Posts Tagged ‘new york’

Photo: Hoffman at the Met

Tuesday, September 1st, 2009
Hoffman takes a dangerous psychological journey through Offenbach's opera.

Hoffman takes a dangerous psychological journey through Offenbach’s opera. Photo: Micaela Rossato/Metropolitan Opera

Jacques Offenbach never saw the premiere of The Tales of Hoffman; he died just four months before its opening in 1881. Hoffman is one take on the life and love affairs of German writer E.T.A. Hoffman, each act telling a different story from the author’s life. The opera explores the destruction of three of Hoffman’s lovers, each of whom dies after Hoffman becomes entangled in their lives, and Hoffman’s ultimate rejection of earthly love for the love of poetry and his muse.

This year, Tony Award winner Bartlett Sher (South Pacific) directs a new Hoffman production. Music Director James Levine conducts Joseph Calleja the in title role. Anna Netrebko is Antonia and Alan Held sings the demonic four villains.

Get your opera fix with us this year — join us this December for Hoffman, Figaro, Il Trittico, and Elektra.

Q&A: Backstage with Joe Rosenberg

Monday, July 27th, 2009

Joe Rosenberg is an architecture and theater historian who is responsible for the landmark designation of Radio City Music Hall, the Beacon Theatre, and more than 40 other historic theaters in New York City. Joe is also Study Leader on our Backstage on Broadway tour. Here, program manager Cheryl Lytle asked him for some insight on his long career in historic preservation. Click here for more information on Joe and traveling with him.

Cheryl Lytle: Your degree is in medical biochemistry. How did you become interested in saving historic buildings in New York City?

Study Leader and Broadway expert Joe Rosenburg

Study Leader and Broadway expert Joe Rosenburg

Joe Rosenberg:For as long as I can remember, I have been interested in ornate motion picture palaces, but it was not until I moved to New York that I became interested in architectural preservation and theater. When it was announced that Radio City Music Hall was scheduled for demolition, I formed a “Showpeople’s Committee to Save Radio City.” After the Music Hall was saved, I was asked to help with the landmark designation of the threatened New Amsterdam Theatre (one of the most beautiful theaters in the world, now beautifully renovated by Disney and home to Mary Poppins). After the landmark designation of the New Amsterdam, I started—in conjunction with Actor’s Equity—an organization called Save The Theatres, which tried unsuccessfully to save several other historic theaters from demolition. However, eventually we were able to get 35 remaining Broadway theaters designated as landmarks. As time went on, I was asked to consult with preservation organizations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and the UK—mostly to save old theaters, but occasionally for designating historic districts.

CL: What do you consider your greatest success story in your long career of saving historic theaters?

JR: Because I pass them every day of my life, I am most proud of being a part of saving Radio City Music Hall, the New Amsterdam, and 35 of the 40 operating Broadway Theaters. (more…)

Video: New York State of Mind

Thursday, July 9th, 2009

When was the last time you visited New York City? Here’s something to bring back your taste for the Big Apple.

Ready to go? Whether you’re interested in opera, Broadway, or art, we’ll get you on your way.

Also, don’t miss this video of the Muppets performing Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind.”

What’s your favorite thing about New York? Share below.

Photo: See the Stars Shine on Broadway

Friday, May 29th, 2009
The bright lights and bustle of Times Square. Photo: David Taylor
The bright lights and bustle of Times Square. Photo: David Taylor

With the Tony Awards fast approaching on June 7 at the Radio City Music Hall, we decided to take the opportunity to offer a glimpse of “Backstage on Broadway.” On our Backstage on Broadway journey in New York City this November, we take you behind the scenes of the “Great White Way” to meet theater professionals and see three hit Broadway plays. Enjoy tickets to two of the hottest acts right nowBilly Elliot, nominated for 15 Tony Awards including Best Musical, and Next to Normal, nominated for 11 Tony Awards including Best Musical.

Click here to read an interview with the Study Leader Joe Rosenberg, a theater historian.

Click here to learn more about our 2009 journey Backstage on Broadway.

Traveler Words: The Metropolitan Opera

Friday, January 30th, 2009

We are grateful that our Smithsonian travelers are so often eager to share their thoughts about their tour experiences with us.

This week, see what others had to say about some of our Metropolitan Opera tours.

“I had wanted to attend a performance of all four Ring operas for, oh, the last 40 years or so. Smithsonian tours finally made this possible for me, with excellent seats at the Met, and accommodations and meals, and a terrific study leader whose presentations made the operas so much more enjoyable. I cannot thank you enough!”

-Janet Goldstein, Wagner’s Ring Cycle at the Met

“Hotel Room – $250.00; Pre-performance dinner – $75.00; Orchestra seat – $175.00; Awaiting the first notes of the overture to your favorite opera at Lincoln Center with new-found opera friends – priceless.”

-Laurie Tomita, Opera 101: Four Outstanding Evenings