Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts Begin December 11

Classic Arts News   Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts Begin December 11
The 74th season of live radio broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera starts on December 11 with a performance of Verdi's I vespri siciliani at 1:30 p.m. EST.

Saturday afternoon performances at the Met, with the beloved Opera Quiz and other features at intermission, are broadcast on more than 360 stations in the United States and in 40 countries throughout the world.

Tomorrow marks the debut of Margaret Juntwait as the host of the broadcasts. Juntwait, a classical music host at New York's WNYC radio, is the program's third host. She succeeds Peter Allen, who retired in May after three decades. Milton Cross was the announcer from 1931, when the broadcasts began, until his sudden death in 1975.

The 2004-05 broadcast season includes 20 live broadcasts and two archival performances: a 1959 production of Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann, which is broadcast on January 15, and a 1967 recording of Verdi's Aida, January 22. Among the operas on the live broadcast schedule are Handel's Rodelinda, which makes its Met debut this season, and Janšcek's Kštya Kabanovš as well as such perennial favorites as Verdi's Otello, Puccini's Turandot, and Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier.

ChevronTexaco, the sponsor of the broadcasts for 63 years, ended its support last season. The Annenberg Foundation and the Vincent A. Stabile Foundation have donated a total of $7 million to finance the 2004-05 season of broadcasts, but the Met continues to seek donors to finance the series.

Below is the entire 2004-05 broadcast schedule:

December 11 - I Vespri Siciliani, 1:30 p.m. EST
December 18 - Tannhäuser, 1:00 p.m.
December 25 - Kát'a Kabanová, 1:30 p.m.
January 1 - Rodelinda, 1:00 p.m.
January 8 - Otello, 1:30 p.m.
January 15 - Les Contes d'Hoffmann (Originally broadcast on February 7, 1959), 1:30 p.m.
January 22 - Aida (Originally broadcast on February 25, 1967), 1:30 p.m.
January 29 - Turandot, 1:00 p.m.
February 5 - Pelléas et Mélisande, 1:30 p.m.
February 12 - Le Nozze di Figaro, 1:30 p.m.
February 19 - La Bohème, 1:30 p.m.
February 26 - Nabucco, 1:30 p.m.
March 5 - Samson et Dalila, 1:30 p.m.
March 12 - Il Barbiere di Siviglia, 1:30 p.m.
March 19 - Don Carlo, 1:00 p.m.
March 26 - Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci, 1:30 p.m.
April 2 - Der Rosenkavalier, 12:30 p.m.
April 9 - Tosca, 1:30 p.m.
April 16 - Die Zauberflöte, 1:30 p.m.
April 23 - Die Walküre, 12:30 p.m.
April 30 - Faust, 1:30 p.m.
May 7 - La Clemenza di Tito, 1:30 p.m.

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