On Saturday, May 9, yet another Metropolitan Opera Season ended and I happened to be there for both shows that day. It was the day after my birthday and splurging a little bit, my fiancee bought orchestra tickets for the matinee of Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, which I have been jumping up and down about since they announced the season last year. Later that evening, we watched Verdi’s Un ballo in maschera.
My season tickets this year included: Le nozze di Figaro, Der Meistersinger, Les contes d’Hoffmann, La donna del largo, Ernani, Don Carlo, Callavaria Rusticana/Pagliacci, The Rake’s Progress, and Un ballo in maschera— it was quite a season. Here is an article by Zachary Woofle, who went to every show offered at the Met and his analysis. Every show had its’ highlights of course, but my favorites all around would have to be Meistersinger, Pagliacci, Rake’s Progress. Meistersinger is a comic Wagner opera. The music is so incredibly delightful, four hours go by so quickly–I actually left wanting more. Pagliacci, as I explained in a previous post, is the perfect opera. It includes high stakes for all of the characters, beautiful music, and one of the best opera endings, next to Il Trovatore. Rake’s Progress is just special. It’s rarely done due to its’ tough musicality and just general staging. Paul Appleby, Stephane Blythe, and Gerald Finley were the strongest cast on stage I saw all season, hands down. Next season looks good with Lulu, a new production of Elektra, and of course, Die Entführung aus dem Serail— it’ll be even easier to see everything because it will be right in my backyard.