The Met’s new production of Un Ballo in Maschera, Verdi’s classic drama of political intrigue and thwarted romance, staged by acclaimed opera director David Alden and led by Met Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi, airs on Great Performances at the Met Sunday, May 5 at 12 noon on PBS (check local listings). In New York, THIRTEEN will premiere the opera on Thursday, May 2 at 9 p.m., with an encore showing Sunday, May 5 at 12:30 p.m.
Some of the Met’s leading Verdi stars take on the central roles in the opera’s love triangle: Marcelo Álvarez as the ill-fated King Gustavo III; Dmitri Hvorostovsky as his best friend and eventual rival, Count Anckarström; and Sondra Radvanovsky as Amelia, Anckarström’s wife and the object of the king’s secret passion. Kathleen Kim sings the coloratura role of Oscar, Gustavo’s page, and Stephanie Blythe is Mme. Ulrica Arvidsson, a fortune-teller with ominous news for the king.
Soprano Deborah Voigt hosts the transmission and conducts backstage interviews with the stars.
When the production debuted at the Met in November, the Associated Press hailed it as “An intriguing, fresh look at one of the essential works of the repertory,” while the Huffington Post sang the praises of “(a)n excellent cast who bring all the emotion, tenderness, and tension to a score that is both exciting and haunting.”
Un Ballo in Maschera was originally seen live in movie theaters on December 8 as part of the groundbreaking The Met: Live in HD series, which transmits live performances to more than 1900 movie theaters and performing arts centers in 64 countries around the world.
Great Performances at the Metis a presentation of THIRTEEN for WNET, one of America’s most prolific and respected public media providers. Throughout its 40 year history on public television, Great Performances has provided viewers across the country with an unparalleled showcase of the best in all genres of the performing arts, serving as America’s most prestigious and enduring broadcaster of cultural programming. Now in its fifth decade, the series has been the home to the greatest artists in the areas of drama, dance, musical theater, classical and popular music, providing many with their very first television exposure.
Corporate support for Great Performances at the Metis provided by Toll Brothers, America’s luxury home builder®. Additional funding is provided by the National Endowment for the Arts. This Great Performances presentation is funded by the Irene Diamond Fund, the Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, The Agnes Varis Trust, and public television viewers.
For the Met, Matthew Diamond directs the telecast. Jay David Saks is Music Producer, Mia Bongiovanni and Elena Park are Supervising Producers, and Louisa Briccetti and Victoria Warivonchik are Producers. Peter Gelb is Executive Producer. For Great Performances, Bill O’Donnell is Series Producer; David Horn is Executive Producer.