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Composer: Richard Wagner
Librettist: Richard Wagner
Reiner; de los Angeles, Schöffler, Hopf, Pechner, GreindlMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 45 min.
Legendary conductor Fritz Reiner leads a magical performance of Wagner’s only comic opera. Victoria de los Angeles is an enchanting Eva, the young woman whose husband must be a Mastersinger—so says her father Pogner (Josef Greindl). But the knight she loves, Walther (Hans Hopf), doesn’t know any of the Mastersinger Guild’s rules, and his pedantic r...
Levine; Mattila, Heppner, Magnusson, Weikl, Prey, RooteringMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 4 hrs. 25 min.
James Levine’s love for Wagner’s great human comedy is evident in every measure of this performance, with the Met’s orchestra and chorus in thrilling form. Ben Heppner (Walther) and Karita Mattila (Eva) play the young couple in love, whose future happiness is threatened by the town clerk Beckmesser (Hermann Prey at the height of his powers), who wa...
Schippers; Lorengar, King, Driscoll, Adam, Kusche, FlagelloMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 3 hrs. 51 min.
In Wagner’s colorful portrait of medieval Nuremberg, the wealthy Pogner (Ezio Flagello) promises his beautiful daughter Eva (Pilar Lorengar) in marriage to the winner of a song contest. But the girl has already set her sights on the handsome Walther (James King). Naturally, various obstacles have to be overcome before the happy conclusion. Benno Ku...
Levine; Mattila, Heppner, Polenzani, Morris, Allen, PapeMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 4 hrs. 39 min.
Not many companies have the resources to put on Wagner’s only comedy with all the élan it deserves. The Met does, particularly when Music Director James Levine is conducting: his affection for the work is matched only by his skill at bringing it to life. Levine leads a top-flight cast of solo singers, plus a huge chorus and orchestra. James Morris ...
Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Solti; Price, Elias, Bergonzi, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 15 min.
This performance of Verdi’s towering Requiem Mass—given in memory of President John F. Kennedy—brings together four of the greatest Verdi singers of their generation. Soprano Leontyne Price, equally acclaimed for her soaring voice and the deep feeling she brought to all her performances, is ideally paired with mezzo-soprano Rosalind Elias in the st...
Levine; Price, Quivar, Domingo, CheekMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 18 min.
This extraordinary performance of Verdi’s unforgettable Requiem features a dream cast: soprano Leontyne Price, equally acclaimed for her soaring phrasing and the nobility with which she sings the words, is joined by Plácido Domingo, one of the great Verdi tenors of his generation, distinguished mezzo-soprano Florence Quivar, and magnificent bass Jo...
Composer: Benjamin Britten
Librettist: Benjamin Britten and Peter Pears, after Shakespeare
Atherton; McNair, Gustafson, Bunnell, Kowalski, Streit, Gilfry, RoseMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 30 min.
Shakespeare’s enchanting tale is set to some of Benjamin Britten’s most atmospheric music, with a libretto taken entirely from the text of the play. Countertenor Jochen Kowalski is Oberon, King of the Fairies, and Sylvia McNair sings his queen, Tytania. The ensemble cast also includes Nick Stahl as Puck, Nancy Gustafson as Helena, Jane Bunnell as H...
Composer: Ambroise Thomas
Librettist: Jules Barbier and Michel Carré,
Pelletier; Stevens, Benzell, Melton, Pinza,Metropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 18 min.
In this performance, the sensational Risë Stevens sings one of her signature roles, the shy but loving Mignon. It's a true operatic rarity, not heard at the Met since Stevens last did it in 1949, and it overflows with astonishing musical variety. The opera has at least two roles dear to the hearts of great singing actors: Mignon, and old Lothario, ...
Composer: Arnold Schoenberg
Librettist: Arnold Schoenberg
Levine; Langridge, TomlinsonMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 40 min.
From "James Levine: Celebrating 40 Years at the Met" CD box set.
Schoenberg’s only full-length opera, based on the Biblical story of the exodus, was left incomplete at the time of his death. It is stunningly brought to life here in its Met premiere run, conducted by James Levine, who brings out all of the score’s emotional intensity. John Tomlins...
Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Librettist: Temistocle Solera, based on the play Nabuchodonosor by Auguste Anicet-Bourgeois and Francis Cornu
Schippers; MacNeil, Rysanek, SiepiMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 1 hrs. 51 min.
This is the opera that made Verdi famous overnight, performed here with the all-star cast that introduced the work to the Met shortly before this broadcast. Thomas Schippers' superb conducting galvanized the Met orchestra and chorus, to say nothing of the magnificent soloists, headed by Cornell MacNeil as the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, who los...
Composer: Vincenzo Bellini
Librettist: Felice Romani
Maag; Verrett, Cossutta, Obraztsova, PlishkaMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 34 min.
Norma (Shirley Verrett) is the high priestess of the Druids and daughter of their leader Oroveso (Paul Plishka). But she is also in love with Pollione (Carlo Cossuta), proconsul of their Roman oppressors, and secretly has had two children with him. Matters get even more complicated when another priestess, Adalgisa (Elena Obraztsova), innocently con...
Cillario; Caballé, Cossotto, Cossutta, TozziMetropolitan Opera Orchestra and Chorus
Approximate running time: 2 hrs. 22 min.
Montserrat Caballé is one of the few sopranos who have triumphed at the Met in the Herculean role of Norma. She was acclaimed for the astonishing beauty of her voice, her unbelievable breath control, and the ability to spin out shimmering soft tones that sent the audience into a frenzy. When she brought those formidable gifts to Bellini’s magical s...
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