The Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD Series – Wagner’s THE FLYING DUTCHMAN, March 14 at 9:55 am

Richard Wagner’s first great operatic masterpiece, Der Fliegende Holländer, is the Met’s HD offering for March. Director François Girard has attempted to resolve some of the work’s more anachronistic aspects by telling the story from the point of view of its heroine, Senta. Be that as it may, the story of a young woman who is so obsessed with a mysterious old portrait that she eventually destroys herself in order to become a part of its haunted world will probably remain a bit of a stretch for many modern opera goers. Spectacular, violently stormy video projections – especially during the (long!) overture – contribute some modernizing magic as well, but in the end this particular Met production gives us a sadly static, darkly depressing reading of some of Wagner’s most glorious music.

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Saturday’s Live in HD Broadcast to Local Cinemas: Akhnaten by Phillip Glass

This rarely performed modern masterpiece is another spectacular must-see opera from the Met’s 2019-20 live in HD season. Staring one of the world’s greatest living countertenors, Anthony Roth Costanzo, in the title role and featuring J’Nai Bridges as his Queen, Nefertiti, and Dísella Lárusdóttir as his mother, Queen Tye, it will literally knock your socks off. This is the last opera in Glass’ historic “Portrait Trilogy” (the others were about Einstein and Gandhi) and is a mystical examination of events in the life of Pharaoh Amenhotep IV who took the first known steps towards monotheism two centuries before Moses, and then re-named himself Akhnaten after his one God – Aten – a higher manifestation of the Sun God Ra.

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This Saturday the Met’s Live in HD Series Brings Puccini’s Stunning Madama Butterfly to the Big Screen

You won’t want to miss seeing this breathtakingly beautiful production designed by Anthony Minghella and featuring Bunraku traditional Japanese puppetry along with the live singers. Puccini’s Madama Butterfly is one of the world’s best-loved and most-performed operas, not only because of its astonishingly lyrical beauty, but also because of its wholly believable story – a heartrending tragedy brought on by imperialism and the clash of different cultures.

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The Met In HD Performs Massenet’s Ever Popular Manon Saturday, October 26th

For its second live in HD transmission of the 2019-20 season, the Met has chosen Jules Massenet’s wonderfully melodic, Manon – a deliciously French take on the tragic story of Manon Lescaut (also made into a deliciously Italian opera by Puccini – but that’s another story!). A teenage girl from the country – far too pretty for her own good – is sent alone to the outskirts of Paris to be met by her cousin and escorted to a convent. Her non-too vigilant, and non-too-upstanding, cousin allows her to catch a glimpse of the decidedly un-convent-like life of actresses who are enjoying the company of wealthy “patrons”–and the rest, as we say, is history.

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