The Metropolitan Opera has put a hold on live performances until September 2021, but New York's great opera house is continuing to stream free recordings of full productions from its archives every night this month. From December 7 through December 13, the company focuses exclusively on operas performed in English, including Gershwin's American folk tragedy Porgy and Bess as well as works by Britten, Weill, John Adams, John Corigliano and Thomas Adès. All but two were originally recorded in high definition to be shared in movie theaters in the company's Live in HD series. (Click here to see the Met's schedule for December 14 through December 20.)
The productions become available each night on the Met's website at 7:30pm EST (12:30am GMT) and stay there until 6:30pm EST the next day. They can also been watched on various devices through the Met Opera on Demand app. A full schedule for Week 39 of the Met's streaming series is below.
Doctor Atomic | Photograph: Ken Howard
On Friday, the Met streams George and Ira Gershwin and DuBose Heyward's 1935 jazz masterpiece Porgy and Bess, as captured earlier this year in a 2020 production with Eric Owens and Angel Blue in the title roles. The week also includes two recent works composed and conducted by the young British composer Thomas Adès—adaptations of Shakespeare's The Tempest and Luis Buñuel's absurdist and creepy The Exterminating Angel—as well as John Adams and Peter Sellars's 2005 Doctor Atomic, which looks at the development of the nuclear bomb, and Benjamin Britten and Montagu Slater’s Peter Grimes, the dark tale of a fisherman believed to be guilty of a terrible crime. On the weekend, the Met dives deeper into its archives to present two vintage productions: Weill’s The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny and John Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles, both starring the great Teresa Stratas. To help you decided among these offerings, the Met provides both a thumbnail guide to the lineup and a curated selection of more detailed articles and podcasts.
Separate from the nightly operas, the Met also streams live pay-per-view virtual concerts. The latest, featuring bass-baritone Bryn Terfel and guests in a holiday program at the Brecon Cathedral in Wales, will be broadcast live at 1pm EST on Saturday, December 12, and will remain available for two weeks afterward.
This week's Metropolitan Opera nightly streaming schedule:
Monday, December 7: Thomas Adès’s The Tempest
Starring Audrey Luna, Isabel Leonard, Iestyn Davies, Alek Shrader, Alan Oke, William Burden, Toby Spence and Simon Keenlyside. Conducted by Thomas Adès. Transmitted live on November 10, 2012.
Tuesday, December 8: John Adams’s Doctor Atomic
Starring Sasha Cooke, Thomas Glenn, Gerald Finley and Richard Paul Fink. Conducted by Alan Gilbert. Transmitted live on November 8, 2008.
Wednesday, December 9: Britten’s Peter Grimes
Starring Anthony Dean Griffey, Patricia Racette and Anthony Michaels-Moore. Conducted by Sir Donald Runnicles. Transmitted live on March 15, 2008.
Thursday, December 10: Thomas Adès’s The Exterminating Angel
Starring Audrey Luna, Amanda Echalaz, Sally Matthews, Sophie Bevan, Alice Coote, Christine Rice, Iestyn Davies, Joseph Kaiser, Frédéric Antoun, David Portillo, David Adam Moore, Rod Gilfry, Kevin Burdette, Christian Van Horn and John Tomlinson. Conducted by Thomas Adès. Transmitted live on November 18, 2017.
Friday, December 11: Gershwin's Porgy and Bess
Starring Angel Blue, Golda Schultz, Latonia Moore, Denyce Graves, Frederick Ballentine, Eric Owens, Alfred Walker and Donovan Singletary. Conducted by David Robertson. Transmitted live on February 1, 2020.
Saturday, December 12: Weill’s The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny
Starring Teresa Stratas, Astrid Varnay, Richard Cassilly and Cornell MacNeil. Conducted by James Levine. From November 27, 1979.
Sunday, December 13: John Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles
Starring Teresa Stratas, Håkan Hagegård, Gino Quilico, Graham Clark, Marilyn Horne and Renée Fleming. Conducted by James Levine. From January 10, 1992.
Peter Grimes | Photograph: Ken Howard
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