The 2013-14 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with a live broadcast of Donizetti’s comic romance L’Elisir d’Amore Saturday, January 25 from noon-4 on KLRE Classical 90.5.
Soprano Anna Netrebko reprises her portrayal of the irresistible heroine Adina, and tenor Ramón Vargas sings the role of Nemorino, the peasant who loves her, in a cast that also includes baritone Nicola Alaimo as Sergeant Belcore and bass-baritone Erwin Schrott as Doctor Dulcamara. Maurizio Benini returns to conduct the bel canto favorite. L’Elisir d’Amore will be heard live over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network at 1:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, January 25.
This season, Anna Netrebko became the first soprano in Met history to star in three consecutive opening night performances when she made her house role debut as Tatiana in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin. She sang her first Adina at the Met on opening night of the 2012-13 season and starred in the company premiere of Donizetti’s Anna Bolena to open the 2011-12 season. Netrebko made her Met debut in 2002 as Natasha in the Met premiere of Prokofiev’s War and Peace. Her 14 roles with the company have also included the title character in Massenet’s Manon, Juliette in Gounod's Roméo et Juliette, Antonia in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann, the title role in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Norina in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, and Elvira in Bellini’s I Puritani.
Ramón Vargas has sung more than 200 Met performances in a repertory of 19 roles. He sang his first Nemorino with the company in 1998 and reprised the role in 2006. He made his Met debut as another Donizetti hero, Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, in 1992. In recent seasons, his leading roles with the company have included the title role in Verdi’s Don Carlo, Don Ottavio in the new production premiere of Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Rodolfo in Puccini's La Bohème, Gabriele Adorno in Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra, the title role in Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust, and Foresto in the Met premiere of Verdi’s Attila.
Nicola Alaimo sang the title role in two performances of Robert Carsen’s new production of Verdi's Falstaff at the Met this season. He made his company debut in 2011 as Paolo in Simon Boccanegra. His most recent performances as Belcore were at the Vienna State Opera during the 2011-12 season.
Erwin Schrott sang Dulcamara at the Met for the first time last season. He has also appeared with the company as both the title character and Leporello in Don Giovanni, Colline in La Bohème, Escamillo in Bizet’s Carmen, and the title role in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro.
Maurizio Benini’s more than 150 Met performances have included the new production premieres of L’Elisir d’Amore, Don Pasquale, and Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and the company premieres of Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda and Rossini’s Le Comte Ory. He has also led Met performances of Verdi’s Rigoletto, La Traviata, and Luisa Miller, Rossini’s La Cenerentola, Gounod’s Faust, and Bellini’s Norma.
The intermission will include backstage interviews with the stars and the first in a series of features to acquaint the audience with Borodin’s opera, Prince Igor, which returns to the Met stage on February 6 after an absence of almost 100 years, and will have its network broadcast premiere on Saturday, March 1. The first feature will introduce the opera and tell the story of how the Met established a performing version.