Luciano Pavarotti, Shirley Verrett, Jonas Kaufmann, Elīna Garanča, Matthew Polenzani, Janai Brugger Headline Top 10 Operas to Stream This Week

By David Salazar

As we enter the final month of the year, opera companies and streams are coming in full force. This week’s selections undeniably favor lovers of the standard repertory and star power. There are a number of galas and recital showcases to look forward to as well.

Here is a rundown of our top 10 operas to stream this week.

Die Tote Stadt – La Monnaie / De Munt (NOW)

La Monnaie is streaming a production of the Korngold opera that it managed to record prior to a second shutdown. The company was set to showcase a lengthy run of performances but was only able to get into two shows. The opera stars Dietrich Henschel, Bernadetta Grabias, martina Russomanno, Lily Jørstad, Florian Hoffmann, Nikolay Borchev, and Mateusz Zajdel. The production was directed by Mariusz Trelinski with Lothar Koenigs conducting.

Watch it here.

Matthew Polenzani in Recital – Vocal Arts DC (Nov. 30)

Those seeking out a more intimate experience can join in on Matthew Polenzani’s recital with Vocal Arts DC. Polenzani and pianist Natalia Katykova will perform music by Francis Poulenc, Charles Ives, and Gerald Finzi.

Watch it here.

Fedora – Teatro Grattacielo (Dec. 1)

Teatro Grattacielo is set to present a filmed version of Giordano’s other famed work. This production, which was directed by Malena Dayen, stars Michelle Johnson, Jeremy Brauner, Marcello Guzzo, Maria Brea, Samuel White, Eugenia Forteza, Rubin Casas, Michael Gracco, Brian Montgomery, Jordan Weatherstone Pitts, Rick Agster, Kinneret Ely, Pavel Suliandziga, William Desbiens, and Ezio Pellitteri.

Watch it here.

Three Decembers – Opera San Jose (Dec. 3)

Opera San José will present Jake Heggie and Terrence McNally’s opera in a video production headlined by Susan Graham, Maya Kherani, and Efraín Solís. Additionally, audiences will get a chance to check out a behind-the-scenes documentary that details the making-of process for the opera video.

Watch it here.

Les vêpres siciliennes – Teatro dell’Opera di Roma (Dec. 1-3)

Daniele Gatti will open this production of the middle-period Verdi opera from the 2019-20 season which featured a cast headlined by  Roberto Frontali (Guy de Montfort), John Osborn (Henri), Michele Pertusi (Jean Procida), and Roberta Mantegna (Hélène).

Watch it here.

Celebrating the Voices of San Francisco Opera – San Francisco Opera (Dec. 4)

The San Francisco Opera will be showcasing a virtual gala celebrating a number of major artists including Janai Brugger, Ashley Dixon, Amina Edris, Sondra Radvanovsky, Michael Fabiano, Pene Pati, Artur Ruciński, Alfred Walker, Nicola Luisotti, and Members of the Company, performing from around the world in such cities as Madrid, Chicago, Aukland, New York, and Berlin, among others. The event will be co-hosted by Tad and Dianne Taube General Director Matthew Shilvock and Caroline H. Hume Music Director Designate Eun Sun Kim.

Watch it here.

Cavalleria Rusticana – Teatro San Carlo di Napoli (Dec. 4)

For those seeking out a star-studded showcase, the Italian theater will open its season with a concert performance of Mascagni’s “Cavalleria Rusticana” conducted by Juraj Valčuha. The opera stars Elīna Garanča as Santuzza and Jonas Kaufmann as Turiddu.

Watch it here.

Songs of Gratitude – Festival Napa Valley (Dec. 5)

Festival Napa Valley will present a unique concert performance featuring mezzo-soprano Kelley O’Connor and tenor Nicholas Phan as well as the Friction String Quartet, cellist Starla Breshears, a traditional Mexican roots ensemble from Los Cenzontles Cultural Arts. Also performing will be Academy, Jookin dancer, and ambassador Ron “Prime Tyme” Myles, jazz singer Lucinda Belle, and pianist Audrey Vardanega.

Watch it here.

Simon Boccanegra – Opernhaus Zürich (Dec. 6)

Verdi’s middle period masterwork will be presented in a production starring Christian Gerhaher in the title role and Jennifer Rowley as Amelia. Christof Fischesser, Nicholas Brownlee, and Otar Jorjikia round out the cast, which is conducted by Fabio Luisi.

Tosca – Metropolitan Opera (Dec. 6)

The Met Opera closes out its week with a stream from 1978 featuring Shirley Verrett in the title role of Puccini’s famed melodrama. She is joined by Luciano Pavarotti in one of his signature roles and Cornell MacNeil in one of his famed interpretations.

Watch it here.