The double bill of Iolanta / Bluebeard’s Castle returns to the Met repertory on January 24 in Mariusz Treliński’s haunting production

The double bill of Iolanta / Bluebeard’s Castle returns to the Met repertory on January 24 in Mariusz Treliński’s haunting production


  • Henrik Nánási makes his anticipated Met debut conducting the two masterworks by Tchaikovsky and Bartók


  • Iolanta, in only its second presentation in Met history, stars Sonya Yoncheva in the title role and Matthew Polenzani in his role debut as Vaudémont


  • Angela Denoke returns to the Met for the first time in 13 years to sing Judith in Bluebeard’s Castle, while Gerald Finley adds Bluebeard to his Met repertory



            New York, NY (December 17, 2018)—The Metropolitan Opera presents a double bill of two rarely performed one-act operas, Tchaikovsky’s romantic fairy tale Iolanta and Bartók’s harrowing Bluebeard’s Castle, with six performances January 24 to February 14, 2019. Iolanta stars Sonya Yoncheva in the title role of a blind princess and Matthew Polenzani as Vaudémont, the knight who loves her. Bluebeard’s Castle stars Angela Denoke as Judith, an innocent young bride who discovers the terrifying truth about her new husband, the menacing Bluebeard, sung by Gerald Finley. Henrik Nánási makes his Met debut conducting both operas, which are presented in a production by acclaimed director Mariusz Treliński.

            The cast of Iolanta also includes Alexey Markov as Robert, a duke who has been promised Iolanta’s hand in marriage; Vitalij Kowaljow as the king René, Iolanta’s father; and Elchin Azizov as the physician Ibn-Hakia. At the performance on February 14, the role of Robert will be sung by Lucas Meachem and the role of René will be sung by Alexander Roslavets in his Met debut.


Iolanta/Bluebeard’s Castle Radio and Online Broadcasts

The January 24 and February 9 performances of Iolanta/Bluebeard’s Castle will be broadcast live on Metropolitan Opera Radio on SiriusXM Channel 75. The February 9 performance will be broadcast over the Toll Brothers–Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network, and the January 24 performance will also be streamed live on the Met’s web site,


Iolanta/Bluebeard’s Castle Artist Biographies

Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva adds a new role to her Met repertory as Iolanta. She made her Met debut in 2013 as Gilda in Verdi’s Rigoletto, followed by widely acclaimed company role debuts as Mimì in Puccini’s La Bohème, Desdemona in the Met’s 2015–16 season premiere of Verdi’s Otello,and Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata. Last season, she sang the title role of Puccini’s Tosca, reprised Mimì in La Bohème, and sang the title role in Verdi’s Luisa Miller; all three productions were transmitted as part of The Met: Live in HD series, making Yoncheva the first artist to have three principal roles in the same HD season. Other performances this season include Violetta at La Scala and Tosca at Paris Opera. Also this season at the Met, she reprises Desdemona in Otello.

American tenor Matthew Polenzani makes his role debut as Vaudémont. He has sung more than 360 performances with the company since his debut in 1997 as Boyar in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov. Other Met credits include the title role of Mozart’s Idomeneo,Nemorino in Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore, Ferrando in Mozart’s Così fan tutte, the title character in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’ Hoffmann, the Duke in Verdi’s Rigoletto, and role debuts in the Met new production premieres of Bizet’s Les Pêcheurs de Perles as Nadir and in the title role of Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux.Other performances this season include Idomeneo at Lyric Opera of Chicago and Don José in Bizet’s Carmen at San Francisco Opera. Later this season at the Met, he will sing the title role in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito.

Russian baritone Alexey Markov reprises the role of Robert, which he sang in this production’s premiere at the Met during the 2014–15 season. He made his Met debut as Prince Andrei Bolkonsky in Prokofiev’s War and Peace in 2007 and has since returned to the house as Marcello in Puccini’s La Bohème, Valentin in Gounod’s Faust, Tomsky in Tchaikovsky’s Queen of Spades, Count di Luna in Verdi’s Il Trovatore, Shchelkalov in Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov, Count Anckarström in Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera,and Riccardo in Bellini’s I Puritani. Recent performances this season include the title role of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin at the Vienna State Opera and Germont in Verdi’s La Traviata at the Bolshoi Theatre.

Azerbaijani baritone Elchin Azizov reprises the role of Ibn-Hakia, a role in which he made his Met debut in this production’s premiere during the 2014–15 season. He has recently sung a number of roles with the Bolshoi Theatre, including Germont in Verdi’s La Traviata, Lescaut in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut, Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen, and Rodrigo in Verdi’s Don Carlo. Upcoming performances include Lescaut and Count Tomsky in The Queen of Spades at the Bolshoi Theatre. Earlier this season he was seen as Abimélech in the Met’s new production of Saint-Saëns’s Samson et Dalila, which was seen around the world as part of The Met: Live in HD.

Ukrainian bass Vitalij Kowaljow makes his company role debut as René. He made his Met debut as the High Priest in Verdi’s Nabucco in 2003. Since then he has been seen in a variety of roles at the Met, including Lodovico in Verdi’s Otello, Ramfis in Verdi’s Aida, the Old Hebrew in Saint-Saën’s Samson et Dalila, Sparafucile in Verdi’s Rigoletto, Sarastro in Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Oroveso in Bellini’s Norma,and Raimondo in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor. Later this season, he will reprise Ramfis at the Met.

German soprano Angela Denoke, who sings the role of Judith, made her Met debut in 2005 as the Marschallin in Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier. She is renowned for her performances of 19th- and 20th-century opera, including roles such as Katarina in Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk and Marie in Berg’s Wozzeck. This season, she will also sing Herodias in Strauss’s Salome at Cologne Opera.

Canadian bass-baritone Gerald Finley adds a new role to his Met repertory as Bluebeard. He has sung nine roles at the Met, including the title roles of Rossini’s Guillaume Tell andMozart's Don Giovanni, Athanaël in Massenet’s Thaïs, Count Almaviva in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Golaud in Debussy’s Pelléas et Mélisande, J. Robert Oppenheimer in the Met premiere of John Adams’s Doctor Atomic, Nick Shadow in Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, and Papageno in Die Zauberflöte for his debut in 1998. Other performances this season include Iago in Verdi’s Otello at the Bavarian State Opera, Canadian Opera Company, and the Munich Opera Festival.

Hungarian conductor Henrik Nánási makes his Met debut with this production. He was the general music director of Komische Oper Berlin from 2012 to 2017, where he conducted Tchaikovsky’s Mazeppa and Eugene Onegin; Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi;  Offenbach’s La Belle Hélène; Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Così fan tutte, and Don Giovanni; and Bartók’s Bluebeard’s Castle. He has conducted at opera houses around the world, including Paris Opera, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, the Bavarian State Opera, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Oper Frankfurt, and the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. Earlier this season, he conducted performances of Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra at Covent Garden; later this season, he will conduct performances of Die Zauberflöte in Paris.


For More Information

For further details on Iolanta/Bluebeard’s Castle, including casting by date, please click here.



Iolanta / Bluebeard’s Castle

Music by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky / Béla Bartók

Libretto by Modest Tchaikovsky / Béla Balázs


Thursday, January 24 at 8:00 p.m.

Monday, January 28 at 7:30 p.m.

Friday, February 1 at 7:30 p.m.

Monday, February 4 at 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 9 at 12:30 p.m.

Thursday, February 14 at 7:30 p.m.




Henrik Nánási* 


Mariusz Trelinski

Set Designer

Boris Kudlicka

Costume Designer

Marek Adamski

Lighting Designer

Marc Heinz

Video Projection Designer

Bartek Macias

Sound Designer

Mark Grey


Tomasz Jan Wygoda


Piotr Gruszczynski








Sonya Yoncheva


Matthew Polenzani


Alexey Markov (Jan. 24, 28; Feb. 1, 4, 9mat)


Lucas Meachem (Feb. 14)


Elchin Azizov


Vitalij Kowaljow (Jan. 24, 28; Feb. 1, 4, 9mat)


Alexander Roslavets* (Feb. 14)


Bluebeard’s Castle



Angela Denoke


Gerald Finley


*Met debut



Co-production of the Metropolitan Opera and Teatr Wielki-Polish National Opera


Production a gift of Ambassador and Mrs. Nicholas F. Taubman


Additional funding from Mrs. Veronica Atkins; Dr. Magdalena Berenyi,

in memory of Dr. Kalman Berenyi; and the National Endowment for the Arts


For prices and ticket information, please call (212) 362-6000 or visit

Special rates for groups of 10 or more are available by calling (212) 341-5410 or visiting