'The Met: Live in HD' continues second season in Columbia

Friday, October 10, 2008 | 6:00 a.m. CDT

COLUMBIA —While most opera spectators see the show from a single view, Columbia opera fans can see 13 angles of a Metropolitan Opera performance without leaving their seats in the Goodrich Forum 8 theater.

"The Met: Live in HD" series continues its second year in Columbia with the performance of "Salome" on Saturday. It is the third season Metropolitan Opera shows have been broadcast live to national and international movie theaters.

If you go to the Met: Live in HD "Salome"

WHAT: The Met: Live in HD presents "Salome"

WHERE: Goodrich Forum 8 Theater, 1209 Forum Katy Parkway

WHEN: Noon Saturday

ADMISSION: Adult $22, senior $20, student $18, children $15

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The season premiered Sept. 22 with "Opening Night Gala," a compilation of single acts from Verdi's "La Traviata," Massenet's "Manon" and Richard Strauss's "Capriccio." This is the first year a gala has been broadcast.

The Met partners with National CineMedia Fathom to bring 11 live and 10 encore events to theaters across the country. The Met increased the number of cameras used to film the events this year to 13 from last year's 10 to continue to generate the feeling of being at the performance in person.

"(We're broadcasting) more productions than last year and hope to bring a broader selection of operas to fans and families," said Dan Diamond, vice president of NCM Fathom.

Through the "Live in HD" series, not only do opera fans have the opportunity to see a New York City production outside of the city, they are also taken backstage to gain unique insight into the show. During the opera's intermission, theater viewers follow the cameras backstage for special interviews with the actors.

In "Salome," King Herod's stepdaughter, Salome, is fascinated by the physical appearance of the prophet Jochanaan. Herod's attention toward Salome grows. After she refuses his offers of food and wine, Herod later asks Salome to dance for him. Salome initially refuses, but when Herod offers to give her anything she desires, she agrees.

She seductively dances for the king and asks for her reward: Jochanaan's head on a platter. Herod offers alternative rewards but finally agrees. When Jochanaan’s head is presented to Salome, she kisses his lips as if he were still living. Disgusted by this, the king orders Salome killed.

Diamond said he did not have estimates for Columbia's 2007-2008 season attendance, but said "it was a popular event in the area for the first year and (we) hope the second year gains momentum." He estimated overall national attendance at 500,000.

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