Maestro James Levine Is Star of Metropolitan Opera Guild’s First “Met Legends” Event of New Season

Alice Tully Hall on Tuesday, September 15

Maestro James Levine, Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, is the subject of the Metropolitan Opera Guild’s first public event of the new season. “Met Legends: James Levine” takes place at New York ’s Alice Tully Hall on Tuesday, September 15 at 7:30 pm. The “Maestro of the Met” himself will be the guest of honor, on stage with the Guild’s Paul Gruber to watch rare video clips and to discuss his life and unrivaled career. Exclusive video footage will be shown, including a new video biography of the Maestro that incorporates rare footage of the young James Levine with his family.

Since his Met debut, conducting Puccini’s Tosca in 1971, Maestro Levine has been the Metropolitan Opera’s indefatigable artistic mainstay – not only introducing scores of new singers, directors, designers, composers, and repertoire to the Met audience, but developing the Met orchestra into one of the foremost ensembles in the world. As a conductor, he inaugurated the “Live from the Met” telecasts on PBS, while building on the rich tradition of New York City ’s foremost performing arts institution. In his nearly four decades with the Met, James Levine has conducted close to 2,400 performances, including many on tours of the U.S. and abroad, besides Met Orchestra appearances at nearby Carnegie Hall – considerably more than any other conductor in the company’s 125-year history. An impressive circle of artists who have played important roles in Maestro Levine’s musical life will be on hand for “Met Legends: James Levine,” including Judith Blegen, Raymond Gniewek, Lynn Harrell, Marilyn Horne, Cornell MacNeil, Karita Mattila, James Morris, Itzhak Perlman, Roberta Peters, Renata Scotto, Dawn Upshaw, and Dolora Zajick (list in formation). The earlier “Met Legend” events have been extraordinary and unforgettable evenings with Marilyn Horne and with Teresa Stratas.

This is the first of four special, star-studded public events presented by the Metropolitan Opera Guild this season, as an important part of its annual schedule of programs that both celebrate the art form and provide substantial financial support for the organization’s groundbreaking opera education programs.

The Guild’s Paul Gruber, producer of this and many other Guild events, has assembled the film clips, audio and video excerpts, photographs, questions to ask Maestro Levine in the onstage interview, and everything else that the audience will see and hear on September 15 at Alice Tully Hall. He comments: “It’s an enormous honor for the Guild to be able to celebrate the Maestro in this fashion. If ever there was a living Met Legend, it is James Levine!”

A few seats to the Pre-Performance Dinner with the Artists’ Circle (the list of distinguished attendees is still growing) are still available for $600. This includes dinner, premium seating for the performance, and the reception. Program-only tickets are $75 each (Guild member price $45). Special tickets at $150 each include the artist’s reception after the event. Call (212) 769-7009, or buy tickets online at www.metguild.org.

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