GREAT PERFORMANCES AT THE MET: Il Trovatore on WXXI-TV

GREAT PERFORMANCES AT THE MET: Il Trovatore on WXXI-TV

Sun, 08/28/2011 - 12:00pm

Pictured: Dolora Zajick as Azucena

Credit: Courtesy of Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera

James Levine conducts David McVicar’s stirring production of Verdi’s intense opera starring Marcelo Álvarez.

Verdi's Il Trovatore, starring four of the world's most celebrated interpreters of the leading roles and conducted by Marco Armiliato, will air on Great Performances at the Met Sunday, August 28 at 12 p.m. on WXXI-TV/HD (DT21.1/cable 1011 and 11).

The cast earned excellent reviews for their performances after the premiere of David McVicar's critically acclaimed production in 2009: as the heroic troubadour of the title, Marcelo Álvarez is "exciting, conveying Manrico's urgency and desperation" (The Wall Street Journal); in the role of Leonora, Sondra Radvanovsky is "remarkable...a spirited, feisty heroine" (Variety); Dolora Zajick is "a force of nature" (The New York Times) as Azucena, the gypsy with a dark secret; and Dmitri Hvorostovsky's "vivid presence and rich baritone emphasize Count di Luna's swings between hell-bent vengeance and romantic obsession" (Variety).

McVicar's production of Il Trovatore, notoriously difficult to stage due to its complex plot, also won critical acclaim for its straightforward emotional power. The New York Times applauded McVicar's "clear-headed, psychologically insightful and fluid staging." This staging of Il Trovatore, which is visually inspired by Francisco Goya's series of prints entitled "The Disasters of War," features sets by Charles Edwards, costumes by Brigitte Reiffenstuel, lighting by Jennifer Tipton, and choreography by Leah Hausman.

Renée Fleming is the host for Il Trovatore and will interview the opera's stars during the intermission. Barbara Willis Sweete directs the transmission and Jay David Saks is music producer.

Great Performances is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, and Joseph A. Wilson. Corporate support for Great Performances at the Met is provided by Toll Brothers, America's luxury home builder®.

Visit Great Performances online at www.pbs.org/gperf for additional information on this and other Great Performances programs. For the Met, Mia Bongiovanni and Elena Park are Supervising Producers, and Louisa Briccetti and Victoria Warivonchik are Producers. Peter Gelb is Executive Producer. For Great Performances, Bill O'Donnell is Series Producer; David Horn is Executive Producer.

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