Presents Top Opera And More This December Presents Top Opera And More This December

This December, more of the world's top opera performances will be presented on than ever before, enhancing the site's must-see schedule of live events and vintage programming. Live from Paris on December 8 comes Verdi's La forza del destino starring Marcelo Alvarez, and there will be a wealth of video-on-demand performances of landmark opera productions, including Massenet's Werther with Jonas Kaufmann, Bellini's La sonnambula with Natalie Dessay, and Mozart's Don Giovanni with Gerald Finley. Also available on in December will be more than 30 vintage music films by prize-winning director Christopher Nupen, including five showcasing beloved cellist Jacqueline du Pré. For the holiday season, will also be offering subscription gift cards, for three, six, or twelve months.

Recognized as the go-to experience for classical music on the internet, earns more worldwide acclaim every month, with the Toronto Star pointing out that " initiated a seismic shift in the world of classical music." New Yorker writer Alex Ross said on his blog, The Rest Is Noise, that "the hits keep coming at"

Among the new live events this December is "Leonard Slatkin's America," a concert that sees the conductor leading the Orchestre National de Lyon and piano soloist James Tocco in a program ranging from Ives and Gershwin to Duke Ellington and Leonard Bernstein's Piano Concerto No. 2 ("The Age of Anxiety"). The performance will be webcast live by on December 1 at 2pm EDT.

December also brings the live webcast of an all-Liszt piano recital from Lise de la Salle, performing at Paris's Auditorium du Louvre – where she made her debut at just 14 – on December 7 at 2pm EDT. Appearing live on for the first time, the pianist offers a program of original works by Liszt, including such famous piano transcriptions as his dazzling version of Wagner's Liebestod. De la Salle's most recent album, also dedicated to the Hungarian composer, was selected as a Gramophone "Editor's Choice" and awarded a Diapason d'Or.

Another December highlight will be La forza del destino from the Opéra Bastille – the work's first staging there in 30 years. The Jean-Claude Auvray production stars Violeta Urmana and Marcelo Alvarez, with Philippe Jordan on the podium. American Audiences will be among the first to see this performance when it is broadcast live on December 8 at 1pm EDT, before being made available to viewers in France and Belgium the following day.

In addition to these live webcasts, also offers an extensive library of video-on-demand programs, available via subscription. These performances, documentaries, and archival features spotlight leading musical institutions and world-class artists – from golden-age legends to today's top stars. Along with the star-studded 2010 Werther, La sonnambula, and Don Giovanni productions, newly available online this December, there will be Rameau's Platée in a 2009 production from Opéra National de Paris starring Mireille Delunsch and led by Marc Minkowski, and Verdi's La traviata from Opéra de Lyon. There are also such vocal treats as countertenor Philippe Jaroussky's recital from the 2009 Verbier Festival and a masterclass led by the great Teresa Berganza. The 30-plus Christopher Nupen films available on include not only the priceless du Pré documents (complete with Elgar's Cello Concerto and a number of all-star chamber performances) but also films of Evgeny Kissin, Vladimir Ashkenazy, and Nathan Milstein. All 32 Beethoven piano sonatas recorded by Daniel Barenboim in 1983-84 will be available by the year's end.

Offering "treasures aplenty" was how Gramophone editor-in-chief James Jolly described, designating it one of the Web's leading classical music experiences. The app for iPads, iPhones, and other digital devices – available for free at the Apple app store – was recently named one of the top five apps for classical music by WQXR, the classical music station of New York City.

Now, especially for the holiday season, is offering gift cards for subscriptions of three months (at $39), six months (at $69), or one year (at $119). The cards will be available for online purchase at, to be mailed directly as gifts.

December events live at

December 1, 2pm EDT
"Leonard Slatkin's America": Ives, Gershwin, Ellington, Bernstein, Rorem, etc.
Leonard Slatkin, conductor; James Tocco, piano; Orchestre National de Lyon; Big Band de la Musique de l'Air