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Composer: Richard Strauss
Librettist: Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Busch; Jessner, Steber, Stevens, Lechner, ListMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 51 min.
The sensational Risë Stevens leads the cast in this spectacular performance of Strauss’s masterwork in one of her most memorable roles, the young Count Octavian. The passionate aristocrat finds himself caught between two women—the gracious, worldly-wise Marschallin, sung by Irene Jessner, and the beautiful young Sophie, played by Eleanor Steber, at...
Composer: Igor Stravinsky
Levine; Lewis, Quivar, Mazura, Rolandi, CreechMetropolitan Opera Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 12 min.
This triple bill of works by one of the greatest composers of the 20th century, directed by John Dexter and designed by David Hockney, offered Met audiences a rich theatrical experience—beginning with the dramatically gripping ballet Le Sacre du Printemps, choreographed by Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux, with Music Director James Levine and the Met Orchestr...
Composer: Richard Strauss
Librettist: Hedwig Lachmann's translation of Oscar Wilde's drama, adapted by the composer
Gergiev; Mattila, Diadkova, Jerusalem, Polenzani, DohmenMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 34 min.
Karita Mattila gives a tour-de-force performance in the title role of Strauss’s groundbreaking opera, opposite Alfred Dohmen as Jochanaan (John the Baptist), the object of her deadly passion. Larissa Diadkova is Herodias, Salome’s mother, and Siegfried Jerusalem sings her husband, King Herod, whose desire for his stepdaughter sets the tragedy in mo...
Composer: Richard Strauss
Librettist: Hedwig Lachmann after Oscar Wilde
Leinsdorf; Rysanek, Varnay, Ulfung, Riegel, BaileyMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 36 min.
This performance presents the great Leonie Rysanek in one of her most memorable roles—the teenage Judean princess Salome. Obsessed with the prophet Jochanaan, the Biblical John the Baptist (Norman Bailey), she skillfully manipulates her lecherous stepfather Herod (Ragnar Ulfung) until he has no choice but to have the holy man killed for spurning th...
Levine; Bumbry, Resnik, Ulfung, Lewis, ShadurMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 33 min.
Richard Strauss’s dramatic and colorful score, based on Wilde’s scandalous play, is brought to life masterfully by James Levine and the Met Orchestra. The magnetic Grace Bumbry captures every neurotic nuance of the title character, the teenage princess who becomes obsessed with the imprisoned prophet Jochanaan. When he rejects her advances, tragedy...
Böhm; Nilsson, Dalis, Liebl, Shirley, CasselMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 30 min.
The great Birgit Nilsson gives a spectacular performance as Strauss’s biblical princess. Walter Cassel is the imprisoned prophet Jochanaan, the object of Salome’s desire. When he rejects her advances, Salome has no hesitation in exacting her murderous revenge. The infamous final scene, in which she kisses Jochanaan’s severed head, is one of the mos...
Composer: Camille Saint-Saëns
Librettist: Ferdinand Lemaire
Slatkin; Graves, Domingo, LeiferkusMetropolitan Opera Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 4 min.
Plácido Domingo (Samson) and Denyce Graves (Dalila) give a searing demonstration of “onstage chemistry.” Certainly no one could possibly doubt that this Samson and Dalila were fated to be together, regardless of all the obstacles put in their way. Graves’s sultry, come-hither voice perfectly complements Domingo’s honeyed tenor. With Sergei Leiferku...
Cleva; Stevens, Del Monaco, SingherMetropolitan Opera Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 56 min.
This Biblical tale of the overwhelming love between a Jewish leader (Samson) and a Philistine beauty (Dalila) that turns sour and destroys them both has inspired numerous composers. But it’s easy to see why Saint-Saëns’s opera has remained a favorite—not only with audiences but also with great singing actors. Seldom has Dalila been so sultry and se...
Abravanel; Wettergren, Maison, PinzaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 2 min.
Mezzo-soprano Gertrud Wettergren is the legendary biblical temptress whose ensnares the strongest man in the world, Samson, only to leave him a helpless prisoner of his enemies. Belgian tenor René Maison blends superb French style with virile intensity to make this hero a truly tragic figure. The great singing actor Ezio Pinza brings dramatic depth...
Composer: Richard Wagner
Librettist: Richard Wagner
Bodanzky; Melchior, Flagstad, Schorr, Laufkötter, HabichMetropolitan Opera Orchestra
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 23 min.
This is one of the legendary performances from the Met’s vast archive of historic broadcasts. The incomparable Lauritz Melchior stars in the title role of the young hero who sets out to explore the world—killing the fierce dragon Fafner (Eduard Habich) and the evil dwarf Mime (Karl Laufkötter) along the way. When Wotan (the great Friedrich Schorr) ...
Levine; Eaglen, Andersen, MorrisMetropolitan Opera Orchestra
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 57 min.
In the third of the four Ring operas, we meet the hero Siegfried (Stig Andersen in his Met debut). Taking possession of the magic ring and the powerful Tarnhelm, he sets in motion the final events of Wagner’s epic story that eventually lead to the end of the gods’ rule. Jane Eaglen sings Brünnhilde, James Morris is the Wanderer and Graham Clark giv...
Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Librettist: Francesco Maria Piave and Arrigo Boito
Stiedry; Varnay, Tucker, Warren, SzékelyMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 11 min.
A sensational cast brings Verdi’s dark drama—a rarity in 1950—to stirring life. The great baritone Leonard Warren takes on the title role, opposite Astrid Varnay as his long-lost daughter Amelia, one of the legendary Wagnerian soprano’s few Italian roles. Met audience favorite Richard Tucker is Gabriele Adorno, Amelia’s lover and Boccanegra’s polit...
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