On stage at the Met 2017/18

The Metropolitan Opera has announced its 2017/18 season.  It’s quite heavy on warhorses.  La Bohème, Tosca and Turandot each get fifteen performances and there’s plenty more standard fare in there.  Once again, there’s nothing pre Mozart and the only nods to modernity are a revival of Elektra (six shows) and a new production of Thomas Adès’ The Exterminating Angel (eight shows).


The Exterminating Angel at the Salzburg Festival.  Photo: Monika Rittershaus

There are five new (to the Met at least) productions.  Joyce DiDonato gets to reprise the title role in the Pelly production of Massenet’s Cendrillon which she sang at Covent Garden in 2011 (DVD review of that production).  There’s a new Così fan tutte by Phelim McDermott which is apparently set on Coney Island.  Shades of early Sellars perhaps?  Perhaps the most exciting thing is Adès’ The Exterminating Angel based on the Buñuel film.  The production is by librettist Tom Cairns and the cast includes Audrey Luna, so expect stratospheric high notes and John Tomlinson.  There’s CanCon too in the shape of Frédéric Antoun.  It has already been seen in Salzburg and will play in a couple of months at Covent Garden so there are plenty of reviews about.

David McVicar is responsible for the other two new shows.  There’s a Norma which promises real live druids and oak trees and, if you pick your dates carefully, Sandra Radvanovsky and Joyce DiDonato.  Careful though, they appear together in only five of twelve shows.  Also Tosca, which seems like likely territory for the new, no longer remotely shocking McVicar.  There’s a December/January run with Kaufmann and Terfel (and Opolais) and an April/May run with Netrebko (but no Kaufmann or Terfel).

Of the revivals only a few caught my eye.  The Elektra, of course, and especially with Christine Goerke in the title role.  François Girard’s Parsifal gets a revival with Klaus-Florian Vogt in the title role and Evelyn Herlitzius and René Pape too.  Curiously, Mozart’s Magic Flute gets two runs; one full length in German and one abbreviated in English.  Both use the Julie Taymor production.  I don’t think wild horses would drag me to see Thaïs again but I have to admit the combo of Ailyn Perez and Gerald Finley is tempting.  I might also be tempted by Anita Rachvelishvili as Azucena in Il Trovatore.

And a final CanCon note, Johannes Debus conducts a nine show run of Les contes d’Hoffmann which also features Andriana Chuchman.


4 thoughts on “On stage at the Met 2017/18

  1. What an awful season. One opera after 1927. No Russian or Eastern European works. The Bieito Forza gets dropped. A “new” Tosca that, based on the sketches, looks exactly like the old Zef production. One Strauss and one Wagner but two Massenet. The only must see for me is Elektra. I “don’t get” Parsifal but I may give it another go because KFV sightings are so rare in North America and the rest of the cast looks great. I was not really taken by the Tempest and I think The Exterminating Angel an odd choice for an opera (I would love to see an opera based on The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie) but I will probably go. I have never understood all the fuss over Norma but Rad and JDD are two of my favorites. Luisa Miller looks promising but I refuse to see anything with PD–Luca Salsi sings the last performance so I may catch that. From what I have read about the Cosi it looks truly unbearable–probably a bigger piece of filth than the Rat Pack Rigoletto–I’m sure it will be a hit. BTW, another HD of Boheme–I believe this is the third (in addition there is a DVD from when the production was first done in the 80s)

      • HD lineup is on Met site. It is a truly disappointing season. I agree with your assessment and picks, except I might go to hear the divine deShong in Semiramide and hold my nose at the conducting.

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