Les Contes d'Hoffmann

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

This week's broadcast from The Metropolitan Opera features Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann, in a bold new production directed by the Broadway veteran Bartlett Sher.

The opera is notable for marking the return of conductor James Levine to the Met after an absence of more than two months to recover from spine surgery. It's also significant for being a thoroughly modern, Fellini-esque version of the 19th Century tale, a psychodrama about three failed love affairs. The production includes several major singers including Anna Netrebko in the role of Antonia, and Joseph Calleja, for the first time singing the demanding title role. Margaret Juntwait hosts today's broadcast, wth commentary from Ira Siff.

Program Details:

Music by Jacques Offenbach
Text (in French) by Jules Barbier and Michel Carré, based on stories by E.T.A. Hoffmann
Conductor: Jean Morel

Cast:

Conductor: James Levine
Olympia: Kathleen Kim
Antonia: Anna Netrebko
Giulietta: Ekaterina Gubanova
Nicklausse/The Muse: Kate Lindsey
Hoffmann: Joseph Calleja
Four Villains: Alan Held

WNYC Culture: Psychodrama at the Opera: Behind the Scenes with the Met's Tales of Hoffmann

View a Slide Show of Les Contes d'Hoffmann in WQXR's Arts File

The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Comments [3]

Patricia from Sarasota Florida

Loved the occasion. MARVELOUS VOICES! Wonderful production.

Not so happy with camera work. Just because you CAN do closeups doesn't mean you always should. Much of the inventive staging was lost while we saw head shots of, the singers. Digital camera work is not the same as analog - Cameras are better - so you don't need to be so close up to see faces. And WAY too much cutting from one camera to another.

Dec. 20 2009 11:14 AM
Jorge from Kings Park NY

Bravo, Bravo Olympia , Bravo

Dec. 19 2009 04:43 PM
Jelsey from Lebanon, NJ

I'm sad that the BIG SNOW will keep me from attending this performance Live From The Met in HD. But I'll be streaming Les Contes d'Hoffman on my computer.

Happily, the performance will soon be available on Met Player, although without the size and sound of the Cinemax.

Dec. 19 2009 12:22 PM

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