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Opening Night Gala Starring Renée Fleming 

Keeping with a long-standing tradition, Renee Fleming kicks off the new season at the Met with scenes from Verdi's Traviata, Massenet's Manon, and Strauss' Capriccio. She is joined by Ramon Vargas and Thomas Hampson.

Director:

Gary Halvorson
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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Renée Fleming ... Violetta / Manon / Countess
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Marco Armiliato Marco Armiliato ... Himself - Conductor: 'Manon'
Griff Braun Griff Braun ... Dancers - La Traviata: Act II
Dwayne Croft Dwayne Croft ... Lescaut
Kathryn Day Kathryn Day ... Annina - La Traviata: Act II
Michael Devlin Michael Devlin ... Major-Domo - Capriccio: Final Scene
Sara Erde Sara Erde ... Dancers - La Traviata: Act II
Thomas Hampson Thomas Hampson ... Germont
John Hancock John Hancock ... Baron Douphol - La Travitata: Act II / De Brétigny - Manon: Act III
Theodora Hanslowe Theodora Hanslowe ... Flora - La Traviata: Act II
James Levine James Levine ... Himself - 'La Traviata' conducted by
Robert Lloyd Robert Lloyd ... Count Des Grieux
Christine McMillan Christine McMillan ... Dancers - La Traviata: Act II
Louis Otey Louis Otey ... Marquis d'Obigny - La Traviata: Act II
Paul Plishka Paul Plishka ... Doctor Grenvil - La Traviata: Act II
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Storyline

Keeping with a long-standing tradition, Renee Fleming kicks off the new season at the Met with scenes from Verdi's Traviata, Massenet's Manon, and Strauss' Capriccio. She is joined by Ramon Vargas and Thomas Hampson.

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Plot Keywords:

opera | classical | See All (2) »

Genres:

Musical

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Details

Release Date:

22 September 2008 (USA) See more »

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Soundtracks

La Traviata, Act II
Music by Giuseppe Verdi
Libretto by Francesco Maria Piave
Conducted by James Levine
Performed by Renée Fleming, Ramón Vargas, Thomas Hampson
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User Reviews

 
Not so much a concert, more a coronation...
8 September 2009 | by GyranSee all my reviews

Renée Fleming gets to appear in segments from three of her favourite operas in one evening. Well, if ever the post of Queen of England becomes vacant, she would certainly get my vote. The format is a bit like Readers' Digest condensed operas.The only thing that comes near to upstaging Queen Renée is the stage itself. Both Act II of La Traviata and Act III of Manon consist of two contrasting scenes so first we witness the effortless transformation of Violetta's country retreat into a Paris ballroom, then we see a Paris street scene transformed into the chapel of Saint-Suplice. The choice of repertoire gives ample scope to show off the Met's chorus and dancers as well as an array of guest principals.

The evening gets off to a slow start with a lacklustre performance of Zeffirelli's dated Traviata. Thomas Hampson is most to blame here as a wooden Germont. Things pick up with the Manon section. This is one of Renée Fleming's signature roles and she deliciously depicts the coquette who deserts Des Grieux only to seduce him again, years later, the night before his ordination, just because she can. I particularly liked the religious groupies discussing Des Grieux's sermon as if it were a pop concert. Ramon Vargos plays both Germont Fils and Des Grieux in these two excerpts.

After all this spectacle, the musical highlight of the evening is Renée Fleming's solo performance of the end of Strauss's Capriccio. Her rich voice is wonderfully suited to Strauss's soaring vocal line. She dispenses with the elaborate wigs of the previous two sections in favour of a more natural hairstyle and she wears a breathtaking costume by John Galliano. Long live Queen Renée.


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