The Metropolitan Opera Launches State-of-the-Art New iPad App

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“Met Opera On Demand” allows unlimited streaming of the Met’s popular Live in HD programs, as well as hundreds of other audio and video performances; new content, both current and historic, will be added monthly 44 video transmissions from the award-winning Live in HD series available at launch

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The Metropolitan Opera has released “Met Opera on Demand,” a new app for the iPad that allows unlimited streaming access to video transmissions from the company’s award-winning Live in HD series, plus hundreds of historic TV and radio broadcasts. The free app, available for download from the App Store™, will give opera lovers around the world mobile access to high-quality audio and video streams of hundreds of performances from the Met’s 81-year broadcast history. New content will be added monthly, including recent Live in HD transmissions featuring the biggest stars of today’s opera world. Live in HD titles will be added to the service two to three months after their premiere in movie theaters. A subscription is required to access streaming content, with plans beginning at $14.99 a month.

“We want opera to be as widely available as technology permits,” said the Met’s General Manager Peter Gelb. “With its superb video and audio quality, our iPad app should appeal to neophytes as well as the aficionados who would like to relive every expertly delivered high C.”

Forty-four selections will initially be available from the company’s groundbreaking Live in HD series, which uses multiple cameras, advanced technology, and innovative direction to capture the excitement and power of live opera. The series’ popular intermission features, which take viewers behind the scenes for exclusive interviews with the stars of each production, are included with each title. Productions currently available for streaming on Met Opera on Demand include last season’s comedic hit Le Comte Ory, starring Juan Diego Flórez, Diana Damrau, and Joyce DiDonato; this season’s opening-night production, Anna Bolena, with star soprano Anna Netrebko in the tour-de-force title role; and Michael Grandage’s elegant new production of Don Giovanni, seen in movie theaters in October 2011.

The streaming service also allows users access to historic telecasts featuring stars like Luciano Pavarotti, Plácido Domingo, Joan Sutherland, and Leontyne Price. The video library includes historic performances, such as a 1979 production of Don Pasquale starring Beverly Sills or a starry 1998 Le Nozze di Figaro telecast starring Renée Fleming, Cecilia Bartoli, and Bryn Terfel. All videos include English subtitles and many offer titles in French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. The Met Opera on Demand app includes social sharing capabilities for Facebook and Twitter and provides users with the ability to create favorites lists.

More than 250 audio performances from Met history are available through the Met Opera on Demand app. Digitally remastered audio streams allow users to immerse themselves completely in historic nights at the Met, beginning with a 1936 performance of Wagner’s Götterdämmerung starring Lauritz Melchior. The archive offers outstanding live recordings of the greatest opera singers of the last century, including Jussi Björling, Maria Callas, Montserrat Caballé, Franco Corelli, Birgit Nilsson, Jessye Norman, Rosa Ponselle, Eleanor Steber, Risë Stevens, and Richard Tucker, in some of their most acclaimed Met performances.

New content will be added to Met Opera on Demand each month. Subscribers with the iPad app may also stream content on a personal computer for no additional charge. For more information, including an online catalogue of offerings and details on subscription packages, please visit http://www.metoperaondemand.org.

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Alison Hendrie
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