Matinee broadcasts of the Metropolitan Opera continue on Classical 90.5 at 11:00 a.m. this Saturday, February 15th, with a performance of Die Frau ohne Schatten by Richard Strauss, with a libretto by his long-time collaborator, the poet Hugo von Hofmannsthal. The performance will run approximately four hours.
Die Frau ohne Schatten (The Woman Without a Shadow) is the somewhat confusing fairy-tale story of a half-spirit Empress, married to a human, who needs to obtain a shadow to become fully human and to prevent her father, the ruler of the spirit world, from losing his power and herself from being recalled to the spiritual plane her father inhabits. Also at stake is the fate of the Empress's husband, the Emperor, who will be turned to stone in three days if she fails. With no options, the Empress is enticed by her scheming nurse to convince a human woman, a dyer's wife, to sell her shadow in return for the promise of riches and a handsome young lover. Fortunately, love and compassion prevail in a happy ending that reunites the Empress and Emperor, and the dyer and his wife.
Strauss's magical opera returns to the Met for the first time in a decade with Vladimir Jurowski conducting.