Jan. 18: Eugene Onegin

Jan 16, 2014

Tchaikovsky's "Eugene Onegin" with Anna Netrebko as Tatiana and Mariusz Kwiecien as Eugene Onegin.
Credit Lee Broomfield / Metropolitan Opera

The 2013-14 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, in an archival broadcast from October 5th, 2013, which will air Saturday, January 18 from noon-4 on KLRE Classical 90.5.

Valery Gergiev conducts the performance, which features soprano Anna Netrebko as the naive heroine Tatiana, baritone Mariusz Kwiecien as the aristocratic title character, and tenor Piotr Beczala as the poet Lenski. Mezzo-soprano Oksana Volkova sings the role of Tatiana’s sister, Olga, and Alexei Tanovitski sings Prince Gremin. This cast opened the Met season with this new production last fall. Eugene Onegin will be heard over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network at 1:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, January 18.

This season, Anna Netrebko became the first soprano in Met history to star in three consecutive opening night performances. She was Adina in Donizetti’s comedy L’Elisir d’Amore last season, and opened the 2011-12 season with a celebrated company role debut as the title character in Donizetti’s Anna Bolena. This season was her first time singing Tatiana at the Met; she debuted the role to critical acclaim earlier this year at the Vienna State Opera. Netrebko made her Met debut in 2002 as Natasha in the Met premiere of Prokofiev's War and Peace, conducted by Gergiev, and this Eugene Onegin marks her first Met performances in her native Russian since that debut season. Her other roles with the company have included the title character in Massenet’s Manon, Mimì in Puccini’s La Bohème, Donna Anna in Mozart's Don Giovanni, Antonia in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Juliette in Gounod's Roméo et Juliette, the title role in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Norina in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, and Elvira in Bellini’s I Puritani. Next week, she will reprise her Adina in the January 25 broadcast of L’Elisir d’Amore.

Mariusz Kwiecien sings Onegin for the first time at the Met this year, a part he has sung to acclaim at numerous international opera houses, including the Bolshoi in Moscow; Paris Opera; Royal Opera, Covent Garden; Teatro Real in Madrid; and Kraków Opera in his native Poland. A graduate of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, he has sung more than 150 Met performances, including five roles in new production premieres: Belcore in last season’s L’Elisir d’Amore, the title character in Don Giovanni (2011), Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen (2009), Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor (2007), and Dr. Malatesta in Don Pasquale (2006). Other roles since his 1999 Met debut as Kuligin in Janáček’s Kát’a Kabanová include Marcello in La Bohème, Count Almaviva in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, and Guglielmo in Mozart’s Così fan tutte. This spring, he will add the role of Riccardo in I Puritani to his Met repertory, a performance which will be broadcast on May 3.

Piotr Beczala first sang Lenski at the Met in the 2008-09 season; he has also sung the role with San Francisco Opera and Zurich Opera. Last season, he starred as the Duke in the Met’s new staging of Verdi’s Rigoletto and made his company role debut as the title character in Gounod’s Faust. His other Met appearances have included the Chevalier des Grieux in the new production premiere of Massenet’s Manon, Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, and Rodolfo in La Bohème (all three opposite Netrebko), as well as Roméo in Roméo et Juliette. This winter, he returns to the Met to sing the Prince in a revival of Dvořák’s Rusalka, to be broadcast on February 8.

Valery Gergiev has conducted more than 100 Met performances in a varied repertory, including the company premieres of Prokofiev’s The Gambler and War and Peace; Tchaikovsky’s Mazeppa; and Shostakovich’s The Nose. He made his Met debut in 1994 leading a new production of Verdi’s Otello and also conducted new production premieres of Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades, Strauss’s Salome, and Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov. He conducted an acclaimed run of Eugene Onegin in the Met’s 2006-07 season that included a Live in HD transmission. Gergiev is the general director of St. Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre, the artistic director of St. Petersburg’s White Nights Festival, and the principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.

The broadcast intermissions will include interviews with the three stars and with Maestro Gergiev.