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2019-2020 Season Opening Night  – PORGY AND BESS

Robertson; Blue, Schultz, Moore, Graves, Ballentine, Owens, Walker, Speedo Green
Monday September 23 – 6 pm EDT 
 
Live Broadcast on SiriusXM and Met Opera Radio

 

THE RING CYCLE Encore Broadcasts

Thursday 9/19 – 9 pm EDT  DAS RHEINGOLD  (3/14/2019) Jordan; Grimsley, Ernst, Konieczny, Barton, Groissböck, Belosselskiy
Friday 9/20 -6 pm EDT  DIE WALKUERE  (3/20/2019) Jordan; Goerke, Grimsley, Westbroek, Skelton, Barton, Groissböck
Saturday 9/21 -6 pm EDT  SIEGFRIED (4/13/2019) Jordan; Vinke, Goerke, Volle, Cargill, Siegel, Konieczny
Sunday 9/22 -6 pm EDT  GOTTERDAMMERUNG  (4/27/2019) Jordan; Goerke, Schager, Owens, Schuster, Haller, Nikitin

 
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Sep
19
Thu
2019
DAS RHEINGOLD
Sep 19 @ 9:00 pm – 11:55 pm


DAS RHEINGOLD:Wagner
Original Air Date: 03/14/2019
Jordan; Harmer, Barton, Cargill, Ernst, Siegel, Grimsley, Konieczny, Groissböck, Belosselskiy
SID.19380428
Wagner’s visionary initial installment of the Ring Cycle depicts the original sin of the theft of the sacred golden treasure, the vanity of the gods, the greed of the Nibelungen, the fratricide of the giants, and the building of Valhalla. Bass-baritone Greer Grimsley and baritone Michael Volle share the role of Wotan, the conflicted lord of the gods. Mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton sings her first Wagner role at the Met as Wotan’s embattled wife, Fricka. In collaboration with Ex Machina

Sep
20
Fri
2019
GIULIO CESARE
Sep 20 @ 12:00 am – 3:00 am


GIULIO CESARE:Handel
Original Air Date: 04/17/1999
Nelson; Larmore, McNair, Daniels, Blythe, Asawa
MOD Audio SID.19380529
This is the first Met broadcast of Cesare as the 1988 production with Troyanos and Battle was not broadcast (a special shame because of Troyanos’ way with Handel) This was an early success for both Blythe and Daniels, but this is still not my work — too many countertenors and too few ensembles. Brian Asawa recently passed away, and was one of the major groundbreaking countertenors.

THAÏS
Sep 20 @ 6:00 am – 9:00 am


THAÏS:Massenet
Original Air Date: 01/28/1978
Pritchard; Sills, Milnes, Gibbs
SID.19380530
For a long time this was the only Met broadcast of Thais, but with Fleming’s effort in 2008 one can hear a much fresher sound in the title role. I love Massenet, but I often prefer Esclarmonde to Thais (Manon and Werther are better by far). It’s on twice a year, but has seemed more frequent. 7/31/12 Fleming was far preferable. The Sills performance is on MOoD as is the Fleming video. Has been on Sirius a lot. I’m not a big fan of the performance. 3/7/12 This returns after several months layoff. Sills is not an especially good Thais, but why not mark this down for twice a year. 9/20/11 Through no demand from me, here comes the Thais again. I prefer the opera to L’assedio di Corinto, but do not show Sills off in a flattering light. It is also available as often as you want to hear it on Met Player. 5/9/11 Thank goodness this was NOT videoed. Sills did not have enough vocal allure for this role. Fleming’s broadcast and video are available in every format including Met Player, as well as a commercial CD that precedes her Met performances by several years. This Sills Thais is on Met Player and appears disproportionately often in the rotation. Sills clearly brought a number of people to opera but she was one of the first singers I grew weary of because of excessive hype. Her Cleopatra was very fine at NYCO.

COSÌ FAN TUTTE
Sep 20 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm


COSÌ FAN TUTTE:Mozart
Original Air Date: 02/27/1982
Levine; Lorengar, Rendall, Ewing, Carlson, Battle, Gramm
MOD Audio SID.19380531
This is Lorengar’s broadcast farewell (actual farewell the following week) in one of her best roles. I saw her in this Met run as well as her DC appearance with her home company, Deutsche Oper, Berlin under Bohm. Ewing is a delicious Dorabella, and Levine knows how to make this work grab you.

ADRIANA LECOUVREUR
Sep 20 @ 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm


ADRIANA LECOUVREUR:Cilea
Original Air Date: 04/19/1969
Cleva; Tebaldi, Corelli, Dalis, Colzani
SID.19380532
Tebaldi loved the part of Adriana, but this broadcast finds her in rather frayed voice (after more than 30 Giocondas the previous two seasons). Corelli, Dalis, and Colzani are strong support.

IL TROVATORE
Sep 20 @ 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm


IL TROVATORE:Verdi
Original Air Date: 04/09/1977
Veltri; McCracken, Scotto, Verrett, Quilico, Smith
SID.19380533
Azucena is one of Verrett’s best roles, and she has three excellent broadcasts, 1971, this one, and a 1987 performance which is Sutherland’s farewell. Scotto understands the style, but a smoother, more velvety voice is called for. McCracken who is 3d in Met Manricos (only Martinelli’s 69 and Baum’s 60 are higher has only one other Trovatore broadcast from 1969 which is Bumbry’s only Met broadcast Azucena. Could we get that rebroadcast on Sirius sometime? Bumbry is severely underrepresented on Met Opera on Demand with only one Amneris, one Carmen, and one Salome. She’s a Kennedy Center honoree, and has many distinguished broadcasts. McCracken only has 4 performances in MOoD, the same as Baum.

DIE WALKÜRE
Sep 20 @ 6:00 pm – 11:55 pm


DIE WALKÜRE:Wagner
Original Air Date: 03/30/2019
Jordan; Goerke, Westbroek, Barton, Skelton, Grimsley, Groissböck
Live in HD SID.19380534
In what is expected to be a Wagnerian event for the ages, soprano Christine Goerke, in her MET role debut, plays Brünnhilde, Wotan’s willful warrior daughter, who loses her immortality in opera’s most famous act of filial defiance. Tenor Stuart Skelton and soprano Eva-Maria Westbroek play the incestuous twins Siegmund and Sieglinde. Greer Grimsley sings Wotan. Philippe Jordan conducts.

Sep
21
Sat
2019
ARABELLA
Sep 21 @ 12:00 am – 3:00 am


ARABELLA:Strauss
Original Air Date: 03/17/1984
Janowski; Andrade, Nentwig, Battle, Rendall, Dunn, Mazura
SID.19380535
I like Janowski very much as a conductor, but the substitution of Andrade for Te Kanawa who did the rest of the run lowers the voltage considerably, and Nentwig is not a high profile Mandryka for my taste; here was a role George London was absolutely perfect for, and it’s a shame the translation challenges of Sirius seem to keep the Kempe led Met premiere season off the air with Steber and London truly inspired. The problems with translations fall on deaf ears here since the translation was by John Gutman, longtime Met asst. Manager. For real value rebroadcast this less often and get London and Steber on the air– it’s the Met at its best.

TOSCA
Sep 21 @ 6:00 am – 9:00 am


TOSCA:Puccini
Original Air Date: 04/17/1965
Cleva; Crespin, Kónya, Merrill
SID.19380636
Crespin the first singer to repeat Tosca in more than a decade before the Met broadcast microphones. if you savor the Gallic tang with a dollop of Roman pepper, she is a fine Tosca. This performance has been on before, but they don’t overuse it. She was the first Tosca to repeat her Floria on the airwaves. Bing had 9 different Toscas from 1952 until 1968 when Crespin repeated with a slightly better cast. Both have been on Sirius. This broadcast finds her in marginally better voice, and is Merrill’s only Scarpia broadcast (he only has 12) and while no match dramatically for Warren or early MacNeil (Gobbi never broadcast the role from the Met), Merrill certainly has some vocal artillery to display. Arguably the most beautiful baritone voice and right up there at the very top in any vocal category.

DON CARLO
Sep 21 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm


DON CARLO:Verdi
Original Air Date: 04/21/1984
Levine; Ciannella, Caballé, Bruson, Verrett, Plishka, Hines
SID.19380637
This performance is not on so often, and it is Bruson’s Met farewell–he is STILL singing!!! His Met debut was 15 years earlier on the broadcast Lucia with Moffo 2/1/69. He has a good sense of Verdian line, but I like a bit more squillo. Zancanaro is a tone more to my liking, but he always seemed to prefer fishing to visiting NYC. Caballe only has an opening night run of Toscas ahead of her (none broadcast), so this serves as her broadcast farewell. She’s a more uneven singer than when she arrived 20 years earlier, but only made it to 98 performances. She always seemed happier at Carnegie Hall and a music stand handy. At her best she could make some lovely sounds. Verrett is not in the first flush of youth either, but this cast — Ciannella excepted– are people well up to their roles, and since it is my favorite Verdian opera for sure and close to my all-time top, this performance makes a welcome addition to the week. Caballe’s first Elisabetta broadcast is from Bing’s final season (the one with the endlessly held B (I believe) with Bumbry, Siepi, Milnes, and Domingo which has not been on Sirius at all and except for the Scotto Troyanos video from 1980 there is nothing in the Met streaming service from 1964 (Rysanek, Corelli) till 1992, These two Caballe Don Carlos belong there. [Alas, the streaming service is still missing these Don Carlos]

DON CARLO
Sep 21 @ 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm


DON CARLO:Verdi
Original Air Date: 04/21/1984
Levine; Ciannella, Caballé, Bruson, Verrett, Plishka, Hines
SID.19380638
This performance is not on so often, and it is Bruson’s Met farewell–he is STILL singing!!! His Met debut was 15 years earlier on the broadcast Lucia with Moffo 2/1/69. He has a good sense of Verdian line, but I like a bit more squillo. Zancanaro is a tone more to my liking, but he always seemed to prefer fishing to visiting NYC. Caballe only has an opening night run of Toscas ahead of her (none broadcast), so this serves as her broadcast farewell. She’s a more uneven singer than when she arrived 20 years earlier, but only made it to 98 performances. She always seemed happier at Carnegie Hall and a music stand handy. At her best she could make some lovely sounds. Verrett is not in the first flush of youth either, but this cast — Ciannella excepted– are people well up to their roles, and since it is my favorite Verdian opera for sure and close to my all-time top, this performance makes a welcome addition to the week. Caballe’s first Elisabetta broadcast is from Bing’s final season (the one with the endlessly held B (I believe) with Bumbry, Siepi, Milnes, and Domingo which has not been on Sirius at all and except for the Scotto Troyanos video from 1980 there is nothing in the Met streaming service from 1964 (Rysanek, Corelli) till 1992, These two Caballe Don Carlos belong there. [Alas, the streaming service is still missing these Don Carlos]

EUGENE ONEGIN
Sep 21 @ 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm


EUGENE ONEGIN:Tchaikovsky
Original Air Date: 03/24/1979
Järvi; Mazurok, Kasrashvili, Shicoff, Jones, Plishka
SID.19380639
As much as I enjoy Hvorostovsky’s Onegin, I will never forget Mazurok live. He broadcasts the opera twice in 1979 (but in two separate seasons) and he is great both times. Kasrashvili is very good as is Shicoff. Mazurok’s later performance is Kabaivanska’s Met farewell and with Gedda under Tchakarov. I slightly prefer this one as Shicoff is heard too little on Met broadcasts, and this is one of his best roles. This peformance should be in MOoD. *** I always have time for Mazurok’s Onegin. While he may not have evoked the visualfrissons that Hvorostovsky regularly manages, when it comes to vocalism Mazurok was the Russian Robert Merrill, but with stylistic authenticity for his native repertoire. This performance has a lot of energy to it, and Kasrashvilil and Shicoff give their all. Credit to Jarvi for his leadership. *** This is the first of Mazurok’s 2 Onegin broadcasts (the second is only 9 months later in the next season), but I prefer this one because of Jarvi’s conducting. Mazurok was for me the Russian Merrill (meant as the highest compliment). We saw too little of him because this was not the best time for Soviet-American relations. He is thrilling here.

SIEGFRIED
Sep 21 @ 6:00 pm – 11:55 pm


SIEGFRIED:Wagner
Original Air Date: 04/13/2019
Jordan; Goerke, Morley, Cargill, Vinke, Siegel, Volle, Konieczny, Belosselskiy
SID.19380640

Sep
22
Sun
2019
WERTHER
Sep 22 @ 12:00 am – 3:00 am


WERTHER:Massenet
Original Air Date: 01/10/2004
Lacombe; Alagna, Kasarova, Petrova, Schaldenbrand
MOD Audio SID.19380641
Alagna has had steady employment at the Met in the last decade and his Werther is a solid accomplishment. Kasarova was not to my taste in the theater and even less so in audio only. Alagna made a hasty exit around the time of 9/11 and with the new Faust production (with Isokowski and Pape under Levine) in 2003. The following year this Werther showed him on good behavior, but I find Kasarova’s voice totally wrong for Massenet, and she didn’t make for much electricity with Alagna. Werther is more popular than Manon these days– a good bit shorter, and the Manon leads harder to cast well. In light of the mercurial (and new papa to be) Alagna, it will be interesting to hear this again. Kasarova took multiple attempts before finally showing up at the Met, and I felt her unusual timbre was not a good fit for Charlotte, nor an especially congenial match for Alagna. In many ways I feel as if Alagna sings better today. Let’s see if I feel the same way listening to this broadcast. When I saw this in the house in 2004 with this cast I was pretty disappointed. This was when Alagna’s singing was not really appealing at all. He had the style down, but I wish he would return to Werther with the kind of singing he has been doing the last two seasons. Both of Kraus’ fine performances (one with Crespin, the other with von Stade) are on Met Player.

MIGNON
Sep 22 @ 6:00 am – 9:00 am

,
MIGNON:Thomas
Original Air Date: 01/27/1945
Pelletier; Stevens, Melton, Benzell, Pinza
MOD Audio SID.19380642
“There are some great tunes in Mignon but I find the opera doesn’t hold up well — I saw it staged in Dallas with Horne (1974), and it was a LONG evening. Pinza is very fine here. Mignon’s last broadcast appearance is 3 years later with Marilyn Cotlow as Philine which is more than 6 decades ago. That Mignon “”farewell”” has not been on Sirius.”

GIULIO CESARE
Sep 22 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm


GIULIO CESARE:Handel
Original Air Date: 04/17/1999
Nelson; Larmore, McNair, Daniels, Blythe, Asawa
MOD Audio SID.19380743
This is the first Met broadcast of Cesare as the 1988 production with Troyanos and Battle was not broadcast (a special shame because of Troyanos’ way with Handel) This was an early success for both Blythe and Daniels, but this is still not my work — too many countertenors and too few ensembles. Brian Asawa recently passed away, and was one of the major groundbreaking countertenors.

IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA
Sep 22 @ 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm


IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA:Rossini
Original Air Date: 04/07/1973
Levine; Prey, Horne, Di Giuseppe, Corena, Tozzi
MOD Audio SID.19380744
From 1954 until 1976 Fernando Corena was the only Dr. Bartolo to appear on the Met airwaves. Of all Corena’s distinctive characterizations, none rank higher than Bartolo. It would be worthwhile for the Met to unearth its experimental taping (with NHK of Japan) from November 1968 so people could get a taste of his visuals as well. The byplay of Corena with Horne, as well as with familiar bass clef tandem, Tozzi are a special delight.

COSÌ FAN TUTTE
Sep 22 @ 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm


COSÌ FAN TUTTE:Mozart
Original Air Date: 02/27/1982
Levine; Lorengar, Rendall, Ewing, Carlson, Battle, Gramm
MOD Audio SID.19380745
This is Lorengar’s broadcast farewell (actual farewell the following week) in one of her best roles. I saw her in this Met run as well as her DC appearance with her home company, Deutsche Oper, Berlin under Bohm. Ewing is a delicious Dorabella, and Levine knows how to make this work grab you.

GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG
Sep 22 @ 6:00 pm – 11:55 pm


GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG:Wagner
Original Air Date: 04/27/2019
Jordan; Goerke, Haller, Schuster, Vinke, Nikitin, Konieczny, Owens
SID.19380746