Live at the Met series to end season with Giulio Cesare

The 1891 Fredonia Opera House concludes its 2012-13 season of Live at the Met high definition opera broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera with George Frideric Handel’s Baroque masterpiece Giulio Cesare (Julius Caesar) Saturday at noon.

“This week’s final offering in the 2012-13 Live at the Met season is Handel’s powerful Giulio Cesare,” said Opera House Executive Director Rick Davis. “The work is considered by many to be Handel’s finest Italian opera, possibly even the best in the history of opera seria. It is admired for its superb vocal writing, its dramatic impact, and its deft orchestral arrangements.”

In the Met’s current production, the opera that conquered London in Handel’s time is given an inventive staging by acclaimed Director David McVicar. The world’s leading countertenor, David Daniels, sings the title role opposite Natalie Dessay as an irresistibly exotic Cleopatra. Baroque specialist Harry Bicket conducts.

The Huffington Post calls is “a thrilling operatic experience that is a feast for the eyes and ears.”

Classical Review calls it “a stunning production of one of Handel’s most magnificent works so kaleidoscopically imaginative that repeated viewings are mandatory an unforgettable, visionary theatrical event.”

The production runs four hours, 25 minutes, says Davis. “There are two 25-minute intermissions,” he adds, “during which snacks and beverages will be available for purchase on the second floor of Village Hall.” No food or beverage is allowed inside the theatre.

Live at the Met opera broadcasts are made possible by Dr. James M. and Marcia Merrins, who funded the purchase of the satellite transmission and projection equipment used in the series. Additional support comes from Bob and Shirley Coon, Susan Dilks, Steve and Mary Rees and DFT Communications.

Tickets to Giulio Cesare are $20 ($18 for Opera House and Met members, $15 for students) and are available in advance by calling or visiting the Box Office at 679-1891 Tuesday to Friday, 1-5 p.m. They also may be purchased online anytime at

Chautauqua County’s only performing arts center presenting its own programming year-round, the 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported not-for-profit organization located in Village Hall in downtown Fredonia.

For a complete schedule of events, visit