Great Performances at the Met Returns with New Season Beginning February 6 on PBS
Season 16 features Metropolitan Opera stars Angel Blue, Isabel Leonard, Lise Davidsen, René Pape, Matthew Polenzani, Sonya Yoncheva, Elīna Garanča, Eric Owens, Nadine Sierra, Javier Camarena, Piotr Beczała, Anna Netrebko and more.
In Season 16, Great Performances at the Met makes its return with 10 new operas premiering monthly, February-November 2022 on PBS (check local listings). After the 2020 shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, full-scale productions for live audiences return to the Met Opera house in Lincoln Center Plaza to form a starry lineup of new and timeless operas featuring beloved Met Opera singers with hosts including Angel Blue, Renée Fleming, Anthony Roth Costanzo, Audra McDonald and more. This season features Great Performances at the Met: Fire Shut Up in My Bones, premiering Friday, April 1 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings), the historic production that marked the Met’s first performance of an opera by a Black composer, Grammy winner Terence Blanchard, and Great Performances at the Met: Rigoletto, premiering Friday, June 17 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS (check local listings), directed by Tony winner Bartlett Sher.
Great Performances at the Met continues to bring the best of the Metropolitan Opera into the homes of classical music fans across the country. Season 16 of Great Performances at the Met is part of #PBSForTheArts, a multiplatform campaign that celebrates the arts in America. For more than 50 years, PBS has been the media destination for the arts, presenting dance, theater, opera, visual arts and concerts to Americans in every corner of the country.
Great Performances at the Met Season 16 Opera Schedule:
Boris Godunov – Premieres Sunday, February 6 on PBS (check local listings)
Bass René Pape, the world’s reigning Boris, reprises his portrayal of the tortured tsar caught between ambition and paranoia. Conductor Sebastian Weigle leads Mussorgsky’s Russian masterwork in its original 1869 version. Stephen Wadsworth’s production captures the hope and suffering of the Russian people as well as the tsar himself. Hosted by Angel Blue.
Eurydice – Premieres Sunday, March 6 on PBS (check local listings)
American composer Matthew Aucoin’s new adaptation of the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus reimagines the familiar tale from Eurydice’s point of view. Adapted from Sarah Ruhl’s acclaimed 2003 play, Met Opera Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts with immersive new staging by Mary Zimmerman. Soprano Erin Morley sings the title role, opposite baritone Joshua Hopkins as Orpheus and countertenor Jakub Józef Orliński as his otherworldly alter-ego. Bass-baritone Nathan Berg portrays Eurydice’s father and fellow resident of the underworld, with tenor Barry Banks as Hades himself. Hosted by Renée Fleming.
Fire Shut Up in My Bones – Premieres Friday, April 1 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)
Met Opera Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Grammy–winning jazz musician and composer Terence Blanchard’s adaptation of Charles M. Blow’s moving memoir, marking the Met’s first performance of an opera by a Black composer. Featuring a libretto by filmmaker Kasi Lemmons, the opera tells the story of a young man’s journey to overcome a life of trauma and hardship. James Robinson and Camille A. Brown co-direct this new staging with Brown also choreographing, becoming the first Black director to create a mainstage Met production. Baritone Will Liverman stars as Charles alongside soprano Angel Blue as Destiny/Loneliness/Greta with soprano Latonia Moore as Billie and Walter Russell III as Char’es-Baby. Hosted by Audra McDonald.
Cinderella – Premieres Sunday, May 8 on PBS (check local listings)
Laurent Pelly’s storybook staging of Massenet’s “Cendrillon,” features an all-new English translation with mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard as its rags-to-riches princess. Maestro Emmanuel Villaume leads the cast which includes mezzo-soprano Emily D’Angelo as Cinderella’s Prince Charming, soprano Jessica Pratt as her Fairy Godmother and mezzo-soprano Stephanie Blythe and bass-baritone Laurent Naouri as her feuding guardians. Hosted by Anthony Roth Costanzo.
Rigoletto – Premieres Friday, June 17 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings)
Verdi’s timeless tragedy is reset in 1920s Europe by Tony-winning director Bartlett Sher.
Baritone Quinn Kelsey portrays the title role at the Met for the first time, starring alongside soprano Rosa Feola as Gilda and tenor Piotr Beczała as the Duke of Mantua, with leading maestro Daniele Rustioni on the podium. Varduhi Abrahamyan plays Maddalena and Andrea Mastroni plays Sparafucile. Hosted by Isabel Leonard.
Ariadne Auf Naxos – Premieres Sunday, July 3 on PBS (check local listings)
Soprano Lise Davidsen brings one of her signature roles to the Met for the first time as the mythological Greek heroine of Strauss’ masterpiece. The cast also features mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard as the composer of the opera-within-an-opera around which the plot revolves, with soprano Brenda Rae as the spirited Zerbinetta, tenor Brandon Jovanovich as Ariadne’s lover, the god Bacchus, and Thomas Allen as the Major-Domo. Marek Janowski conducts. Hosted by Matthew Polenzani.
Don Carlos – Premieres Sunday, August 7 on PBS (check local listings)
For the first time in its history, the Met presents the original five-act French version of Verdi’s epic opera of doomed love among royalty, set against the backdrop of the Spanish Inquisition. With new staging by David McVicar, Met Opera Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin leads a starry cast including tenor Matthew Polenzani in the title role, soprano Sonya Yoncheva as Élisabeth de Valois and mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča as Eboli. Bass-baritones Eric Owens and John Relyea are Philippe II and the Grand Inquisitor. Baritone Etienne Dupuis rounds out the all-star principal cast as Rodrigue. Hosted by Ailyn Pérez.
Turandot – Premieres Sunday, September 4 on PBS (check local listings)
Opera superstar Anna Netrebko portrays the title role of the legendary cold-hearted princess. Tenor Yonghoon Lee plays Calàf, the bold prince determined to win Turandot’s love, alongside soprano Ermonela Jaho as the devoted servant Liù and bass Ferruccio Furlanetto as the blind king Timur. Marco Armiliato conducts Puccini’s stirring score. Hosted by Nadine Sierra.
Lucia Di Lammermoor – Premieres Sunday, October 2 on PBS (check local listings)
Soprano Nadine Sierra returns to the stage in one of the most formidable and storied roles, the haunted heroine Lucia di Lammermoor, in a production with new staging by Australian theater and film director Simon Stone, conducted by Riccardo Frizza. Tenor Javier Camarena portrays Lucia’s beloved, Edgardo, with baritone Artur Ruciński as her overbearing brother Enrico and bass Matthew Rose as her tutor Raimondo. Hosted by Deborah Voigt.
Hamlet – Premieres Sunday, November 6 on PBS (check local listings)
This contemporary opera directed by Neil Armfield and composed by Brett Dean first premiered at the Glyndebourne Festival to critical acclaim with many of the original cast members returning to reprise their roles, including tenor Allan Clayton in the title role, soprano Brenda Rae as Ophelia, mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly as Gertrude, baritone Rod Gilfry as Claudius and bass John Tomlinson as the ghost of Hamlet’s father. Nicholas Carter makes his Met debut as conductor. Hosted by Christine Goerke.
Great Performances at the Met is produced by the Metropolitan Opera in association with PBS and The WNET Group, bringing the best of the Metropolitan Opera into the homes of opera fans across the country. For the Met: 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.
Corporate support for Great Performances at the Met is provided by Toll Brothers. For Great Performances, funding is provided by The Joseph and Robert Cornell Memorial Foundation, the Anna-Maria and Stephen Kellen Arts Fund, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, Ellen and James S. Marcus, and Jody and John Arnhold.
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