Donizetti's L'Elisir d'Amore
Opens September 24, 2012

 
Watch an interview with director Bartlett Sher

Anna Netrebko and Matthew Polenzani star in one of the greatest comic gems in opera, as the fickle Adina and her besotted Nemorino. Bartlett Sher guides this lively production, where surface charm meets with real emotion. Mariusz Kwiecien is the blustery sergeant Belcore and Ambrogio Maestri is Dulcamara, the loveable quack and dispenser of the elixir. Maurizio Benini conducts.

"What I love about Elisir is that you have the best of the glorious Italian comic tradition, but with characters of great depth. It is filled with enormous inventiveness and beauty, while the sense of proportion is exactly right. It’s a masterpiece." —Bartlett Sher

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Adès's The Tempest
Opens October 23, 2012

Watch an interview with director Robert Lepage

Audio excerpt courtesy of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and Faber Music Ltd., London.

Composer Thomas Adès conducts the Met premiere of his 2004 work, which has been widely acclaimed as a modern masterpiece. Director Robert Lepage recreates the interior of 18th-century La Scala, including the hidden workings underneath the stage, where Prospero, the banished duke of Milan, practices his otherworldly arts. Baritone Simon Keenlyside stars in the leading role, which he has sung to great acclaim in London.

"The Tempest is an extraordinary, exquisite composition. The opera captures the magic of Shakespeare’s last play. It is a box full of magic tricks, which makes it a gift for me and for the designers." —Robert Lepage

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Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera
Opens November 8, 2012

Watch an interview with director David Alden

David Alden’s dreamlike setting provides a compelling backdrop for Verdi’s dramatic story of betrayal, jealousy, and vengeance. Marcelo Álvarez stars as the conflicted king; Sondra Radvanovsky is Amelia, the object of his secret passion; and Dmitri Hvorostovsky is her suspicious husband. Kathleen Kim is the page Oscar, and powerhouse mezzo-sopranos Dolora Zajick and Stephanie Blythe take turns singing the fortuneteller Ulrica. Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi is on the podium.

"Un Ballo in Maschera is one of Verdi’s greatest and most brilliant scores, with a variety of different colors. it alternates between the light and the intensely melodramatic. Verdi pulls it all together with unbelievable theatrical energy. Ballo is theatrical dynamite." —David Alden

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Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda
Opens December 31, 2012

Watch an interview with director David McVicar

Fresh from her triumph in The Enchanted Island, mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato takes on the virtuosic bel canto role of the doomed Mary Queen of Scots. Having scored a major success with his production of Anna Bolena, director David McVicar now turns to the second opera of Donizetti’s Tudor trilogy. Elza van den Heever sings Elizabeth I, and Maurizio Benini conducts.

"Donizetti’s Tudor operas are very different in tone, mood, and musical content. the romantic sweep of the Maria Stuarda score is the most purely bel canto of the three, and we wanted to honor that in what we see onstage—we’re telling a vivid, dramatic story through music that glories in the possibilities of the human voice." —David McVicar

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Verdi's Rigoletto 
Opens January 28, 2013

Watch an interview with director Michael Mayer

Michael Mayer has placed his new production of Verdi’s towering tragedy in Las Vegas in 1960—an ideal setting for this eternal conflict of depravity and innocence. In his staging, Piotr Beczala is the womanizing duke of Mantua, with Željko Lučić as his tragic sidekick, Rigoletto. Diana Damrau is Rigoletto’s daughter—and their victim. Michele Mariotti conducts.

"I’ve tried to imagine a recent world that captures the decadence of the Duke’s palace, where the participants are in pursuit of power, money, and beauty. Las Vegas in the ’60s is such a world, where a kind of prankster energy could go bad—it’s the epitome of the kinds of events that happen in Rigoletto." —Michael Mayer

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Wagner's Parsifal 
Opens February 15, 2013

Watch an interview with director François Girard

François Girard’s timeless new vision for Wagner’s final masterpiece explores the many facets of this mystical score, while designer Michael Levine creates a surreal landscape. Jonas Kaufmann stars in the title role of the innocent who finds wisdom. His fellow Wagnerians include Katarina Dalayman as the mysterious Kundry, Peter Mattei as the ailing Amfortas, Evgeny Nikitin as the wicked Klingsor, and René Pape as the noble knight Gurnemanz. Daniele Gatti conducts.

"Parsifal is not just an opera—it’s a mission. At the end of his life, Wagner was trying to reconcile all the aspects of his spirituality. It’s a sacred piece in the history of music." —François Girard

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Handel’s Giulio Cesare 
Opens April 4, 2013

Watch an interview with director David McVicar

David McVicar’s inventive production—a triumph at its Glyndebourne premiere in 2005—comes to the met. The Guardian praised the director’s "witty, sexy, and tragic post-colonial framing of Handel’s Caesar and Cleopatra tale," which incorporates elements of Baroque theater and 19th-century British imperialism to illuminate the opera’s ideas of love, war, and empire building. Countertenor David Daniels sings the title role opposite Natalie Dessay (pictured) as the exotic Cleopatra. Baroque specialist Harry Bicket conducts.

"Giulio Cesare is a kaleidoscope of an opera—a semi-comic, semi-tragic adventure story. you get romance, you get drama, you get moments of political wheeling-and-dealing, complex family relationships—as well as real emotion and tragedy. It’s a miracle, and it has enabled me to express everything I feel is important about opera." —David McVicar

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