The Metropolitan Opera Guild will debut a new series, entitled "The Met Mastersingers," Feb. 3 at New York's Town Hall. The inaugural event will feature Renée Fleming in an informal conversation and video viewing with executive producer Paul Gruber.
Included in the evening will be screenings of the top soprano's favorite filmed performances, from the Metropolitan Opera as well as previously unscreened material from other opera houses and television shows; a new video biography; and filmed anecdotes by some of Fleming's colleagues and friends, including Susan Graham, Barbara Cook, and Peter Gelb.
Filmed performances and appearances to be screened include the Marschallin's monologue from the recent Met HD transmission of Der Rosenkavalier; a scene with baritone Thomas Hampson from a highly-acclaimed performance of La Traviata given by Fleming at Covent Garden this past summer; appearances on two late-night television programs that some opera lovers and Fleming fans no doubt missed; an excerpt from a television special, shot last year in Russia, that has not yet been broadcast in the U.S.; and Fleming's unforgettable performance at President Obama's inauguration concert.
Gruber has interviewed some of the greatest classical musicians of our time in a series of Guild events over the past few seasons including, most recently, conductor James Levine, music director of the Metropolitan Opera. A contributor to ConcertoNet.com called that event at Alice Tully Hall, "a joy from start to finish." Gruber's last conversation at Town Hall was with another great soprano, the legendary Teresa Stratas, who made her first public appearance in 15 years in the Guild's "Met Legends" series.
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