The Met's 2018/19 seas...zzzzzzzzzHumour
The Met announced their 2018⁄19 season, and I’m almost too bored to look at the details.
The good news: Nico Muhly’s Marnie is coming October 19 to November 10, after its world premiere at English National Opera last year. So, there’s your one new opera.
The rest of the season is so goddamned boring it gives me energy. Carmen, Don Giovanni, Aida, Tosca, Rigoletto, The Magic Flute, Otello, La traviata, all four Ring Cycle operas, and - wait for it - La bohème.
There are some mid-level bits of interest, like Adriana Lecouvreur with Netrebko in the title role, Dialogues des Carmélites with Karita Mattila as Madame de Croissy, Pelléas et Mélisande with Paul Appleby as Pelléas, and Mefistofele, the only opera by Arrigo Boito (of Otello and Falstaff libretti fame) - so you know it’s good.
But, compared with the offerings at places like Opera Philadelphia, Minnesota Opera, The Atlanta Opera, and a fast-growing proportion of other regional opera houses in the United States and Canada, the Metropolitan Opera is proving its status as an honest-to-God opera museum.
And besides the singers, the season involves, like, no women.
A few seasons ago, when the Met’s line-up looked equally uninspired, I wrote more thoroughly, and more forgivingly. To be fair, maybe I’m missing the point of the Met’s function within the opera industry. Maybe it’s there to present Big Old Opera, while the leaner companies around it offer new works and picks that are off the beaten path.
It just seems a shame, with all the Met’s money and visibility - and HD broadcasts! - that it’s not a vehicle for opera to move forward.
In the meantime, let us settle in for the latest in “Questo mar rosso…”