Ramon Vargas

What's the longest-running continuous classical radio series in American broadcast history? The Metropolitan Opera's Saturday matinee broadcasts, launched in 1931! The 85th season of live Saturday broadcasts begins on December 5th with Puccini's LA BOHEME, followed by Verdi's RIGOLETTO on December 12th.

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.

This week it's Arrigo Boito’s resplendent retelling of Goethe’s Faust, a monumental work of "choral grandeur and melodic richness" (The New York Times) recorded live at the famous War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco in 2013.

This powerful 2010 production of DON CARLO features a strong cast for Verdi’s epic vision of the Spanish Inquisition. Ramón Vargas sings the title role, joined by Barbara Frittoli, Anna Smirnova, Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Ferruccio Furlanetto, and Eric Halfvarson. Lorin Maazel conducts.