Nightly Opera Streams, February 8–14
Black History Month at the Met, Part II
Enjoy a second week of free Nightly Opera Streams paying tribute to some of the remarkable African American stars who have graced the Met stage. Explore the articles and resources below to expand your knowledge and enhance your experience as you enjoy the screenings. A full schedule for the week is available at the bottom of this page.
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Enjoy a second week of Nightly Opera Streams paying tribute to some of the remarkable Black singers who have graced the Met stage. Dive into the full lineup with this guide to the week.
View the Playbills from the original performance dates for each stream, including synopses, program notes, and more.
Black Voices at the Met
Our exhibition chronicling the extensive contributions made by African American artists at the Met and the decades-long struggle for racial equality at the nation's leading opera company—originally installed in the opera house in connection with the 2019 new production of Porgy and Bess—is now available in digital format.
Berlioz’s monumental Les Troyens opened the Met’s centennial season in 1983, with Jessye Norman making her company debut as the prophetess Cassandra. From the landmark telecast less than 2 weeks later, she sings “Malheureux Roi,” predicting disaster for the Trojans.
Bridges, Basketball, and Beyoncé
Live in HD Host Joyce DiDonato talks with breakout star mezzo-soprano J’Nai Bridges about singing the role of Nefertiti in Glass’s Akhnaten, her earlier years as a basketball player, and being hailed as the Beyoncé of opera.
Celebrated soprano Kathleen Battle, who stars in this week’s stream of Il Barbiere di Siviglia, mesmerized Met audiences with the purity and beauty of her voice. Read about her career with the company.
A Grand Entrance
Celebrated soprano Leona Mitchell sang more than 200 performances of 17 roles with the Met, including Elvira in Verdi’s Ernani, streamed this week in a 1983 telecast. Here, she sings Elvira’s challenging Act I entrance aria.
Jessye Norman, 1945–2019
In the fall of 2019, the entire Met family—along with the opera world at large—mourned the loss of Jessye Norman, one of the great sopranos of the past half-century.
Panel Discussion: Akhnaten and Satyagraha
In this panel discussion from summer 2020 in advance of the streams of Philip Glass’s Akhnaten and Satyagraha, General Manager Peter Gelb spoke with mezzo-soprano J’Nai Bridges, countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo, and director Phelim McDermott about Glass’s music, and Ms. Bridges talked about her experiences in the opera industry as an African American woman.
Legendary soprano Jessye Norman stars in two of this week’s streams. Here, she is an ecstatic Sieglinde in Wagner’s Die Walküre, rejoicing at the discovery that she is carrying Siegmund’s child.
Leitmotifs in Wagner’s Ring
Wagner’s use and development of musical themes known as leitmotifs create a symbolic undercurrent of meaning throughout the Ring cycle. In this video, members of the Met Orchestra play and discuss some of the themes.
Featured in last week’s stream of Dialogues of the Carmelites, mezzo-soprano Florence Quivar returns this week as the fortune teller Ulrica in Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera, who tries to summon her powers by calling out to the devil himself.
Here Comes the Sun
The 2019–20 season saw the company premiere of Philip Glass’s transcendental Akhnaten, which starred countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo as the enigmatic title pharaoh who radically transformed ancient Egyptian society.
Wagner’s Norse Obsession
Mythology provided Wagner with a steady supply of gods, goddesses, and psychosexual dynamism to satisfy his rich and ingenious imagination. Learn more about the composer’s Nordic sources of inspiration.
From the Archives: Berlioz at the Met
The works of French master Hector Berlioz have appeared with increasing frequency at the Met in the last half century, with all but one of his remarkable operas having been staged by the company.
Die Walküre: In Focus
The quest for the all-powerful ring continues with the second installment of Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen. Learn more about Die Walküre with our In Focus podcast.
Verdi at the Met
The operas of Giuseppe Verdi have been performed around 5,700 times at the Metropolitan Opera, more than those of any other composer by a wide margin.
Akhnaten: In Focus
An ancient tale made modern through Philip Glass’s mesmerizing and distinctive musical style—learn more about Akhnaten with an episode our In Focus podcast.
Wagner at the Met
Learn about the storied history of Wagner’s operas at the Met, from the house’s opening season in 1883 to the present day.
Monday, February 8
Wagner’s Das Rheingold
Starring Wendy Bryn Harmer, Stephanie Blythe, Patricia Bardon, Richard Croft, Gerhard Siegel, Dwayne Croft, Bryn Terfel, Eric Owens, Franz-Josef Selig, and Hans-Peter König, conducted by James Levine. Production by Robert Lepage. From October 9, 2010.
Tuesday, February 9
Starring Leona Mitchell, Luciano Pavarotti, Sherrill Milnes, and Ruggero Raimondi, conducted by James Levine. Production by Pier Luigi Samaritani. From December 17, 1983.
Wednesday, February 10
Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia
Starring Kathleen Battle, Rockwell Blake, Leo Nucci, Enzo Dara, and Ferruccio Furlanetto, conducted by Ralf Weikert. Production by John Cox. From December 3, 1988.
Thursday, February 11
Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera
Starring Aprile Millo, Harolyn Blackwell, Florence Quivar, Luciano Pavarotti, and Leo Nucci, conducted by James Levine. Production by Piero Faggioni. From January 26, 1991.
Friday, February 12
Philip Glass’s Akhnaten
Starring Dísella Lárusdóttir, J’Nai Bridges, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Aaron Blake, Will Liverman, Richard Bernstein, and Zachary James, conducted by Karen Kamensek. Production by Phelim McDermott. From November 23, 2019.
Sunday, February 14
Wagner’s Die Walküre
Starring Hildegard Behrens, Jessye Norman, Christa Ludwig, Gary Lakes, James Morris, and Kurt Moll, conducted by James Levine. Production by Otto Schenk. From April 8, 1989.