BWW Review: Finally, Netrebko Gives Us a Gala Opening at the Met, with Spectacular AIDABWW Review: Finally, Netrebko Gives Us a Gala Opening at the Met, with Spectacular AIDA
by Richard Sasanow - Sep 29, 2018

The synopsis of Verdi's AIDA, with Ghislanzoni's smart libretto, places it in 'Egypt, during the reign of the pharaohs.' For the first performance of the opera this season, on Wednesday, they should have changed that to 'during the reign of soprano Anna Netrebko,' because she owned the stage from the moment she entered. (more...)

GREAT PERFORMANCES Season 12 Continues Sunday, July 8 on PBS with Rossini's SEMIRAMIDEGREAT PERFORMANCES Season 12 Continues Sunday, July 8 on PBS with Rossini's SEMIRAMIDE
by TV News Desk - Jun 26, 2018

Season 12 of Great Performances at the Met continues Sunday, July 8 on PBS (check local listings) with a rare Met performance of Rossini's masterpiece Semiramide, starring Angela Meade as the titular Queen of Babylon and Elizabeth DeShong as the warrior Arsace. Javier Camarena, Ildar Abdrazakov and Ryan Speedo Greencomplete the all-star bel canto cast. (more...)

PBS' GREAT PERFORMANCES to Continue May 20 with Puccini's LA BOHEME Starring Michael Fabiano and Sonya YonchevaPBS' GREAT PERFORMANCES to Continue May 20 with Puccini's LA BOHEME Starring Michael Fabiano and Sonya Yoncheva
by TV News Desk - May 2, 2018

Season 12 of Great Performances at the Met continues Sunday, May 20 on PBS (check local listings) with one of the world's most popular operas, Puccini's La Bohème, starring Sonya Yoncheva as the fragile Mimì and Michael Fabiano as the poet Rodolfo. (more...)


by BWW News Desk - Feb 15, 2018

The Met: Live in HD, the Metropolitan Opera's award-winning series of live high-definition cinema simulcasts, will begin its 13th season on October 6, with the Met's grand production of Verdi's Aida, starring one of the world's most acclaimed sopranos, Anna Netrebko. (more...)

Review Roundup: LA BOHEME at The Metropolitan OperaReview Roundup: LA BOHEME at The Metropolitan Opera
by BWW News Desk - Oct 4, 2017

Giacomo Puccini's LA BOHEME will play at The Metropolitan Opera through March of 2018, and the critics are weighing in! (more...)

Mozart's Early Masterpiece 'Idomeneo' Conducted by James Levine Comes to GREAT PERFORMANCES
by BWW News Desk - Jun 26, 2017

Tenor Matthew Polenzani sings the title role of the King of Crete, with mezzo-soprano Alice Coote in the trouser role of his noble son Idamante, soprano Elza van den Heever as Elettra, and soprano Nadine Sierra as Ilia.              (more...)

BWW Review: Stars Align in Met's BOHEME with Opolais, Beczala, Kele and Cavalletti
by Richard Sasanow - Nov 28, 2016

Take Puccini's LA BOHEME for granted at your peril. Sure, it has more gorgeous music per square inch than just about any other opera in the repertoire, but that doesn't mean that it always falls together, even at the Met. Lucky for those attending the current run of the opera, the stars are in alignment--with Kristine Opolais (Mimi), Piotr Beczala (Rodolfo), Brigitta Kele (Musetta) and Massimo Cavalletti (Marcello) as the stellar central quartet and not a weak link down the line. (more...)

American Ballet Theatre Announces 2016 Fall Season
by BWW News Desk - Jul 13, 2016

Programming for American Ballet Theatre's 2016 Fall Season, October 19-30, at the David H. Koch Theater was announced today by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie.  The season will feature a World Premiere by Jessica Lang, the Company Premiere of Daphnis and Chloe by Benjamin Millepied and revivals of George Balanchine's Prodigal Son and Frederick Ashton's Symphonic Variations. (more...)

BWW Opera Review: Oh, To Be Abducted from This SERAGLIO at the Met
by Richard Sasanow - May 4, 2016

I wonder whether James Levine imagined that Mozart's DIE ENFUHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL (THE ABDUCTION FROM THE SERAGLIO) would be his swan song as Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera. I think he might have chosen better. (more...)

BWW Review: All Puccini, All the Time at the Met with LA BOHEME and TURANDOT
by Richard Sasanow - Jan 25, 2016

Sometimes, the Metropolitan Opera seems like an endless Puccini festival. It's particularly apparent this season, when top dogs LA BOHEME, TOSCA and MADAMA BUTTERFLY are joined by TURANDOT and MANON LESCAUT, which are not second drawer, though certainly less popular than the first three. (Let's see how that descriptor applies to the latter when Jonas Kaufmann steps on stage for the new production of LESCAUT.) (more...)

BWW Review: Let's Hear It for the Boys, in TANNHAUSER at the Met
by Richard Sasanow - Oct 21, 2015

Almost 40 years ago, on short notice, the great tenor Jon Vickers (who died this summer at 90) caused a scandal when he pulled out of the premiere of the Met's still-current production of Wagner's 'Tannhauser' because he considered the opera anti-Christian. Well, nothing that exciting happened when tenor Johan Botha took the stage in the title role of the opera last week--merely some wonderful singing. (more...)

BWW Reviews: Without Gypsies or Mistaken Identities, Soprano Meade Wins Four-Sided Tug of War in ERNANI at the Met
by Richard Sasanow - Apr 2, 2015

Nine years before IL TROVATORE took the prize for Verdi's most outlandish story line--with gypsies, stolen babies and mistaken identities--there was ERNANI, with a different kind of complicated plot to make your head spin. The Met's current revival of its 1983 production of the opera stars a formidable quartet: soprano Angela Meade, tenor Franceso Meli, bass-baritone Dmitry Belosselskiy and, last but certainly not least, tenor/baritone Placido Domingo. (more...)

BWW Reviews: No Gods but Plenty of Masters in DIE MEISTERSINGER at the Met
by Richard Sasanow - Dec 12, 2014

I never ran a marathon, but I sure sat through one the other night at the Met. Richard Wagner's DIE MEISTERSINGER clocked in at six hours--a quarter of a day--without a god or flying horse in sight. And while the composer referred to this as a comedy, it's not exactly “I Love Lucy” (nor, for that matter, LE NOZZE DI FIGARO). (more...)

BWW Reviews: Soprano Sonya Yoncheva Brings Voluptuous Sound to Debut in Stellar Ensemble of Met BOHEME
by Richard Sasanow - Dec 5, 2014

Puccini's LA BOHEME has that magical ability to change its shape depending on the cast. When Pavarotti sang, it became his opera, with a Mimi hard pressed to take the spotlight, even in her death scene. When Stratas, Carreras and Scotto (as Musetta) led the cast, it became a glittery ensemble of shooting stars. At this week's performance with rising star Bulgarian soprano Sonya Yoncheva as Mimi, there was no doubt that she was the evening's “it” girl, even though the other principal singers added mightily to the performance's success. (more...)

THE MERRY WIDOW, LES CONTES D'HOFFMANN and More Set for The Met's 2014-15 Live in HD Season, Kicking Off Today
by BWW News Desk - Oct 11, 2014

The Met: Live in HD, the Metropolitan Opera's award-winning series of live transmissions to more than 2,000 movie theaters in 65 countries around the world, will feature ten operas in the 2014-15 season, including all six new productions in the Met season. All ten performances, transmitted live from the Met stage, will feature the world's finest singers, conductors, and theatrical artists. (more...)

BWW Reviews: New Voices Add Luster to LA BOHEME at the Met
by Richard Sasanow - Mar 23, 2014

I thought someone spiked the water cooler backstage at the Met during the first half of LA BOHEME on March 19. Tenor Vittorio Grigolo's Rodolfo jumped around in the opening scene like he had too much caffeine or needed medication for hyperactivity (think Ritalin). Charming, yes, boyish, definitely, but when he professed his love for Mimi after half an hour's acquaintance, one wondered whether he didn't need something to calm him down. And he wasn't alone. (more...)

THE MERRY WIDOW, LES CONTES D'HOFFMANN and More Set for The Met's 2014-15 Live in HD Season
by BWW News Desk - Feb 12, 2014

The Met: Live in HD, the Metropolitan Opera's award-winning series of live transmissions to more than 2,000 movie theaters in 65 countries around the world, will feature ten operas in the 2014-15 season, including all six new productions in the Met season. All ten performances, transmitted live from the Met stage, will feature the world's finest singers, conductors, and theatrical artists. (more...)

BWW Reviews: Very Little Night Music from the Met's DER ROSENKAVALIER
by Richard Sasanow - Nov 25, 2013

On Broadway, when a revival loses two out of three of its stars, the production might very well be put off until another season or, at worst, the producers might pack it in. In the opera world, companies don't have that luxury, particularly at a showplace like the Metropolitan Opera. Thus, we received Richard Strauss's DER ROSENKAVALIER, which made its season debut at the Met on Friday night, offering replacements in the two key roles of Sophie and Octavian, with variable results. (more...)

The Met: Live in HD's 2013-14 Season Features 10 Live Transmissions, Beg. Today
by BWW News Desk - Oct 5, 2013

The Met: Live in HD, the Metropolitan Opera's award-winning series of live transmissions to movie theaters, will feature 10 productions in the 2013-14 season, offering a significant portion of the Met season to opera lovers around the world. (more...)

BWW Reviews: The Met's Stirring Production of Poulenc's DIALOGUES DES CARMELITES is 'the Anti-Machine'
by Richard Sasanow - May 7, 2013

What would the Metropolitan Opera (and its audiences) do without its production of Francis Poulenc's DIALOGUES DES CARMELITES, which opened for the season with Saturday's matinee, May 4? As created in 1977 for its Met premiere by director John Dexter, this CARMELITES is unlike anything else in the company's repertoire--simply designed and a showcase for a brilliant ensemble of female voices. It is a reminder that opera productions can be moving, effective and, yes, thrilling in the most understated ways. (more...)

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