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Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Librettist: Francesco Maria Piave
Levine; Grist, Grillo, Pavarotti, Wixell, MacurdyMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 55 min.
Verdi’s tragic tale of misplaced love is splendidly enacted by this magnificent cast. Luciano Pavarotti is the elegant, licentious Duke of Mantua who successfully woos the innocent Gilda (Reri Grist) while he’s disguised as a poor student. When he ruins her, her father, Rigoletto (Ingvar Wixell) decides to get revenge—and ends up losing the only th...
Panni; Anderson, Svendén, Pavarotti, Nucci, FurlanettoMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 58 min.
Superstar Luciano Pavarotti left his indelible mark on some of the greatest roles in the tenor repertoire—including Verdi’s Duke of Mantua, one of opera’s ultimate bad boys. In this performance, Pavarotti’s trademark honeyed tone and suave phrasing are paired with the innocence of June Anderson’s Gilda (in the soprano’s Met debut season and role). ...
Composer: George Frideric Handel
Librettist: Nicola Haym
Summers; Fleming, Blythe, Scholl, van Rensburg, RelyeaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 49 min.
The fourth Handel opera to enter the Met repertoire, Rodelinda stars Renée Fleming in the title role of the Queen of Lombardy and grieving widow of King Bertarido (countertenor Andreas Scholl), who furiously rejects marriage to Grimoaldo (tenor Kobie van Rensburg), the usurper of her late husband’s throne. Plot complications come thick and fast, am...
Composer: George Frideric Handel
Librettist: Nicola Francesco Haym
Bicket; Fleming, Blythe, Daniels, van Rensburg, RelyeaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 53 min.
Handel’s opera had never been done at the Met until this all-star cast thrilled audiences. Renée Fleming gives one of her most moving performances as the virtuous Queen Rodelinda, grieving for her husband Bertarido (David Daniels), and scornful of the man who has stolen his kingdom, Grimoaldo (Kobie van Rensburg). But if Rodelinda does not marry th...
Composer: Charles Gounod
Librettist: Jules Barbier and Michel Carré
Lewis; Blegen, Corelli, Carlson, GillMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 34 min.
No one ever doubted the handsome, charismatic Italian tenor Franco Corelli was the personification of the romantic hero. So what better role for him than Roméo, the impetuous youth who defies his family, and his city, to follow where his heart leads? Corelli’s ardor knows no bounds in his quest for Juliette (the sparkling Judith Blegen). This perfo...
Cooper; Sayão, Björling, Brownlee, MosconaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 6 min.
From their first meeting until their tragic deaths, Jussi Björling and Bidú Sayão are a Romeo and Juliet you won’t be able to forget. Their achingly beautiful voices convey all the passion and impetuousness of Shakespeare’s poignant teenage lovers. But at the same time Björling and Sayao sing with an elegance and charm so necessary for French opera...
Molinari-Pradelli; Freni, Gedda, Reardon, MacurdyMetropolitan Opera Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 37 min.
No Roméo could possibly resist Mirella Freni’s enchanting combination of appealing innocence and impulsiveness as Juliette. Her warm lyric voice glided over Juliette’s phrases with a naturalness that brought the character to stunning life. Nicolai Gedda’s Roméo was sensitive, ardent, and as stylish as they come. Together Freni and Gedda showed a ne...
Composer: Giacomo Puccini
Librettist: Giuseppe Adami
Marin; Opolais, Christy, Filianoti, Brenciu, CroftMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 47 min.
Soprano Kristine Opolais made a celebrated Met debut in Puccini’s bittersweet story of love and loss. She sings Magda, a young woman who leaves behind her luxurious existence as the mistress of the rich Rambaldo (Dwayne Croft) to follow her heart and live with Ruggero (Giuseppe Filianoti)—but their happiness is short-lived. Anna Christy is Magda’s ...
Composer: Richard Strauss
Librettist: Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Kempe; Della Casa, Güden, Stevens, Herbert, EdelmannMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 58 min.
Risë Stevens stars in the title role of the impetuous young Octavian in Strauss’s elegant comedy. The great Lisa Della Casa is the Marschallin, Octavian’s wiser, older lover, and Hilde Güden sings Sophie, the girl he falls in love with. Otto Edelmann delivers a hilarious portrayal as the boorish Baron Ochs, Sophie’s would-be fiancé. Rudolf Kempe le...
Schippers; Schwarzkopf, Raskin, Della Casa, Dönch, EdelmannMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 56 min.
Richard Strauss and Hugo von Hofmannsthal’s sublime comedy set in a fairy-tale 18th-century Vienna is ideally served by an extraordinary cast: The elegant Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, heard here in her Met debut run, embodied the character of the Marschallin like no other singer. Lisa Della Casa (herself a celebrated Marschallin) is Octavian, her youthfu...
Levine; Te Kanawa, Blegen, Troyanos, Hammond-Stroud, HauglandMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 10 min.
Kiri Te Kanawa is sensational as the Marschallin, one of the most beloved characters in all of opera. When her young aristocratic lover Octavian (the magnificent Tatiana Troyanos) delivers the ceremonial silver rose to Sophie (Judith Blegen), the fiancée of their country cousin, Baron Ochs (Aage Haugland), the two young people fall instantly in lov...
Böhm; Rysanek, Grist, Ludwig, Knoll, BerryMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 2 min.
Strauss’s poignant fairy tale of 18th-century Vienna is brilliantly realized by a glittering cast under the musical direction of the great Karl Böhm, a friend and protégé of the composer. Vienna’s own Leonie Rysanek is the beautiful and wise Marschallin, the woman who knows her affair with the impetuous Octavian (a superb Christa Ludwig) will not l...
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