April 26: Così fan tutte

Apr 22, 2014

Isabel Leonard as Dorabella, Danielle de Niese as Despina, and Susanna Phillips as Fiordiligi in Mozart's "Così fan tutte."
Credit Marty Sohl / Metropolitan Opera

The 2013-14 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season continues with a live broadcast of Mozart’s comic opera Così fan tutte Saturday, April 26 at noon on KLRE Classical 90.5.

Così fan tutte is conducted by Met Music Director James Levine. It features an ensemble cast: Susanna Phillips as Fiordiligi, Isabel Leonard as her sister Dorabella, Danielle de Niese as their feisty maid, Despina, Matthew Polenzani as Ferrando, Rodion Pogossov as Guglielmo, and Maurizio Muraro as the cynical Don Alfonso. Così fan tutte will be heard live over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network at 12:00 p.m. CT on Saturday, April 26.

This broadcast of Così fan tutte will be the 2,465th performance led by James Levine over the course of his 43-year Met career. Among the many highlights of his work with the company are the first-ever Met performances of Mozart’s Idomeneo and La Clemenza di Tito; Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess; Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex; Verdi’s I Vespri Siciliani, I Lombardi and Stiffelio; Weill’s Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny; Schoenberg’s Erwartung and Moses und Aron; Berg’s Lulu; Rossini’s La Cenerentola; and Berlioz’s Benvenuto Cellini, as well as the world premieres of John Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles and John Harbison’s The Great Gatsby. He has conducted Così fan tutte more than 50 times with the company, first in 1982 and most recently this fall, for his triumphant return to the house after an absence of more than two years due to injury. This season he also conducted a new production of Verdi’s Falstaff and a revival of Berg’s Wozzeck.

Soprano Susanna Phillips has sung two other major Mozart heroines at the Met, Pamina in Die Zauberflöte and, last season, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni. She made her company debut as Musetta in Puccini’s La Bohème in 2008 and has since sung the role 28 times with the company, including a broadcast and Live in HD transmission earlier this month. Phillips was the 2010 winner of the Met’s prestigious Beverly Sills Artist Award.

Mezzo-soprano Isabel Leonard’s Met repertory includes three Mozart roles: Dorabella, which she first sang in 2010; Zerlina in Don Giovanni; and Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro, which she will sing again on opening night next season in a new production by Richard Eyre. Leonard made her Met debut as Stéphano in Gounod’s Roméo et Juliette in 2007 and is the winner of both the Met’s 2011 Beverly Sills Artist Award and the 2013 Richard Tucker Award.

Soprano Danielle de Niese, a graduate of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program, sang her first Despina with the company in the 2010-11 season. Her other Met roles have included Cleopatra in Handel’s Giulio Cesare, Euridice in Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice, and both Barbarina and Susanna in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro. She made her Met debut, at 19 years old, in the former role.  She created the role of Ariel in the world premiere of the Baroque pastiche The Enchanted Island and reprised it earlier this season.

Last season, tenor Matthew Polenzani starred as Nemorino in the Opening Night new production of Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore and as Leicester in the Met premiere of Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda. He has sung more than 250 performances in 32 roles at the Met, most recently adding the Duke in Verdi’s Rigoletto. In recent seasons, his Met roles have included Alfredo in the new production premiere of Verdi’s La Traviata, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, Ernesto in Donizetti's Don Pasquale, Tamino in Die Zauberflöte, Belmonte in Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail, and Roméo in Roméo et Juliette. He sang his first Met Ferrando in 2005 and is a winner of both the Beverly Sills Artist Award and the Richard Tucker Award.

Rodion Pogossov is a graduate of the Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Program and made his company role debut as Guglielmo this season.  He has been seen most frequently at the Met as Figaro in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia and as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte and the abridged, English-language holiday staging of that opera. In 2010, he sang Guglielmo at Ravinia in a gala performance celebrating the 60th birthday of James Conlon.

Maurizio Muraro made his Met debut in 2005 as Dr. Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro. He has sung the role a total of 32 times with the company, as well as Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Sulpice in Donizetti’s La Fille du Régiment. Last season, he sang Don Alfonso in Tokyo with the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Yves Abel.

The intermission will include live backstage interviews, led by Live in HD host, soprano Renée Fleming.