Opera on your local screen

Most of the opera houses of the world are wrapping up their seasons and the festivals won’t start for a few weeks. But if you don’t mind video, there’s interesting stuff to be had wherever you are.

First, in Vienna, is the Rathausplatz Film Festival, which shows operas, concerts, and dance on a big screen on the front of the city hall throughout July and August. It’s free, there are chairs, and there a ton of food stands, too (more people come for the food than the opera, actually). The program includes some performances not available on DVD: this year they will show the Bayerische Staatsoper’s Fidelio live from Munich on July 8, and some Anna Netrebko Staatsoper performances (Carmen and Manon) from the archives of Austrian TV. Also the camptastic looking Hunter’s Bride movie version of Freischütz on Saturday–I’m certainly going to be at that one.

If you aren’t in Vienna, consider not going outside and enjoying the beautiful weather, stay inside instead and stare at your computer scene and watch an opera with your tinny laptop speakers!

If want to watch Calixto Bieito’s puzzling and slightly traumatizing Fidelio from somewhere other than Munich or Vienna, you can do so on July 8 from the Bayerische Staatsoper’s website. I’m going to a Klaus Florian Vogt concert that night, but I’ve already seen this Fidelio. I think if I did see it again I might come up with something entirely different as to what it’s “about,” though. Worth watching just for Anja Kampe and Jonas Kaufmann, however.

But for something to watch now, consider De Nederlandse Opera’s fabulous Eugene Onegin via this Dutch TV website, which is really a must-see and only the second Stefan Herheim production to appear on video, oddly (my review from Amsterdam). Even if you aren’t interested in Herheim it is worth watching for the musical values. (Thanks to Intermezzo for the tip.)

Also, I think everyone else has already seen Glyndebourne’s Meistersinger but if you, like me, haven’t had time to watch it yet, you can do so here until July 3. Opinions have been mixed but people seem to think it’s worth watching for Gerald Finley’s Hans Sachs. I am going to try to put in the effort to see it, but I have two more Meistersingers lined up for this summer and three Meistersingers are like six or seven Traviatas, so.

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  1. there will be another opera performance to be watched online from Glyndebourne this year. In August. Stravinsky, I think.

    Thank you for the information:))

  2. This is fantastic Zerbinetta! I'll definite watch the Onegin for EVERYTHING and the Glyndebourne's Meistersinger for Gerald Finley, the most noble and heartfelt Hans Sachs I've ever experienced!

  3. I was quite disappointed by the technical quality of the Guardian's Glyndebourne replay; if five hours of very compressed picture and sound doesn't bother you, then you might last longer than I did. It's odd, because the bits of the live relay I saw were of a much higher streaming quality and there was the option of select from three different bandwidth versions. It's a terrific endeavour on the part of Glyndebourne and the Guardian, but I couldn't help thinking that the low standard of their replay video let the whole thing down. I think I'd rather wait for the DVD.

  4. I totally agree with what Andrew says in the above. (I thought I was the only one having this problem.) But the production is so engrossing that I have endured the LP quality of the replay several times since the live broadcast last Sunday. Yeah, I am glad I can indulge in this sort of hoopla during my summer break. ^^

  5. I watched the first act of Meistersinger live (the high res version), and the second act and Wahn monologue on the replay. Picture/sound quality for me were the same for both (and I'd have certainly noticed LP quality). I didn't have the time to make it to the end, though the seriously boring production didn't help either. But I liked Finley a lot.