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Live opera on the silver screen

Publishing & Media

Starting this season, The Metropolitan Opera is going to the movies. The Met is broadcasting six Saturday matinees to movie theatres around the Northern Hemisphere, live from New York. Audiences are treated to high-definition video and surround sound, excellent sight lines and comfortable seating, all for a bargain price (around USD 18 for the ‘decentralized’ version, vs. USD 80-375 for the real deal). Larger than life close-ups of performers and natural ambient stage sounds combine to create an intimate experience, and since the broadcasts are live, they retain a sense of occasion and exclusivity. Tickets for the Met’s broadcasts, shown in over 150 cinemas in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Japan, are almost all sold out. Close to 30,000 opera lovers flocked to movie theatres to see Mozart’s Magic Flute. The first season of Movies at the Met continues for another three performances: Eugene Onegin on February 24th, Il Barbiere di Siviglia on March 24th and Il Trittico on April 28th. It’s a great way for ‘high-culture’ institutions like the Met to reach cities that don’t have their own opera houses, and also to tap into a wider and potentially younger audience. The same concept would work for everything from exclusive jazz concerts to star-studded plays with limited runs. Trysumers—transient, experienced consumers who are becoming more daring in what they consume—are willing to take on a wide range of new cultural experiences, especially from the comfort of their local multiplex. One to study if you’re in the live entertainment business!

Website: www.metoperafamily.org

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