on Oct 11, 2023 12:26 PM
Met Music Director Yannick Nézet-Séguin leads cast starring mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato as Sister Helen Prejean and bass-baritone Ryan McKinny as death-row inmate Joseph De Rocher
Live in HD transmission to include an intermission feature of associated work with men at Sing Sing Correctional Facility, featuring the real-life Sister Helen Prejean and members of the cast
Denver (October 11, 2023)—The Metropolitan Opera opens its 2023–24 Live in HD season with Jake Heggie’s masterpiece Dead Man Walking on Saturday, October 21, at 12:55PM ET—the first of three works from recent years to be presented live in cinemas this season through Fathom Events. Based on Sister Helen Prejean’s memoir, which also inspired the 1995 Oscar-winning film, the story follows Sister Helen’s fight for the soul of a condemned murderer on death row. With a libretto by the late Tony and Emmy Award winner Terrence McNally, Dead Man Walking is the most widely performed new opera of the last two decades.
Fathom Events will also present encores of Dead Man Walking on Wednesday, October 25, at 1:00PM and 6:30PM, local time.
Tickets for Dead Man Walking are on sale through the Fathom Events website and participating theater box offices. For a complete list of theater locations, visit fathomevents.com (participating theaters are subject to change).
Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the Met’s Jeanette Lerman-Neubauer Music Director, leads the star-studded cast, including Grammy Award–winning mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato as Sister Helen; bass-baritone Ryan McKinny as death-row inmate Joseph De Rocher; soprano Latonia Moore as Sister Rose; and mezzo-soprano Susan Graham, who originated the role of Sister Helen in the opera’s 2000 premiere, as De Rocher’s mother.
Directed by Tony Award–winning director Ivo van Hove, Dead Man Walking’s creative team also includes set and lighting designer Jan Versweyveld, costume designer An D’Huys, projection designer Christopher Ash, and sound designer Tom Gibbons in his Met debut.
Gary Halvorson will direct the Live in HD presentation for cinemas, with Grammy Award–winning musician, MacArthur recipient, and Pulitzer Prize winner Rhiannon Giddens serving as host. She will provide exclusive behind-the-scenes access and lead interviews with the cast and creative team during intermission.
The transmission will also include an intermission feature filmed at Sing Sing Correctional Facility. Led by Sister Helen and DiDonato and in association with Carnegie Hall’s Musical Connections program, members of the opera’s cast and music staff, together with some of the resident men at Sing Sing, rehearsed and presented an abridged concert version of “Dead Man Walking” at the correctional facility.
The Stars of Dead Man Walking
Yannick Nézet-Séguin, conductor; Montreal, Canada
Joyce DiDonato, Sister Helen Prejean; Kansas City, Kansas
Ryan McKinny, Joseph De Rocher; Los Angeles, California
Latonia Moore, Sister Rose; Houston, Texas
Susan Graham, Mrs. Patrick De Rocher; Roswell, New Mexico
“WILD APPLAUSE AND STANDING OVATIONS… Dead Man Walking makes its arresting Met debut … The finest and most engaged work I’ve ever seen or heard from Joyce DiDonato … Ryan McKinny sang the role of De Rocher with figurative and literal muscular force … Revelatory singing … Commandingly conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin.” —The Washington Post
“Death-row drama brings audience to tears … DiDonato is lustrous … Susan Graham is deeply moving. The orchestra’s playing is flowing and passionate. ****” —Financial Times
“A brilliant premiere … With its emotional depth and powerful storytelling, the haunting new production left the audience spellbound.” —Vogue
“Soaring music … powerful feelings … A smartly airy production at the Met by Ivo van Hove … Charismatic stars in DiDonato and McKinny, and lavish playing from the orchestra … Affecting.” —The New York Times
“Jake Heggie’s score triumphed … Nézet-Séguin conducted with characteristic fervor … strong vocal writing, a balanced and well-paced story and a timely set of ethical questions.” —Observer
“A cutting edge and visceral production” —NY1
“A deeply human story about truth, forgiveness and the possibility of redemption … I found myself overcome by the universal redemptive hope at the core of the opera.”
“New work is the future of opera. The Met is going all in.” —The Wall Street Journal
Click here and enter the password MetOpera2020 for photos of Dead Man Walking.
Content Advisory: Dead Man Walking contains a depiction of a rape and murder, as well as other adult themes and strong language.
For further details on Dead Man Walking, please click here.
The 2023–24 Live in HD season continues with X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X (live on November 18, with encores on November 29), Florencia en el Amazonas (live on December 9, with encores on December 13), Nabucco (live on January 6, with encores on January 10), Carmen (live on January 27, with encores on January 31), La Forza del Destino (live on March 9, with encores on March 13), Roméo et Juliette (live on March 23, with encores on March 27), La Rondine (live on April 20, with encores on April 24), and Madama Butterfly (live on May 11, with encores on May 15). All performances will be Saturday matinees transmitted live from the Met stage. An encore screening of Mozart’s The Magic Flute from 2006 will also be presented in select cinemas on December 2.
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The Met: Live in HD series is made possible by a generous grant from its founding sponsor, the Neubauer Family Foundation. Digital support of The Met: Live in HD is provided by Bloomberg Philanthropies. The Met: Live in HD series is supported by Rolex.