The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music: This Saturday the critically acclaimed new production of Verdi’s “La Traviata” is featured in “Live from The Met in HD.” Read two reviews | December 14, 2018

FORWARD A LINK TO IT OR SHARE IT (not just “Like It IF YOU LIKE A CERTAIN BLOG POST, PLEASE”) ON FACEBOOK. Performers can use the extra exposure to draw potential audience members to an event.

CORRECTION: Earlier versions of yesterday’s post about The Madison Choral Project incorrectly stated that the Milwaukee performance is Wednesday night. The Ear apologizes for the error. The correct time is TUESDAY night, Dec. 18. For more information about time, tickets and the program, here is a link to the story: https://welltempered.wordpress.com/2018/12/13/classical-music-the-madison-choral-project-will-sing-of-young-peoples-hope-for-the-future-at-its-concerts-this-saturday-night-and-sunday-afternoon/

By Jacob Stockinger

This Saturday, Dec. 15, the fourth production of this season’s “Live From the Met” in HD series is Giuseppe Verdi’s famous and popular “La Traviata” (The Fallen Woman).

The Metropolitan Opera production, sumptuously directed by Michael Mayer, stars soprano Diana Damrau (below left in a photo by Marty Sohl for The Met) as Violetta while the acclaimed Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Florez (below right) returns to the Met stage for the first time in five years to play her lover Alfredo.

It is also noteworthy because the new music director, French-Canadian Yannick Nézet-Séguin (below, in a photo by Jan Regan), will be making his “Live in HD” debut and opening a new era after his hiring to succeed James Levine. Though relatively young, he has drawn raves for his sensitive conducting and insightful interpretations of this and other operas and orchestral works.

Reportedly, he is also very popular with the singers, the orchestra players and other staff at The Met as well as with audiences.

The hi-definition broadcast of the live performance from the Metropolitan Opera (below) in New York City starts at 11:55 a.m. and runs until 3:45 p.m. with two intermissions. (It will also air on Wisconsin Public Radio at noon.)

The encore showings are next Wednesday, Dec. 19, at 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

The opera will be sung in Italian with supertitles in English, German, Spanish and Italian.

Tickets for Saturday broadcasts are $24 for adults and $22 for seniors and children under 13. For encore showings, all tickets are $18.

The movie theaters where the opera can be seen are two Marcus Cinemas: the Point Cinema on the west side of Madison (608 833-3980) and the Palace Cinema (608 242-2100) in Sun Prairie.

Here is a link to the Marcus website for addresses and more information. You can also use them to purchase tickets:

https://www.movietickets.com/movies

Here is a link to the Metropolitan Opera’s home website where you can find the titles, dates, casts, production information and video clips of all 10 productions this season, which include operas by Bizet, Wagner, Donizetti, Saint-Saens, Puccini, Cilea and Poulenc plus a new work, “Marnie,” by Nico Muhly:

https://www.metopera.org/season/in-cinemas/

Here is a rave review of “La Traviata” by senior classical music critic Anthony Tommasini for The New York Times:

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/05/arts/music/review-metropolitan-opera-traviata-yannick-nezet-seguin.html

And here is another positive review from Vulture magazine in New York City. Below are the impressive set and big cast in a photo by Sara Krulwich for The New York Times:

https://www.vulture.com/2018/12/la-traviata-the-met-opera-review.html

Here is a link to a synopsis and cast list: https://www.metopera.org/globalassets/season/in-cinemas/hd-cast-sheets/traviata_us-global-pr.pdf?performanceNumber=15367

Here is a link to other information about the production of “La Traviata,” including photos and audiovisual clips (in the YouTube video preview at the bottom you can also hear the director, conductor and others speak and sing):

https://www.metopera.org/season/2018-19-season/la-traviata/

And here is a Wikipedia history of the broadcast series that gives you more information about how many cinemas it uses, the enormous size of the worldwide audience – now including Russia, China and Israel — and how much money it makes for The Met.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Metropolitan_Opera_Live_in_HD


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5 Comments »

  1. Can you please make links “open in new window” to avoid all the back and forth? Thank you.

    Comment by bbead — December 14, 2018 @ 8:27 am

    • ????????????????I don’t understand your request.

      Comment by fflambeau — December 15, 2018 @ 12:51 am

      • Sorry, it was meant for Mr. Stockinger and refers to checking a WordPress box that says “Open link in new window/tab” after clicking on “Insert/edit link” at the top of a story. That way the original story stays open. Convenient for readers.

        Comment by bbead — December 15, 2018 @ 5:15 am

  2. It’s nice but I would prefer showcasing live, local events and musicians. They deserve it.

    Comment by fflambeau — December 14, 2018 @ 12:25 am

    • Permit me to expand my thoughts.

      In a wonderful essay, “AMERICAN CLASSICAL MUSIC HAS DISAPPOINTED EXPECTATIONS” Joseph Horowitz writes: “Remember that symphonic conductors once stayed put—there were no airplanes to fly them from one musical capital to another. In Chicago, Frederick Stock was not an international celebrity. He was, instead, something of greater civic consequence: a local celebrity, a popular favorite who in summertime led his orchestra in outdoor concerts at which multitudes sang along.

      But over the course of the 20th century, American classical music disappointed expectations and remained a Eurocentric import. Orchestras succumbed to formula. They sacrificed local identity based in community for itinerant star power. They squandered their potential to instill a sense of place.”

      Horowitz emphasizes, and I agree, that classical music was stronger when it emanated from civic and communal bases, even from households. He sees civic orchestras and especially university orchestras as the means of keeping classical music alive and well. Spot on!

      We should be looking to strengthen local, live music and musicians; no place does that as well, he argues, as university orchestras and groups.

      Supporting the Met non live productions is nice (and yes, I’m an opera fan) but even better is supporting live, local productions and groups.

      Here’s a link to Horowitz’s essay: https://slippedisc.com/2018/12/american-classical-music-has-disappointed-expectations/

      Comment by fflambeau — December 14, 2018 @ 12:45 am


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