The Met Brings Opera into the Classroom

Bring full-scale Metropolitan Opera productions into your classroom! The free Live in HD school program from the Met is now available in some school districts around the country, and online educational guides put the icing on the cake.  Teaching guides for each Metropolitan opera production include classroom activities, musical highlights, story synopses, accompanying audio clips, post-opera discussion and activities, and student resources—all practical tools to help students prepare for and understand the operas, and to engage fully in their shared opera experience. What an intelligent way for the Met to build future audiences for opera, and we applaud their wonderful program of making opera more widely accessible throughout the country.  Let’s hope this free school program will continue to expand to all schools. Please let the Met know how you feel, and to encourage expansion of this excellent program. Bravo! Encore!

Note to teachers: In case the Metropolitan Opera program is not currently available in your school district, consider taking your class during the coming school year to one of the Live in HD performances in local movie theaters near you. What a treat it is to view these performances, “up close and personal” on the big screen, with all the excitement and anticipation of being at the Met, in front row orchestra seats!

Educational Guides are available for these operas:

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Armida

This mythical story of a sorceress who enthralls men in her island prison has inspired operatic settings by a multitude of composers. Renée Fleming stars in the title role of Rossini’s version, opposite no fewer than six tenors. Tony Award winner Mary Zimmerman returns to direct this new production of a work she describes as “a buried treasure, a box of jewels.”  The fanciful and magical tale, Zimmerman says, “has an epic, enchanted quality and a tremendous visual element.”


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Doctor Atomic

Gerald Finley stars as J. Robert Oppenheimer in John Adams’s contemporary masterpiece exploring a momentous episode of modern history: the creation of the atomic bomb.  Directed by Penny Woolcook.


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La Bohème

A magnificent cast comes together for Franco Zeffirelli’s iconic production of the Puccini favorite. The exciting young conductor Nicola Luisotti presides over a glorious vocal ensemble led by the mesmerizing Angela Gheorghiu, who sings Mimì at the Met for the first time in twelve years, opposite golden-toned tenor Ramón Vargas as her lover, Rodolfo.


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Carmen

One of the most popular operas of all time, Carmen "is about sex, violence, and racism—and its corollary: freedom," says Olivier Award-winning director Richard Eyre about his new production of Bizet’s drama. "It is one of the inalienably great works of art. It’s sexy, in every sense. And I think it should be shocking." El?na Garan?a sings the seductive gypsy of the title for the first time at the Met, opposite Roberto Alagna as the obsessed Don José.


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La Cenerentola

El?na Garan?a stars in Rossini’s bel canto Cinderella story, with Lawrence Brownlee as her Prince Charming. Veteran baritone Alessandro Corbelli demonstrates his impeccable comic timing to match the gravitas of Met favorite John Relyea.


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Les Contes d’Hoffmann

Tony Award winner Bartlett Sher (South Pacific) directs this new production, returning after the triumph of his Met Barber of Seville. Offenbach’s fictionalized take on the life and loves of the German Romantic writer E.T.A. Hoffmann is a fascinating psychological journey. Met Music Director James Levine conducts Joseph Calleja in the tour-de-force title role. Anna Netrebko is the tragic Antonia and Alan Held sings the demonic four villains.


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La Fille du Régiment

Experience the “exceedingly yummy operatic cake” that was called “the operatic show of the season” by The Times of London when it opened at Covent Garden this past winter. Audiences were dazzled by Natalie Dessay’s fearless coloratura and impeccable comic timing and by Juan Diego Flórez’s remarkable musicality—complete with the famous high Cs.


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Hansel and Gretel

Haunting, charming, and a little wicked, the Met’s production returns as the season’s special holiday presentation for families. Miah Persson and Angelika Kirchschlager are the lost siblings. Philip Langridge reprises his outlandish portrayal of the Witch in Humperdinck’s take on the Brothers Grimm fairy tale. Sung in English and conducted by Fabio Luisi.

This production was originally created for Welsh National Opera and Lyric Opera of Chicago.


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Lucia di Lammermoor

Anna Netrebko sings the title role of Donizetti’s fragile heroine for the first time at the Met, with tenor Rolando Vilazón as her lover in Mary Zimmerman’s hit production.


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Macbeth

Explore this terrorizing classic featuring Željko Lucic and Maria Guleghina as Macbeth and Lady Macbeth in the new production premiere based on Shakespeare’s original play.


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Madama Butterfly

The riveting singing actress Cristina Gallardo-Domâs returns to the title role of Anthony Minghella’s stunning production, a new classic of the Met repertory.


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Manon Lescaut

Finnish phenomenon Karita Mattila adds another landmark role to her Met repertory, the free-spirited beauty Manon Lescaut. The story of the magnetic attraction between two young lovers is the perfect vehicle for the soprano’s exhilarating charisma, especially when matched by the ardent tenor of Marcello Giordani.


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Peter Grimes

Peter Grimes is under investigation for unthinkable transgressions, yet Benjamin Britten’s probing exploration of the nature of guilt and judgment implicates an entire fishing village. Director John Doyle, a Tony Award® winner for his interpretation of Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd, makes his Met debut answering the challenges of this modern masterpiece.


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Roméo et Juliette

The Metropolitan Opera pairs two of the world’s leading singers, Anna Netrebko and Roberto Alagna, to bring Shakespeare’s tale of star-crossed lovers to thrilling and heartbreaking life.


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La Rondine

Opera’s charismatic real-life duo, Angela Gheorghiu and Roberto Alagna, provides the star power to deliver this ravishing romance from the world’s most popular opera composer. Nicolas Joël directs the new production of this gorgeously melodic look at love.


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Tosca

Tosca tells the story of three people—a famous opera singer, a free-thinking painter, and a sadistic chief of police—caught in a net of love and politics. Soprano Karita Mattila, recently seen in last season’s Live in HD presentation of Salome, sings the title role for the first time outside her native Finland. Luc Bondy, acclaimed for his imaginative theater and opera productions, directs. The cast also includes Marcelo Álvarez as Cavaradossi and George Gagnidze as Scarpia. Joseph Colaneri conducts.


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Turandot

Director Franco Zeffirelli’s breathtaking production of Puccini’s last opera is a favorite of the Met repertoire. Maria Guleghina plays the ruthless Chinese princess of the title, whose hatred of men is so strong that she has all suitors who can’t solve her riddles beheaded. Marcello Giordani sings Calàf, the unknown prince who eventually wins her love and whose solos include the famous “Nessun dorma.”

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