Jonas Kaufmann, Karita Mattila, Jessye Norman, Hildegard Behrens Headline Top 10 Operas to Stream This Week

By David Salazar

While theaters are opening, more and more American opera companies are committing to the online presentation. So there is no doubt that there will be plenty of streaming options for the foreseeable future. And we will be here to spotlight 10 operas every week.

But as we have done over the past few weeks, do not forget to check out important discussions taking place regarding issues of race and equality in opera. We continue to recommend checking out several online shows such as Karen Slack’s “KikiKonversations,” Kenneth Overton’s “Black Opera Live,” “The Sitdown with LB,” hosted by Lawrence Brownlee, and Mark S. Doss’ “Heart and Soul” series on Sunday afternoons.

And here are our top 10 operas to stream this week!

Opera Gala – Staatsoper Berlin (NOW)

This opera gala features a number of major superstars including Olga Peretyatko, Elsa Dreisig, René Pape, Anna Prohaska, Michael Volle, Charles Castronovo, and many others. Check it out here.

The Little Prince – Utah Opera (NOW)

Rachel Portman and Nicholas Wright’s masterwork is now streaming thanks to Utah Opera. It’s a perfect opportunity to check out a modern opera that all kinds of opera lovers will enjoy. It has the added bonus of being perfect for children as well. The opera will be streaming through August 5, 2020.

Monday Concert Starring Jonas Kaufmann – Bayerische Staatsoper (June 29)

The Bavarian State Opera will close out its Monday concert series with a big program headlined by opera superstar Jonas Kaufmann.  The tenor will take on music by Mahler alongside the Bayerische Staatsoper’s Orchestra and Kirill Petrenko. The concert will also feature music by Strauss, Stravinsky, and Schönberg.

Vienna State Opera – Falstaff (June 30)

End the month of June on a high note with Verdi’s rousing comedy. The cast is stellar, featuring Ambrogio Maestri, Ludovic Tézier, Paolo Fanale, Herwig Pecoraro, Riccardo Fassi, Thomas Ebenstein, Carmen Giannattasio, Hila Fahima, Marie-Nicole Lemieux, and Lilly Jørstad under the fantastic musical direction of Zubin Mehta.

Die Walküre – Metropolitan Opera (June 30)

The initial inclination was to go with Beverly Sills and Alfredo Kraus’ historic performance of “Don Pasquale.” But unfortunately, that opera’s presentation is taking place the same week as this legendary performance which is undoubtedly one of the finest of this opera to ever be put on video recording. First off, it features Hildegard Behrens in a legendary turn as Brünnhilde. She’s matched by equally iconic performances from Jessye Norman, Christa Ludwig, and of course, James Morris in his masterful interpretation of Wotan. Gary Lakes and Kurt Moll are also solid as Siegmund and Hunding. Then there is the Otto Schenk production which is legendary in its own right.

Don’t miss this broadcast.

Karita Mattila in Recital – Savonlinna Festival (July 1)

The legendary soprano will perform alongside Ville Matvejeff in a program that features music by Dvorak, Brahms, Wagner, Mackeben, Gershwin, Puccini, Romberg,  Sibelius, and Merikanto. Check out what is sure to be a fantastic show here.

The ZOOMpresario – Opera del West (July 2)

Opera del West is offering up an updated version of Mozart’s rarely performed gem, specially made for the Zoom culture we are all living through. The opera stars  Aurora Martin, Joel Edwards, Theodora Cottarel, and Rosie Osser with musical direction by Eve Kochen Budnick. Sign up for the premiere performance here.

“La Bohème” – Cincinnati Opera (July 4)

Those seeking out a more traditional work will be at home with Cincinnati Opera’s production of Puccini’s Masterpiece. This 2017 rendition stars Nicole Cabell, Jessica Rivera, Sean Pannikar, Rodion Pogossov, Nathan Stark, and Edward Nelson.

Il Barbieri di Siviglia – Santa Fe Opera (July 3)

On what should have been the opening night of the Santa Fe Opera season, the company will instead be doing a concert dedicated to the Rossini classic originally intended to initiate it. The showcase will be hosted by legendary mezzo-soprano Susan Graham. Learn more here.

Susannah – San Francisco Opera (July 4)

San Francisco Opera will celebrate the U.S.’ national holiday with one of the great American opera. Michael Cavanaugh’s production of “Susannah” will star soprano Patricia Racette in the title role alongside Brandon Jovanovich as Sam Polk. Other cast members include Raymond Aceto, James Kryshak, and Catherine Cook. Karen Kamensek conducts.