LSM Newswire

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Met: Live in HD Kicks Off on Saturday, October 10 at Empire Theatre

A New Production of Puccini's Tosca
- Tickets for 2009-10 Season On Sale Now

HALIFAX, Sept. 25 /CNW/ - Tickets for the fourth season of The Met: Live in HD, the Metropolitan Opera's popular, award-winning series of live transmissions in movie theaters around the world, are now on sale at select Empire Theatres locations in Atlantic Canada. The 2009-10 season, featuring nine live opera transmissions, kicks off on Saturday, October 10 at 2:00 p.m. AT with a new production of Puccini's Tosca starring Karita Mattila. The production, directed by Luc Bondy in his house debut and conducted by Met Music Director James Levine, features Marcelo alvarez and George Gagnidze in the other leading roles.

More than 900 theaters in 42 countries around the world are participating in The Met: Live in HD this season. A record number of more than 1.8 million Live in HD tickets were sold last season.

Four other new productions are featured in the series, including Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann starring Joseph Calleja in the title role, with Anna Netrebko and Alan Held; Bizet's Carmen starring Elina Garanca and Roberto Alagna; Natalie Dessay and Simon Keenlyside in Thomas's Hamlet; and Rossini's Armida starring Renˆ©e Fleming. The HD season also includes Verdi's Aida with Violeta Urmana, Dolora Zajick, and Johan Botha; Maria Guleghina and Marcello Giordani in Puccini's Turandot; Richard Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier with Fleming and Susan Graham; and Verdi's Simon Boccanegra starring Placido Domingo, singing the title role for the first time at the Met. James Levine leads four of the HD transmissions. Complete casting and details of the season's Live in HD performances follows below.

All nine high-definition productions will be shown live worldwide on Saturdays through May 1 with an additional Saturday Encore presentation for each. Tickets are available online and at participating theatre box offices. For complete details visit
The Met: Live in HD series is made possible by a generous grant from the Neubauer Family Foundation. Bloomberg L.P. is the global corporate sponsor of The Met: Live in HD. The HD broadcasts are supported by Toll Brothers, America's luxury home builder(R).

The Met: Live in HD has expanded its distribution in the 2009-10 season to include 42 countries. New countries joining the Live in HD network this season include Bulgaria, Chile, Lithuania, Malta, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, and Uruguay. The Met: Live in HD returns in the following locations: Argentina (Fundacion Beethoven), Australia (presented by Sharmill Films), Austria (presented by ClasArt), Belgium (Kinepolis), Brazil (Movie MBZ), Colombia (Cine Colombia), Costa Rica (Centro Cultural), Croatia (presented by Aero Films), the Czech Republic (presented by Aero Films), Denmark (Nordisk Film Biografer); Estonia (Forum Cinemas), Finland (Finnkino), France (presented by CielEcran), Germany (presented by ClasArt), Hungary (presented by Aero Films), Iceland (Sam Films), Ireland (presented by Opera Ireland), Japan (Shochiku), Latvia (Forum Cinemas), Luxembourg (Utopia), Mexico (Auditorio Nacional), the Netherlands (Pathˆ©, CineMec Ede, and Foroxity Film Arena), New Zealand (Rialto Distribution), Norway (Bergen Kino, Oslo Kino and Tromso Film Festival), Peru (Radio Filharmonia), Poland (Arthur Rubenstein Philharmonic and Aero Films), Romania (presented by Aero Films), Sweden (FHP Sweden), Switzerland (CielEcran), South Africa (Ster Kinekor Theatres), the United Kingdom (City Screen/Picturehouse), and several UK independent movie theaters and performing arts organizations.

The Met: Live in HD 2009-10 Season

Saturday, October 10, 2009
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore October 31 -
A new production of Puccini's Tosca by Luc Bondy in his house debut, starring Karita Mattila in her first performance of the title role outside her native Finland, and Marcelo alvarez as Cavaradossi. George Gagnidze sings the role of Scarpia. James Levine conducts.
HD host: Susan Graham

Saturday, October 24, 2009
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore November 31 -
Daniele Gatti returns for the first time in 14 years to conduct a cast of powerful voices in Verdi's Aida. Violeta Urmana sings the title role, while Dolora Zajick returns in one of her most acclaimed portrayals as the Egyptian princess Amneris. Johan Botha is Radamˆ®s and Carlo Guelfi sings Amonasro.
HD host: Renee Fleming

Saturday, November 7, 2009
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore December 5 -
Franco Zeffirelli's classic production of Puccini's Turandot features the Met role debuts of Maria Guleghina in the title role, Marcello Giordani as CalˆÝf, Samuel Ramey as Timur, and Marina Poplavskaya as Liˆ¼. Conductor Andris Nelsons makes his Met debut.

Saturday, December 19, 2009
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore January 23 -
Bartlett Sher, whose staging of Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia was a hit two seasons ago, returns to direct his second Met production: Offenbach's Les Contes d'Hoffmann, conducted by James Levine. Joseph Calleja stars as Hoffmann, with Anna Netrebko as Antonia, Ekaterina Gubanova as Giulietta, Kate Lindsey as Nicklausse, Kathleen Kim as Olympia, and Alan Held as the four villains.

Saturday, January 9, 2010
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore March 6 -
James Levine conducts a stellar cast led by Renˆ©e Fleming as the Marschallin and Susan Graham as Octavian. Eric Cutler is the Italian Singer, Kristinn Sigmundsson sings the role of Baron Ochs, and Christine Schˆ§fer is Sophie.
HD host: Placido Domingo

Saturday, January 16, 2010
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore March 13 -
The new Carmen, starring Elina Garanca, who sang the title role of La Cenerentola at the Met last spring to great acclaim, will also feature the debuts of director Richard Eyre and conductor Yannick Nˆ©zet-Sˆ©guin. Roberto Alagna is the soldier Don Josˆ©, Barbara Frittoli is Micaˆ´la, and Mariusz Kwiecien is the bullfighter Escamillo.
HD host: Renˆ©e Fleming

Saturday, February 6, 2010
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore March 20 -
Four decades into a legendary Met career, Placido Domingo makes history by singing the baritone title role of Verdi's Simon Boccanegra, conducted by James Levine. Adrianne Pieczonka, Marcello Giordani, and James Morris co-star.
HD host: Renˆ©e Fleming

Saturday, March 27, 2010
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore April 24 -
Last performed at the Met in 1897, Ambroise Thomas's Hamlet will be seen in a new production by Patrice Caurier and Moshe Leiser, conducted by Louis Langrˆ©e and starring Simon Keenlyside in the title role and Natalie Dessay as Ophˆ©lie. With Jennifer Larmore as Gertrude, Toby Spence as Laˆ´rtes and James Morris as Claudius.
HD host: Renˆ©e Fleming

Saturday, May 1, 2010
(2:00 p.m. AT / 2:30 p.m. NL)
Encore May 22 -
The season's final new production features Renˆ©e Fleming in Rossini's bel canto tour de force Armida, directed by Mary Zimmerman and conducted by Riccardo Frizza. Also starring Lawrence Brownlee, Bruce Ford, Josˆ© Manuel Zapata, Barry Banks, and Kobie van Rensburg. HD host: Deborah Voigt

The Live in HD series was recently honored with a prestigious 2008 Peabody Award for its "vividly designed, smartly annotated productions of Hansel and Gretel, Doctor Atomic, Peter Grimes and other operas. The Met used state-of-the-art digital technology to reinvent presentation of a classic art form."

The Met won a special Emmy Award in January 2009 for "advancing technology through ongoing, live, global transmission of high-definition programming to movie theaters."

About Empire Theatres Limited

Empire Theatres Limited with its corporate headquarters in Stellarton, NS and regional offices in Halifax, NS, Toronto, ON and Calgary, AB, is a 100% owned subsidiary of Empire Company Limited. Empire Theatres owns and operates 50 theatres, with 374 screens across Canada (including one IMAX Theatre in Halifax) from Newfoundland to British Columbia.
Empire Theatres is Canada's second largest and fastest growing film exhibition company providing an exciting out-of-home entertainment experience including traditional film exhibition as well as other content using its digital and satellite capabilities.
With approximately 2,500 employees, Empire Theatres provides excellent employment opportunities for the youth of Canada in an exciting and energetic industry.

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