For those of you (and I count myself among you) for whom operas have usually been a last choice for go-to events, there’s now a definitive go-to option! The Met’s new broom has swept in all the potential of HDTV (taped live, in real time) broadcasts and reruns projected on the big screen in movie theaters. This is a life-changing experience that will revise your take on both media (opera and television). In short, the concept of opera as bigger-than-life has become a reality. Without binoculars (which magnify the singers while cutting off the naked eye’s 180-degree view ), you can have it all: razor-sharp closeups in saturated color that heighten the material, and long shots that reveal the sets and costumes; the continuous tension of high-wire art in real time, along with gorgeous digital sound.
It’s an intoxicating, deeply sensual encounter that propels you beyond some pretty silly stories right into the stratosphere inhabited by artists who can act — and even move — as compellingly as they sing. It’s the theater that opera was always meant to be; a little like Olympus, and it’s addictive. If you go to the Met’s voluminous (but easy-to-navigate) Web site, you will find not only the programs remaining for this season’s roster, but next season’s goodies as well. There are nine of them, and they are mouth-watering, both in terms of content and casts. And here’s the best part: they will be available in a country, city, and theater near you. No matter where in the world you live. Don’t miss the chance to see and hear: www.metopera.org