Metropolitan Opera

The Metropolitan Opera House is a theater company at the Lincoln Center in New York City. It is colloquially referred to as the "Met" and is one of the world's leading opera houses. Since the beginning of the 2006/07 season is Peter Gelb general manager of the "Met". James Levine is music director since 1974, and thus the conductor of this project into the history of the house for the longest time; 1986 to 2004 he was also artistic director. Expected by 2013 he is represented to illness by the Principal Conductor Fabio Luisi.


The Metropolitan Opera Company was founded in 1880 and received a building was created by architect J. Cleaveland Cady opera house, which was between the 39th and 40th Street on Broadway. On August 27, 1892, a fire heavily damaged the building. After extensive renovation, the venue could reopen and are still used until 1966. Then the Metropolitan Opera Company, its registered office and thus to move their opera house to its present location decided. The first opera house was demolished in 1967.

The Metropolitan Opera opened on October 22, 1883 with the opera Faust ( German title Margarete ) by Charles Gounod. The opening of the new opera hall at Lincoln Center on September 16, 1966 was also the world premiere of Samuel Barber's Antony and Cleopatra.

A number of world premieres of works by Giacomo Puccini were to experience in the "old " hall of "Met" La Fanciulla del West ( The Girl of the Golden West ) in December 1910 and Il trittico in December 1918; Suor Angelica (the coat), Suor Angelica ( Sister Angelica ) and Gianni Schicchi, further in October 1958 Samuel Barber's Vanessa, who was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for music.

At least since the beginning of the 20th century was the "Met " as the next to the Vienna State Opera and the Teatro alla Scala in Milan leading opera house in the world what great conductors such as Gustav Mahler, Felix Mottl and 1908-1915 Arturo Toscanini contributed as principal conductor. Above all, it made ​​the director for policy to always hire the most famous singer in the world ( despaired of their airs Mottl ), so in the first few years, inter alia, Lilli Lehmann, Jean and Edouard de Reszke brothers, Ema Destinová, Nellie Melba, Lillian Nordica, Olive Fremstad, Jacques Urlus and especially Enrico Caruso, who made his debut as the Duke in Rigoletto in 1903 and remained at the house until November 1920. 1908 Mahler began his work at the "Met" Tristan and Isolde. Lucrezia Bori sang from 1912 to 1936 over 600 performances for the Met Maria Callas was seen in November 1956 for the first time in the opera Norma and listen.

In September 1966, the company moved into a new building in the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Twelve other cultural organizations are also based at the Lincoln Center. In the new room there was in March 1967 Mourning Becomes Electra by Marvin David Levy another world premiere and with Plácido Domingo ( September 1968 ) and Luciano Pavarotti ( November 1968 ) there were two world-renowned great singers on stage. In December 1991 and in October 1992 was followed by two more world premieres, The Ghosts of Versailles by John Corigliano and The Voyage by Philip Glass.


The building on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, situated between Columbus Avenue and Amsterdam Avenue between 62nd and 65th street. The hall can accommodate 3,900 visitors.

The magnificent curtain of the Metropolitan Opera has provided several hundred kilograms and with cords made of pure silk and sequins. The new jewelry curtain, which replaced the old in 2005, was manufactured by the German company GERRIETS from Umkirch in Freiburg im Breisgau.


The organ of the Metropolitan Opera House was built in 1965-1966 by the organ builder Aeolian - Skinner. The instrument has 20 stops ( 1,289 pipes ) on two manuals and pedal. The entire pipe work is located in a swell box. The tracker action are electric.

  • Couplers: II / I, I / I ( as a sub and Superoktavkoppeln ), II / II ( Sub and Superoktavkoppeln ), I / P, II / P

Radio transmissions

In the "Met", there was the birth of the first opera in the transmission still stuck in the early years of broadcasting. On January 13, 1910, the double presentation of the opera Cavalleria rusticana and Pagliacci with Enrico Caruso and other performers was broadcast to the public. The initiative came from Lee De Forest, an early radio pioneer. The program could also listen to a 20 km distant ship .. The circle of listeners in New York City, the earplugs needed for broadcast reception, was small.

The Saturday matinee performances of the Metropolitan Opera are live on many radio stations in the U.S. and to hear about out since Christmas Day 1931. The first transmitted bit was the opera Hansel and Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck. To finance the radio transmission was found since 1940 an integral sponsor who in 2004, however his commitment ended. Since then, the Metropolitan Opera Fund this program with the help of donations tries to put on a secure financial footing.

Cinema broadcasts

Selected performances will be broadcast live in the series " Metropolitan Opera Live in HD" in cinemas in the U.S. and abroad. The transmissions achieve good utilization and improve the income situation of the house.