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La Gioconda

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Set in 17th-century Venice and featuring one plot twist after another, Ponchielli’s most popular opera has been a guilty pleasure for generations of audiences. The composer was a mentor of Giacomo Puccini, and the score for this 1876 opera clearly foreshadows the verismo movement—both in its hot-blooded dramatic situations and its gutsy vocal displays. In this classic radio broadcast from the old Met, a cast of remarkable golden-age singers takes the stage. Legendary soprano Zinka Milanov stars in the title role, opposite mezzo-soprano Risë Stevens as her rival, Laura. Tenor Richard Tucker is the ardent Enzo, who sings the rapturous aria “Cielo e mar,” alongside baritone Leonard Warren as the sinister Barnaba, bass Giacomo Vaghi as Alvise, and mezzo-soprano Margaret Harshaw as La Cieca. Emil Cooper conducts.

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Performance Info

Performance Date

Mar 16, 1946


Amilcare Ponchielli


Arrigo Boito

Run Time

2 HRS 38 MIN

The Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, Chorus, and Ballet