Nightly Opera Streams, March 15–21
Viewers’ Choice Week
The results are in! We asked viewers worldwide to help curate the next week of Nightly Opera Streams, and now we’re presenting your top selections—counting down to the No. 1 choice, the 2020 Live in HD transmission of Handel’s Agrippina. 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 week of Nightly Opera Streams curated by viewers around the globe. Explore the exciting lineup this guide.
View the Playbills from the original performance dates for each stream, including synopses, program notes, and more.
Akhnaten Grows in Brooklyn
Shortly before the Met premiere of Glass’s Akhnaten, its star Anthony Roth Costanzo joined with the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Mannes Orchestra, and Gandini Juggling to perform excerpts at the Brooklyn Museum.
In Focus: Agrippina
Learn more about Handel’s searing political satire, which had its Met premiere during the 2019–20 season.
All Hail the Queen
Star diva Anna Netrebko opened the 2011–12 season in the title role of Donizetti’s Anna Bolena, headlining Sir David McVicar’s historically detailed Met-premiere production.
Designer Catherine Zuber has charmed theatergoers—and won seven Tony Awards—for her breathtaking costumes for the Great White Way. Before the 2006 premiere of Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Zuber talked about sexing up the look of Rossini’s classic comedy.
With his production of Les Contes d’Hoffmann, which opened during the 2009–10 season, director Bartlett Sher created a Kafkaesque new staging of Offenbach’s phantasmagorical masterpiece.
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.
How to Sing Rossini
Hear directly from Juan Diego Flórez and Peter Mattei, stars of the Live in HD performance of Il Barbiere di Siviglia, about what it takes to make Rossini’s music sing.
When in Rome
Joyce DiDonato discusses the mixture of ruthless political machinations and black comedy that makes Handel’s Agrippina—in which she plays the title role of the notorious Roman empress—so fascinating and rewarding.
Aria Code: Philip Glass’s Akhnaten
Dive into the details of the visionary pharaoh Akhnaten’s ecstatic Hymn to the Sun with countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo and host Rhiannon Giddens in this episode of our Aria Code podcast, a collaboration with WQXR.
The 1910 world premiere of Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West at the Met was an enormous event for the then-young company. This Playbill article from the 2010 performances of the opera takes a look at that historic occasion from a century on.
Music in the Air
One of the most memorable aspects of Phelim McDermott’s production of Akhnaten, created in collaboration with the pioneering theater group Improbable, is its incorporation of mesmerizing juggling, designed by choreographer and juggling master Sean Gandini, which seems to make Philip Glass’s music appear before your very eyes.
Donizetti’s Tudor Queens at the Met
The revival of the bel canto repertoire that began in the mid–20th century was late in coming to the Met, but the company has made up for lost time in recent years, including with important productions of Donizetti’s three operas based on the lives of Anne Boleyn, Mary Stuart, and Elizabeth I.
La Fanciulla del West: In Focus
A gun-slinging heroine. A romantic tale of the Wild West. The first great opera with an American setting. Learn more about Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West with our In Focus podcast.
Silence Is Golden
When an artist appears on the Met stage, there is generally some noise—but not for Rob Besserer, who appears in Il Barbiere di Siviglia in the mute role of Ambrogio.
Introducing Anna Bolena
To open the 2011–12 season, Anna Netrebko gave the company its first-ever portrayal of Donizetti’s Anne Boleyn. In this video about the Met premiere production of Anna Bolena, Netrebko and director David McVicar discuss the dazzling opera’s many merits.
Behind the Scenes of Eugene Onegin
Orchestra and stage rehearsals, costume fittings, and conversations with the all-star cast: Go backstage with Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Renée Fleming, and conductor Valery Gergiev as they prepare for the 2007 performances of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin.
Aria Code: Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann
Dive into the details of Hoffmann’s aria “Ô Dieu! de quelle ivresse” with tenor Matthew Polenzani and host Rhiannon Giddens in this episode of our Aria Code podcast, a collaboration with WQXR.
The Empress Strikes Back
During the 2019–20 season, the Met presented Agrippina for the first time, in a pointed production by Sir David McVicar that amplified the work’s satirical relevance.
From the Archives: Eugene Onegin at the Met
Tchaikovsky’s romantic adaptation of Pushkin got a slow start at the Metropolitan, but, especially in recent decades, it has become the most popular Russian opera in the company’s repertoire.
Phelim McDermott on Akhnaten
The inventive director discusses his ritualistic, dreamlike production of Philip Glass’s Akhnaten—including a virtuosic troupe of acrobats and jugglers—which had its Met premiere on November 8, 2019.
Superstar soprano Anna Netrebko has appeared in more Live in HD transmissions than any other principal artist. Watch highlights from a dozen of her roles, including this week’s stream of Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta.
Remembering Dmitri Hvorostovsky
The extraordinary and beloved Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky, who died in 2017, is featured in this week’s stream of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin.
Visionary set and costume designer John Macfarlane’s versatile aesthetic was on display in two very different new productions during the 2019–20 season, Handel’s Agrippina and Wagner’s Der Fliegende Höllander, the former of which streams this week.
Handel at the Met
While the company hadn’t presented an opera by Handel before 1984, in recent years, the composer’s works have appeared with increasing frequency on the Met stage.
Monday, March 15
Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann
Starring Anna Netrebko, Kathleen Kim, Ekaterina Gubanova, Kate Lindsey, Joseph Calleja, and Alan Held, conducted by James Levine. Production by Bartlett Sher. From December 19, 2009.
Tuesday, March 16
Puccini’s La Fanciulla del West
Starring Eva-Maria Westbroek, Jonas Kaufmann, and Željko Lučić, conducted by Marco Armiliato. Production by Giancarlo Del Monaco. From October 27, 2018.
Wednesday, March 17
Donizetti’s Anna Bolena
Starring Anna Netrebko, Ekaterina Gubanova, Tamara Mumford, Stephen Costello, and Ildar Abdrazakov, conducted by Marco Armiliato. Production by Sir David McVicar. From October 15, 2011.
Thursday, March 18
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.
Friday, March 19
Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia
Sstarring Joyce DiDonato, Juan Diego Flórez, Peter Mattei, John Del Carlo, and John Relyea, conducted by Maurizio Benini. Production by Bartlett Sher. From March 24, 2007.
Sunday, March 21
Starring Brenda Rae, Joyce DiDonato, Kate Lindsey, Iestyn Davies, Duncan Rock, and Matthew Rose, conducted by Harry Bicket. Production by Sir David McVicar. From February 29, 2020.