The Matthew Bucksbaum Family Lyric Opera Broadcasts of the 2011/12 Lyric Opera of Chicago season continue on Classical 90.5 this Saturday, June 9, at noon with a performance of Ariadne auf Naxos by Richard Strauss, with a libretto in German by Hugo von Hofmannsthal. The performance will run approximately three hours.

Vienna’s richest man is planning an incredible party. First, guests will enjoy a serious opera (the Prima Donna plays Ariadne, who’s ready to die on the island of Naxos because her lover’s jilted her). Then comes a ribald comedy, starring saucy Zerbinetta (who's an expert flirt). Finally, there’s to be a pyrotechnic display. But the host suddenly decides both productions must take place simultaneously so the fireworks can start promptly at nine. The Composer is aghast and the Prima Donna’s horrified. Then watch what happens when Zerbinetta gets into the act and determines that Ariadne’s “tragedy” shouldn’t end unhappily after all.

This is Strauss à la Rosenkavalier, with sparkling, luscious music that wraps itself around a witty comedy. Sir Andrew Davis conducts.

Prima Donna/Ariadne: Amber Wagner
Zerbinetta: Anna Christy
Composer: Alice Coote
Tenor/Bacchus: Brandon Jovanovich