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Metropolitan Opera: Billy Budd

BILLY BUDD scene_1953a.jpg
Ken Howard/Met Opera
A scene from Britten's Billy Budd.

The 2020-21 Metropolitan Opera Radio Broadcast season concludes with a modern classic: Billy Budd, Benjamin Britten’s gripping drama of good and evil on the high seas, in a performance from 1997.

Baritone Dwayne Croft starred in the title role as the pure-hearted young sailor falsely accused of mutiny. In one of his signature roles, bass-baritone James Morris sang the Master-at-Arms Claggart, whose intense hatred is aroused by Billy’s goodness and beauty. Tenor Philip Langridge was Captain Vere, who must choose between the law or a greater truth.

Steuart Bedford led the Met Orchestra and the men of the Met Chorus along with an extraordinary ensemble cast in Britten’s evocative score.

Billy Budd will be heard over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network at 12:00 p.m. ET on Saturday, June 5. Listen to it on Classical IPR.

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Nancy Deneen is the host of Music at Midday and Weekend Classical.