The series of six broadcasts is the most extensive presentation of Metropolitan Opera productions ever offered by PBS in a single season. The performances aired by the network are the same six Saturday matinees to be simulcast into movie theaters this year in one of the Met's new initiatives aimed at broadening audiences.
The Magic Flute is being presented on PBS in the new 100-minute English-language adaptation commissioned by the Met for family audiences and premiered this past holiday season. The new libretto is by the poet J. D. McClatchy. The sets are by George Tsypin; Taymor designed the costumes and co-designed the puppets with Michael Curry; Mark Dendy is choreographer.
The cast includes Ying Huang as Pamina, Matthew Polenzani as Tamino, Nathan Gunn as Papageno, Erika Mikl‹sa as the Queen of the Night, and Ren_ Pape as Sarastro. James Levine, the Met's music director, conducts. .
Great Performances at the Met broadcasts later this year include Bartlett Sher's new staging of Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia ("The Barber of Seville"), starring Juan Diego Fl‹rez, Joyce DiDonato and Peter Mattei; Jack O'Brien's new production of Puccini's Il trittico; Bellini's I puritani, featuring Anna Netrebko; Tan Dun's The First Emperor, starring Plšcido Domingo and staged by film director Zhang Yimou; and Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin, with Ren_e Fleming and Dmitri Hvorostovsky.