DESKTOP
TABLET (max. 1024px)
MOBILE (max. 640px)
Return to Top
Ludwig Van
Toronto Montreal

CRITIC'S PICKS | Classical And Opera Streams You Absolutely Need To See This Week: March 22 – 28

By Joseph So on March 22, 2021

Classical music and opera events streaming on the web for the week of March 22 – 28.
Classical music and opera events streaming on the web for the week of March 22 – 28.

Critic’s Picks (March 22 – 28)

“We live in an extraordinary Age” – Carl Sagan. For a second year, COVID-19 continues to decimate our musical life. With the onset of the dreaded Third Wave led by new variants, any plan to reopen has proven challenging. Virtually all European venues are closed to live audiences. France has just announced a new lockdown for Paris to last four weeks starting March 19. Italy and Germany are in full lockdown mode. Austria’s Salzburg Easter Festival is postponed to coincide with All Saint’s Day on November 1, with a revised program to be announced in May. Frankly, the situation is unpredictable, due to the ever-changing pandemic situation.

At press time, the Prague Summer Nights Young Artists Music Festival is still going ahead for an in-person festival (July 5-Aug 2), despite the Czech Republic having the highest cases per million population of any country in the world. The Polish National Opera has announced a new program for March and April, opening with Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet followed by Puccini’s Madama Butterfly with Aleksandra Kurzak, followed by Die Zauberfloete (March 26, 27, 28), Cardillac (April 23, 25, 27, 29), and Werther with Piotr Beczala (April 9 and 11). Switzerland has further extended its closure beyond the originally announced March 31. Bayerische Staatsoper München cancelled a run of Lucia di Lammermoor (March 20 & 26) and I vespri Siciliani (April 5, 10 & 13), although it did stream the new Der Rosenkavalier on March 21.

La Scala had an outbreak of COVID cases in the Corps de Ballet, with 35 dancers and 3 staff members tested positive. The planned recording of the Tribute to Nureyev Gala has been suspended. On the opera front, La Scala is presenting a concert on March 24 starring Francesco Meli and Maria Agresta, to be streamed on Youtube. The Palau de Les Arts Reina Sofía in Valencia, Spain has rescheduled Daniele Gatti’s Verdi Requiem to July 1 and the upcoming Tristan und Isolde will be replaced by Falstaff, due to the large orchestra and chorus requirements for Wagner. Interestingly, a new study by Fraunhofer Heinrich Institute & Konzerthaus Dortmund has concluded that concert halls and theatres are safe when attendance is kept to 50% of capacity and with the proper precautions. Let’s hope they are right!

The Royal Swedish Opera has extended its closure until at least March 26. If the pandemic situation allows, the opera house will reopen for the premiere of Ariadne auf Naxos on March 27. It has just announced it will stream a Tosca with Malin Byström available throughout March. France has just announced a new lockdown for the next four weeks, affecting all performing arts venues. The Paris Opera will stream Faust from the Opéra Bastille on March 26, accessible on France 5, and will then be made available on Culturebox for six months. The Opéra Comique in Paris cancelled La Belle Hélène in March starring Canadian mezzo Marie–Nicole Lemieux. Toulouse’s Théâtre du Capitole will remain closed, cancelling the scheduled Pelléas et Mélisande. Opéra de Rouen Normandie has cancelled all performances in March.

On this side of the pond, there are modest signs of a resumption. LA Opera is launching a Signature Recital Series online to showcase singers the likes of Russell Thomas, J’Nai Bridges, Christine Goerke, Julia Bullock, and Susan Graham, in venues across the country and in Europe, available on-demand. Houston Grand Opera will present My Favorite Things: Songs from The Sound of Music on May 8, a singalong and fundraiser featuring members of the principal cast from the full production. The Merola Opera Program will present a virtual charity gala, scheduled on April 10. Un Gala In Maschera is a tribute to Merola’s artistic director, Sheri Greenawald. San Francisco Opera is streaming its Ring Cycle throughout March.

Now in its 54th week, the Met’s nightly free streaming continues with Myths and Legends, with many great singers such as Placido Domingo, Renee Fleming, Hildegard Behrens, and Bryn Terfel. All Met streams start at 7:30 p.m. ET and remain available for 23 hours. Canadian singers this week include soprano Adrianne Pieczonka and bass John Relyea. After a delay, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra’s streaming of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons commences this week. Also, watch out for the monthly video blog of Perryn Leech, the incoming COC General Director.

Monday 22

Met | Gluck’s Orfeo ed. Euridice Starring Danielle de Niese, Heidi Grant Murphy, and Stephanie Blythe, conducted by James Levine. Production by Mark Morris. From January 24, 2009. | Details

Tuesday 23

Met | Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust. Starring Susan Graham, Marcello Giordani, and John Relyea, conducted by James Levine. Production by Robert Lepage. From November 22, 2008. | Details

Wednesday 24

Met | Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride. Starring Susan Graham, Plácido Domingo, Paul Groves, and Gordon Hawkins, conducted by Patrick Summers. Production by Stephen Wadsworth. From February 26, 2011. | Details

Thursday 25

Met | Strauss’s Elektra. Starring Nina Stemme, Adrianne Pieczonka, Waltraud Meier, and Eric Owens, conducted by Esa-Pekka Salonen. Production by Patrice Chéreau. From April 30, 2016. | Details

Friday 26

Met | Mozart’s Idomeneo. Starring Hildegard Behrens, Ileana Cotrubas, Frederica von Stade, Luciano Pavarotti, and John Alexander, conducted by James Levine. Production by Jean-Pierre Ponnelle. From November 6, 1982. | Details

Saturday 27

San Francisco Opera | Wagner’s Götterdammerung — 1 p.m. ET. SFO’s March Ring Festival ends with the sublime Götterdammerung, in the Francesca Zambello production, with a striking cast. Free stream, available until 11:59 p.m. Pacific time Sunday. Registration required. | Details

Tapestry Opera | Where Do I Go? — 8 p.m. ET. Pianist Morgan-Paige Melbourne and dancer Natasha Poon Woo intertwine contemporary dance, spoken word and masterful piano in a short film about “finding serenity in a time when hope is withering and uncertainty grows unbearable, but not all is lost.” The film is followed by behind-the-scenes interviews with the creative team. | Details

Met | Mozart’s Don Giovanni. Starring Renée Fleming, Solveig Kringelborn, Hei-Kyung Hong, Paul Groves, Bryn Terfel, Ferruccio Furlanetto, and Sergei Koptchak, conducted by James Levine. Production by Franco Zeffirelli. From October 14, 2000. | Details

Sunday 28

Met | Wagner’s Der Fliegende Holländer. Starring Anja Kampe, Mihoko Fujimura, Sergey Skorokhodov, David Portillo, Evgeny Nikitin, and Franz-Josef Selig, conducted by Valery Gergiev. Production by François Girard. From March 10, 2020. | Details

Video-on-demand performances:

1) Screaming Divas | Sophie Joyce. Streamed on March 19, Sondra Radvanovsky and Keri Alkema chat with Sophie Joyce, Director of Casting at the Paris Opera, “about starting a new job during a pandemic and the challenges facing young singers today as well as what it takes to cast an opera.” Joyce has Alexander Neef’s old job in Paris, where he was casting director for five years before joining the COC.

2) National Ballet of Canada Spotlight Series. The National is offering free streams of its many gems, which you can explore here. Last week the highlight was a collection of three contemporary ballets. This week, the focus is on the classics, with excerpts of Giselle and Le Corsaire, as well as the dazzling finale to Harold Lander’s Etudes.

3) Wigmore Hall | St. Patrick’s Day Concert. Streamed March 17, it features soprano Ailish Tynan, tenor Robin Tritschler, and pianist James Baillieu. The concert celebrates the global Irish diaspora and the strong cultural and artistic bonds between Britain and Ireland, in a program of Irish poetry and folksongs.

4) Gärtnerplatztheater München | Strauss & Co. Streamed March 6, Gärtnerplatztheater is Munich’s third opera house, after the Nationaltheater and the Cuvilliestheater. I have attended performances at Gärtnerplatztheater, and while it doesn’t offer big name singers, the voices and productions are of a high standard. This performance features arias from operas by Mozart, Rossini, Verdi, Donizetti, Lehar as well as the two Strausses. It gives us a fair glimpse of what this Company has to offer.

5) Canadian Opera Company | Check-in with Perryn. Here’s a fresh innovation for COC fans, a monthly digital video blog hosted by their incoming General Director Perryn Leech, speaking directly to the COC audience. You can ask him questions by emailing audiences@coc.ca Here’s their inaugural Episode #1 that came out on March 3.

6) Toronto Symphony Orchestra | TSO On Demand: Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Available March 26 – April 15. Jonathan Crow and 21 TSO musicians perform The Four Seasons, and two contemporary works, “Coqueteos” from Gabriela Lena Frank’s Leyendas: An Andean Walkabout, and Dinuk Wijeratne’s “A letter from the After-life” from Two Pop Songs on Antique Poems. Tickets: $20. Purchasers will receive an email with instruction how to access the concert online. | Details

#LUDWIGVAN

Get the daily arts news straight to your inbox.

Sign up for the Ludwig van Daily — classical music and opera in five minutes or less HERE.

Joseph So
Joseph So
Share this article
lv_toronto_banner_high_590x300
comments powered by Disqus

Ludwig Van Toronto

CRITIC'S PICKS | Classical And Opera Streams You Absolutely Need To See This Week: March 15 – 21

By Joseph So on March 15, 2021

Classical music and opera events streaming on the web for the week of March 15 – 21.
Read the full story Comments
Share this article
lv_toronto_banner_high_590x300

THE SCOOP | Toronto Theatre Shuts Doors Due To Unsustainable Rent Increases

By Michael Vincent on March 22, 2021

Toronto’s Lower Ossington Theatre (LOT) has announced it’s closing down permanently.
Read the full story Comments
Share this article

GUIDE | The Best Classical Music Streaming Services Online

By Anya Wassenberg on March 24, 2021

What's the best streaming service for classical music lovers? With so many options available on the market, it's a good question.
Read the full story Comments
Share this article
lv_toronto_banner_low_590x300
lv_toronto_ssb_atf_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_high_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_mid_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_low_300x300
lv_toronto_tsb_high_300x700
lv_toronto_tsb_low_300x700
lv_toronto_ssb_atf_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_high_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_mid_300x300
lv_toronto_ssb_low_300x300
lv_toronto_tsb_high_300x700
lv_toronto_tsb_low_300x700

We have detected that you are using an adblocking plugin in your browser.

The revenue we earn by the advertisements is used to manage this website. Please whitelist our website in your adblocking plugin.