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WRTI Spotlight

The Met Opera on WRTI: LADY MACBETH OF MTSENSK, April 18, 1 PM

Join us this Saturday for a rare revival of Dmitri Shostakovich’s searing drama Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, heard in an archived Met Opera performance from November. Shostakovich’s towering tragedy of adultery and murder stars the commanding dramatic soprano Eva-Maria Westbroek as the heroine who suffers the vicissitudes of her treachery. Brandon Jovanovich is her co-conspirator and lover, and James Conlon conducts. Saturday, April 18, 1 to 4:15 pm on WRTI.

Synopsis

Eva-Maria Westbroek stars as the adulterous and murderous Katerina Ismailova, a role she has sung to acclaim at leading houses around the world. James Conlon conducts the performance, which also stars Brandon Jovanovich as Katerina’s lover, Sergei, and Anatoli Kotscherga as her brutal father-in-law, Boris.

Dutch soprano Eva-Maria Westbroek has sung Katerina at the Dutch National Opera, Paris Opera, and Madrid’s Teatro Real. She made her Met debut in 2011 as Sieglinde in the new production of Wagner’s Die Walküre and returned the following season to sing the role in the first full Ring cycles of the new production, and in 2013 to star in the title role of Zandonai’s rarely performed Francesca da Rimini. She is currently singing Santuzza in the Met’s new production of Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana, which will be broadcast on April 25 on WRTI.

James Conlon has conducted 22 operas at the Met over the past 38 years. In addition to the 1994 Met premiere of Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, he led the 1999 company premiere of Carlisle Floyd’s Susannah and the 2005 world premiere of Tobias Picker’s An American Tragedy. His eclectic Met repertory also includes Berlioz’s La Damnation de Faust; Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Peter Grimes; Janá?ek’s Jen?fa; Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Die Zauberflöte; Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov and Khovanshchina; Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites; Rossini’s Semiramide; Strauss’s Salome; Verdi’s Aida, Un Ballo in Maschera, La Traviata, and Il Trovatore; and Wagner’s Der Fliegende Holländer.

Brandon Jovanovich sang Sergei in a 2013 new production of Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk at Zurich Opera. The American tenor made his Met debut as Don José in Bizet's Carmen in the 2009-10 season and returned to the role in 2010-11, as well as earlier this month. His other performances this season include Sam in Susannah at San Francisco Opera, Walter in Weinberg’s The Passenger at Lyric Opera of Chicago, and Florestan in Beethoven’s Fidelio at Zurich Opera.

In 2012, Anatoli Kotscherga made his Met debut as Ivan Khovansky in an acclaimed revival of Khovanshchina. The Ukrainian bass’s recent performances have included the title role in Boris Godunov at the Bavarian State Opera; Sobakin in Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Tsar’s Bride at La Scala and the Berlin State Opera; and the Commendatore in Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Aix-en-Provence Festival and Madrid’s Teatro Real.

The broadcast intermission includes interviews with Eva-Maria Westbroek and James Conlon.