Metropolitan Opera Radio on SIRIUS to Broadcast Third Season Live from the Metropolitan Opera

SIRIUS' live broadcast of the Met's Opening Night Gala on Monday, September 22, will star Renee Fleming

The third season of Met Opera Radio on SIRIUS will feature 127 performances broadcast live from the opera house stage

NEW YORK, Sept. 18 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SIRIUS XM Radio (SIRI) today announced it will broadcast its third season live from the Metropolitan Opera beginning with Opening Night on Monday, September 22 and will include 127 live performances during the Met's 2008-2009 season.

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The season will start with the Met's Opening Night Gala on Monday, September 22, on Metropolitan Opera Radio SIRIUS channel 78. Coverage of opening night will begin with an overview of the evening's red carpet events, backstage interviews and a season preview starting at 6 pm ET. Met Opera Radio's Opening Night Gala will star Renee Fleming performing in some of her most acclaimed roles, beginning with Act II of Verdi's La Traviata, conducted by Met Music Director James Levine, and continuing with Act III of Massenet's Manon, conducted by Marco Armiliato, and the final scene of Richard Strauss's one act opera, Capriccio, conducted by Patrick Summers.

Highlights of the Met Opera Radio 2008-09 schedule include every season premiere and all six of the Met's new productions: the Met premiere of John Adams's opera about the creation of the atomic bomb, Doctor Atomic; Berlioz's La Damnation de Faust; Massenet's Thais; Puccini's La Rondine; Verdi's Il Trovatore; and Bellini's La Sonnambula. Host Margaret Juntwait along with Will Berger will return to the Met Opera Radio channel.

In addition to its third season of broadcasting performances live from the Met, Met Opera Radio will air a salute to Placido Domingo's 40th year with the Met. The Domingo Festival on Met Opera Radio will feature a special four-day salute to the great Spanish tenor, including six archival Met broadcasts selected from the long span of his career, including Les Contes d'Hoffmann (1982), Otello (1988), The Queen of Spades (2004), and the SIRIUS premieres of the broadcast of Lohengrin (1985) and Il Trovatore (1975). The salute to Placido Domingo will begin Thursday, September 25 starting at 9 pm ET

Metropolitan Opera Radio broadcasts an unprecedented number of live Metropolitan Opera performances each week throughout the Met's entire season, as well as the largest collection of live recordings, newly restored and re-mastered, from the Met's 77-year broadcast history. The 24/7 channel features an average of four live broadcasts each week throughout the Met's performance season enhanced with live interviews and dynamic intermission programs in addition to Saturday matinee performances.

A schedule of this season's Metropolitan Opera Radio broadcasts on SIRIUS is available at

For more information about the Metropolitan Opera, please visit

About the Met

Under the leadership of General Manager Peter Gelb and Music Director James Levine, the Met has a series of bold initiatives underway that are designed to broaden its audience and revitalize the company's repertory. The Met has made a commitment to presenting modern masterpieces alongside the classic repertory, with highly theatrical productions featuring the greatest opera stars in the world.

The Metropolitan Opera's 2008-09 season pays tribute to the company's extraordinary history on the occasion of its 125th anniversary, while also emphasizing the Met's renewed commitment to advancing the art form. The upcoming season features six new productions, 18 revivals, the final performances of Otto Schenk's production of Wagner's Ring cycle conducted by Levine, and two gala celebrations; the galas include the season-opening performance featuring Renee Fleming as well as a 125th anniversary celebration on March 15. New productions include the company premiere of John Adams's Doctor Atomic as well as the Met's first staged production of Berlioz's La Damnation de Faust, and Massenet's Thais, Puccini's La Rondine, Verdi's Il Trovatore, and Bellini's La Sonnambula. Future seasons include new presentations of John Corigliano's The Ghosts of Versailles (2009-10) and Thomas Ades's The Tempest (2011-12).

Building on its 77-year-old international radio broadcast history - heard over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network - the Met now uses advanced media distribution platforms and state-of-the-art technology to attract new audiences and reach millions of opera fans around the world.

The Met: Live in HD series reached more than 935,000 people in the 2007-08 season, more than the number of people who saw performances in the opera house. These performances began airing on PBS in March 2008, and eight of these HD performances are currently or will soon be available on DVD, on the EMI and Universal labels. In the 2008-09 season, the series expands to feature 11 live transmissions, starting with the Met's Opening Night Gala and spanning the entire season. The HD productions will be seen in over 850 theaters in approximately 30 countries around the world. Five new productions will be featured, including the Met premiere of John Adams's Doctor Atomic. The Opening Night transmission will be seen in the Americas only; the remaining ten high-definition productions will be shown live worldwide on Saturdays through May 9 with encores the following Wednesdays.

Live in HD in Schools, the Met's new program offering free opera transmissions to New York City schools in partnership with the New York City Department of Education and the Metropolitan Opera Guild, reached more than 7,000 public school students and teachers during the 2007-08 season. This season, Live in HD in Schools expands to reach schools in 18 cities and communities nationwide.

Metropolitan Opera Radio on SIRIUS channel 78 is a subscription-based audio entertainment service broadcasting both an unprecedented number of live performances each week throughout the Met's entire season, as well as rare historical performances, newly restored and remastered, spanning the Met's 77-year broadcast history.

In addition to providing audio recordings through the new Met on Rhapsody on-demand service, the Met also presents free live audio streaming of performances on its website once every week during the opera season with support from RealNetworks(R).

The company's groundbreaking commissioning program in partnership with New York's Lincoln Center Theater (LCT), provides renowned composers and playwrights with the resources to create and develop new works at the Met and at Lincoln Center's Vivian Beaumont Theater. The Met's partnership with LCT is part of the company's larger initiative to commission new operas from contemporary composers, present modern masterpieces alongside the classic repertory, and provide a venue for artists to nurture their work.

The Met has launched several audience development initiatives such as the company's Open House Dress Rehearsals, which are free and open to the public; two are planned for the 2008-09 season with operas and dates to be announced. The Met also presents a free performance of the Verdi Requiem on September 18, in tribute to the late Luciano Pavarotti. Other company initiatives include the Arnold and Marie Schwartz Gallery Met which exhibits contemporary visual art; the immensely successful Agnes Varis and Karl Leichtman Rush Ticket program which provides deeply discounted orchestra seats two hours before curtain time; and an annual Holiday Series presentation for families. This season's special Holiday Presentation is Julie Taymor's production of Mozart's The Magic Flute, an abridged, English-language version of the opera which is given four special matinee performances and one holiday evening performance as a way for families to celebrate the holiday season.

About SIRIUS XM Radio

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Contact for SIRIUS XM Radio:

    Sal Resendez
    SIRIUS XM Radio
    646 313 2405