taken entirely from the text of the play. Countertenor Jochen Kowalski is Oberon, King of the Fairies, and Sylvia McNair sings his queen, Tytania. The ensemble cast also includes Nick Stahl as Puck, Nancy Gustafson as Helena, Jane Bunnell as H...
Composer: Ambroise Thomas
Librettist: Jules Barbier and Michel Carré,
Pelletier; Stevens, Benzell, Melton, Pinza,Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 18 min.
In this performance, the sensational Risë Stevens sings one of her signature roles, the shy but loving Mignon. It's a true operatic rarity, not heard at the Met since Stevens last did it in 1949, and it overflows with astonishing musical variety. The opera has at least two roles dear to the hearts of great singing actors: Mignon, and old Lothario, ...
Composer: Arnold Schoenberg
Librettist: Arnold Schoenberg
Levine; Langridge, TomlinsonMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 40 min.
From \"James Levine: Celebrating 40 Years at the Met\" CD box set. \r\rSchoenberg’s only full-length opera, based on the Biblical story of the exodus, was left incomplete at the time of his death. It is stunningly brought to life here in its Met premiere run, conducted by James Levine, who brings out all of the score’s emotional intensity. John Tom...
Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Librettist: Temistocle Solera, based on the play Nabuchodonosor by Auguste Anicet-Bourgeois and Francis Cornu
Schippers; MacNeil, Rysanek, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 51 min.
This is the opera that made Verdi famous overnight, performed here with the all-star cast that introduced the work to the Met shortly before this broadcast. Thomas Schippers' superb conducting galvanized the Met orchestra and chorus, to say nothing of the magnificent soloists, headed by Cornell MacNeil as the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, who los...
Composer: Vincenzo Bellini
Librettist: Felice Romani
Masini; Caballé, Verrett, Alexander, MichalskiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Montserrat Caballé takes on the title heroine of Bellini’s bel canto drama, delivering an extraordinary performance in one of the most demanding roles in the soprano repertoire. A Druid priestess who has broken her vows for the sake of love, Norma finds herself in a love triangle with her confidante Adalgisa (a dramatically stirring Shirley Verrett...
Maag; Verrett, Cossutta, Obraztsova, PlishkaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 34 min.
Norma (Shirley Verrett) is the high priestess of the Druids and daughter of their leader Oroveso (Paul Plishka). But she is also in love with Pollione (Carlo Cossuta), proconsul of their Roman oppressors, and secretly has had two children with him. Matters get even more complicated when another priestess, Adalgisa (Elena Obraztsova), innocently con...
Cillario; Caballé, Cossotto, Cossutta, TozziMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 22 min.
Montserrat Caballé is one of the few sopranos who have triumphed at the Met in the Herculean role of Norma. She was acclaimed for the astonishing beauty of her voice, her unbelievable breath control, and the ability to spin out shimmering soft tones that sent the audience into a frenzy. When she brought those formidable gifts to Bellini’s magical s...
Bonynge; Sutherland, Horne, Bergonzi, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 28 min.
Norma may be the most challenging soprano role in all of Italian opera. Only the very greatest have the technical mastery and vocal acumen to convey all the facets of this virtuosic part. With this legendary cast, everything comes together in this bel canto masterpiece. Joan Sutherland’s ravishingly beautiful voice can do anything Bellini’s spectac...
Composer: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Librettist: Lorenzo da Ponte
Wigglesworth; Isokoski, Rost, Coote, Mattei, RelyeaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 47 min.
Peter Mattei is an elegant Count Almaviva in this lively performance of one of opera’s most celebrated human comedies. He leads a great cast that also includes Soile Isokoski as his long-suffering wife, the Countess, as well as Andrea Rost and John Relyea as the servant couple Susanna and Figaro, whose wedding day in interrupted by countless compli...
Rudolf; de los Angeles, Conner, Miller, Guarrera, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 37 min.
The legendary Cesare Siepi sings one of his most popular roles in this historic broadcast—the effervescent servant Figaro. Together with his bride, Susanna (Nadine Conner), Figaro plots to outwit their imperious master, Count Almaviva (Frank Guarrera), who has been making advances towards Susanna. Fortunately the two have help from Almaviva’s disen...
Rosenstock; Della Casa, Freni, Stratas, Krause, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 40 min.
Lisa Della Casa may have been Mozart’s ideal Countess. Her aristocratic presence and silvery voice lit up the stage wherever she performed. This broadcast mark’s Della Casa’s final appearance at the Met, and she’s surrounded by an incomparable cast that makes this rich comedy sparkle. Tom Krause is her philandering husband; Cesare Siepi and Mirella...
Rudel; Fleming, McLaughlin, Bunnell, Croft, MorrisMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 54 min.
Mozart’s divine comedy is performed often but rarely with a cast like this. With the great singing actor James Morris (Figaro) and the delectable Marie McLaughlin (Susanna) as the servant couple and aristocratic Dwayne Croft (the Count) and ravishing Renée Fleming (the Countess) as their employers, the battleground is evenly drawn. It finally ends ...
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