Opera on WRTI

Saturday, 1 to 5 pm

Join us every Saturday throughout the year for opera broadcasts from some of the most well-known and beloved opera companies in America. The list includes live broadcasts of The Metropolitan Opera's entire Saturday Matinee season, and recorded performances—distributed by WFMT in Chicago—from recent seasons of Lyric Opera of Chicago, LA Opera, Houston Grand Opera, and the San Francisco Opera. You'll also hear recorded opera broadcasts of the Academy of Vocal Arts (AVA) on selected Sundays, and some other surprises throughout the year!

Coming up...


Saturday, October 22, 1 to 3:15 pm
Leoš Janáček: Jenůfa

Jenůfa: Malin Byström
Kostelnička: Karita Mattila
Laca Klemeň: William Burden
Steva Buryja: Scott Quinn

Synopsis and more!


Saturday, October 29, 1 to 3:30 pm
Stephen Sondheim: Sweeney Todd
Libretto: Hugh Wheeler

Sweeney Todd: Greer Grimsley
Mrs. Lovett: Luretta Bybee
Anthony Hope: Harry Greenleaf
Johanna: Emily Pogorelc
Tobias Ragg: Nicholas Nestorak
Judge Turpin: Peter Volpe
Beggar Woman: Patricia Schuman
Adolfo Pirelli: Christopher Bozeka
Beadle Bamford: Bille Bruley

Contribute here to support opera on WRTI throughout the year!

Ways to Connect

You don't often hear "football" and "bel canto" in the same sentence. How about the same opera?

Join us at 12 noon on Saturday (an hour earlier than usual) for Hector Berlioz's monumental and epic French grand opera THE TROJANS, with stars Susan Graham, Bryan Hymel, Anna Caterina Antonacci, Michaela Martens and Sasha Cooke, conducted by Donald Runnicles.

Philadelphia tenor Stephen Costello has survived tonsil surgery, reflux, and most recently, the Metropolitan Opera's super-glitzy, Las Vegas-style production of Rigoletto. The morning after opening night, he took stock of it all with The Philadelphia Inquirer's David Patrick Stearns.

In this world-premiere production, a mother and daughter fight for survival against the backdrop of Italy at war. Based on the 1958 novel La Ciociara, with a score by Marco Tutino, this emotional drama evokes human resilience in the face of extreme destruction and devastation during World War II.

Opera Philadelphia is celebrating its 40th birthday by announcing the boldest change of its history. The company has just unveiled the creation of an annual season-opening opera festival - Festival O - premiering in September of 2017 with O17. It's modeled after two highly successful American festivals - Sundance in Park City, Utah and Spoleto in Charleston, SC. The Philadelphia Inquirer's David Patrick Stearns reports.

When an aspiring poet falls in love with a fragile seamstress, their intense passion is only matched by their youthful idealism. Can their tender relationship survive the cruelties of life?

It was 30 years ago today that a single American hostage was killed by terrorists during the hijacking of a cruise ship by pro-Palestinian terrorists in the Mediterranean Sea. Leon Klinghoffer's death was the inspiration for a controversial opera, The Death of Klinghoffer, composed by John Adams, with a libretto by Alice Goodman and directed by Peter Sellars.

Thanks to her open heart and determination, Cinderella triumphs over her mean-spirited relatives in Rossini’s sparkling version of the story. Karine Deshayes, lauded for her "emotional depth and vibrant, beautiful sound" (The New York Times), makes her San Francisco Opera debut in the beloved fairy tale about a gentle but courageous servant girl who catches the eye of a handsome prince.

Join us on Saturday, October 3rd from 1 to 5 pm for Giacomo Puccini's very unique IL TRITTICO, which is a collection of three one-act operas, Il tabarro, Suor Angelica, and Gianni Schicchi, perfomed together the way Puccini intended them to be presented. The work received its world premiere at the Metropolitan Opera in 1918. Lorin Maazel conducts this recording from 1979.

A Swedish king laughs off a fortune-teller’s warning of a plot against his life. But when his closest aide discovers the monarch is having an affair with his wife, the threat of assassination becomes real. This tuneful Verdi masterpiece, “one of the composer’s most hot-blooded and vividly crafted tales” (San Francisco Chronicle), has an outstanding cast led by the splendidly lyrical Ramón Vargas and the riveting Dolora Zajick.