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The Met Live in HD: HAMLET (Dean), with pre-opera talk by Dr. Morton Achter

June 4 @ 1:00 pm - 4:30 pm

June 4
1:00 pm - 4:30 pm

Pre-opera talks begin at 11:45 AM, and the operas begin at 1 PM. Following the broadcast, there will be a brief “post-opera” discussion about what you have just seen, for those who wish to stay on.

When Australian composer Brett Dean’s Hamlet had its world premiere at the Glyndebourne Festival in 2017, The Guardian declared, “New opera doesn’t often get to sound this good … Shakespeare offers a gauntlet to composers that shouldn’t always be picked up, but Dean’s Hamlet rises to the challenge.” On June 4, this riveting contemporary masterpiece appears live in cinemas, with Neil Armfield, who directed the work’s premiere, bringing his acclaimed staging to the Met. Many of the original cast members have followed, including tenor Allan Clayton in the title role. Nicholas Carter makes his Met debut conducting a remarkable ensemble, which also features soprano Brenda Rae as Ophelia, mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly as Gertrude, baritone Rod Gilfry as Claudius, and John Relyea as the ghost of Hamlet’s father.

Nicholas Carter (Conductor); Brenda Rae (Ophelia), Sarah Connolly (Gertrude), Aryeh Nussbaum Cohen (Rosencrantz), Christopher Lowrey (Guildenstern), Allan Clayton (Hamlet), David Butt Philip (Laertes), William Burden (Polonius), Jacques Imbrailo (Horatio), Rod Gilfry (Claudius), John Relyea (Ghost)

Neil Armfield (Production), Ralph Myers (Set Designer), Alice Babidge (Costume Designer), Jon Clark (Lighting Designer), Denni Sayers (Movement Director)

Estimated Running Time: 3 hours, 15 minutes (w/ one 30 minute intermission)

Hamlet pre-opera talk:  “Hamlet Returns”  at 11:45 AM

Shakespeare’s masterpiece also has attracted (and usually defeated) many opera composers since 1705, and this latest effort from 2017 is at least the sixteenth attempt.  Why has Hamlet, especially among the Bard’s major plays, been so stubbornly resistant to successful musical rendition?

This is the twelfth season of The Met: Live in HD for which Morton Achter, a resident of  Topsham and formerly of New Harbor, will present a series of pre-opera talks prior to selected broadcasts at the Lincoln Theater.  A retired college professor, Dr. Achter has taught about, produced, and directed opera and related stage genres for over sixty years. Educated at the Eastman School of Music and M.I.T., and holding a Ph.D. in music and theater history from the University of Michigan, locally he has directed productions for the Lincoln County Community Theater, River Company, Round Top Center for the Arts, and Bath’s Chocolate Church Arts Center.  He serves on the Board of Directors of Midcoast Senior College in Brunswick, and has offered music-related courses for the organization since 2010.