Mеt Opera LIVE in HD Season 2014-15: Great Expectations

It’s time for a new season of HD broadcasts!!!! YEAAAHHHH!!! Recently Met has presented the schedule for the next year! And I can’t be happier about that!!! (I know you feel the same:)).

Photo by Metropolitan Opera

Season 2014-15 is full of surprises, interesting casts, beautiful operas (and not only operas!)! One of them is Maestro Levine who is gonna conduct four operas in a new season! I really expect to get new emotions and expand my musical horizon.

I’ve written the similar post before about the season 2013-14 and decided to do it again (Why not?). I’ve ranked all the HD broadcasts according to my scale of anticipation! Here it goes!

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10.  Adams’s «The Death of Klinghoffer»
This opera belongs to American composer John Adams. And it’s his third opera Met is going to stage in the last seven years (earlier we watched «Nixon in China», «Doctor Atomic»). The plot is about hijacking of the cruise ship by terrorists.  To be honest I’m not fond of operas of modern composers, so this one seems the least appealing to me of all HD list. And its summary doesn’t arouse my interest at all. I guess I’m a conservative kind! Just not my cup of tea.

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09. Wagner’s «Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg»
Wagner returns! I know that many opera lovers are disappointed that there won’t be any Wagner’s opera in season 2013-14. I can’t call myself a Wagner fan (I heard one opera - Lohergrin). Every year I plan to watch the Ring cycle but…suddenly I find other operas that I want to hear more. So…yeah…I’m now too lazy to check it out properly. That’s why this opera is on the 9th place here cause I’ve made a promise to myself that I won’t set about other Wagner’s works until I watch the Cycle.

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08. Bizet’s «Carmen»
One of my favourite Met productions!!! But in this broadcast we’ll see another cast: Anita Rachvelishvili, Aleksandr Antonenko, Ildar Abdrazakov. New cast is as great as the previous one (Garanca and Alagna). I’m definitely gonna watch this! It’s interesting how these singers will play their parts.

Anita is a very charismatic Carmen! I like her timbre, it’s very rich. I’m sure she’ll bring a lot of southern temper to her Carmen (her Carmen arias are very passionate!). Ildar is an awesome Escamillo! I heard him singing «Votre toast». It sounded so fresh! I mean this area is performed so often that you kinda get used to one particular way of performing it. It’s hard for a singer to bring sth new to it, it’s sort of a «pop song» in the opera world. Ildar managed to do it so I’m really looking forward to see him too!

Unfortunately, there won’t be HD broadcast of «Carmen» with other amazing artists – Jonas Kaufmann and Elina Garanca. I was waiting to see them together in «Werther» in 2014 but Elina cancelled her performance due to pregnancy. I hope Met will make a video of some arias from their dress rehearsal! Fingers crossed!:)

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07. Offenbach's «Les Contes d'Hoffmann»
I’ve seen this production with Joseph Calleja and Anna Netrebko. I have very controversial feelings about it! It has some good scenes but in a whole it isn’t so captivating as it could be. Anyway, the main reason why I want to see it again is Hibla Gerzmava. She is a wonderful singer! I’ve been at her concerts twice and it was great! And Hibla is going to play all three heroines! That’s very tricky and exciting!!! I’m sure she’ll make it with a success! At least I wish her that!  Thomas Hampson sings the Four Villains which will also be fun to watch, he is a very good actor.
Only because of these performers I give this opera the 7th place in my list.

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06. Tchaikovsky’s «Iolanta» / Bartok's «Duke Bluebeard's Castle»
Iolanta is a fairy and bright opera. Tchaikovsky’s last work has finally come to Met. I’m very glad that people all over the world will get an opportunity to hear this music. It’s staged very seldom even in Russia. I’m lucky cause in my local opera theatre we can see it. It’s rather short (like one and a half hour), so it’ll be combined with a Hungarian one-act opera. According to the description at the Met’s official website it’s « an erotic psychological thriller». At this moment I don’t know if I wanna watch it or not. So Iolanta is my must-see definitely! The cast is my favourite singers (Netrebko, Beczala), I can’t miss it!))).

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05. Lehar’s «The Merry Widow»
I’m not an operetta person. I watched the only operetta «Die Fledermaus» when I was 6. I did it cause I loved the eponymous film:). I was not impressed: everybody danced, talked, a lot of feathers etc. So this year I’ve decided to give it a try as Renee is going to be a leading singer in «The Merry Widow» (I admire and adore her!!!). The Broadway team of designers are working on this production so I guess this is going to be hilarious, bright and sparkling! I’m optimistic about that. This is a sort of challenge for me!))).

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04. Rossini’s «La Donna del Lago»
And again in a new season we have a Rossini-DiDonato-Florez combination! And that’s a great joy! I haven’t seen this opera before, even though this production was staged at ROH (Royal Opera House). Rossini is always fun, love, humour and I can’t wait to see it with such an amazing cast! So this is my number 4 for sure!!!

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03. Verdi’s «Macbeth»
The «bronze» production is «Macbeth». As I’m a big fan of Anna Netrebko, I wanna be a witness of her debut in this role. Lady Macbeth is a very manipulating person and is one of few evil roles for soprano. I guess Netrebko must blow everybody away with her performance! When did she get a chance to sing sth like that?! I think she’ll do her best and we’ll be full of emotions and admiration! This production was staged in 2008 with Lucic and Gulegina. New cast includes Zeljko Lucic again, Joseph Calleja and Rene Pape who will make a perfect quartet with Anna. So I expect a lot of drama and suspense from all of them!!!

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02. Mascagni’s «Cavalleria Rusticana» / Leoncavallo's «Pagliacci»
«Opera’s most enduring tragic double bill returns» - says the Met’s website. This is so true and again for me it’ll be a new opera discovery (like almost everything that we’ll have next season!). The leading singer in these productions is Marcelo Alvarez who is gonna be Turiddu and Canio at one night! I put it on the 2d place in my list cause I haven’t heard them but have always dreamed to hear! Verismo composers move me every time, this style is the fanciest and the most truthful! (thumbs up for verismo!))). Sir David McVicar is a director, I love his previous works for Met («Giulio Cesare», «Maria Stuarda», «Il Trovatore»). I think he has a good taste and a very interesting attitude which at the same time doesn’t contradict with libretto or music. Can’t wait to see his new ideas on stage, especially after watching his interview about it where Sir David McVicar says that he wants to make «Pagliacci» a little bit funnier than directors usually do! I get it as a «dramedy» which is a very smart choice and very risky!

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01. Mozart’s «Le Nozze di Figaro»
The first «gold» place goes to……«The marriage of Figaro»!!! I’ve said it a lot before but Met literally reads my mind! Last year I was thinking: «It’s been ages since I saw this opera the last time!». But actually I could’t find the right production not because there was nothing good out there, mostly the reason was the lack of English/Russian subtitles! Disaster!!! Thank God, we have Met!

First of all, the cast: Ildar Abdrazakov (that’s already 50% of success!), Peter Mattei, Marina Poplavskaya, Isabel Leonard! Enough words for you to be happy? For me, definitely yes! But there is something more…..and it’s Richard Eyre! An awesome director whom I love for his staging of «Carmen» (2010) and «Werther» (2014) (Photos look promising! I’ll be at HD broadcast!). He will work with the same designing team, so many good coincidences happen once in a lifetime! For me it’s a number one production for sure!!!

I suppose this new season will be special as I’m gonna watch almost every production!). I hope you are not too tired of my enthusiasm:). Leave in the comments what you are waiting for the most!

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