Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Wiener Staatsoper Launches Live Streams with Rosenkavalier

The Vienna State Opera announced its first live streaming event: Der Rosenkavalier with Renée Fleming as the Marschallin, Sophie Koch as Octavian, Mojca Erdmann as Sophie and Peter Rose as Ochs in Otto Schenk’s production, under the baton of Adam Fischer. 

It will cost 14 Euros to watch live; *5 Euros for an on-demand version (viewable for 7 days). It's too bad it's not free, but it's totally understandable why not. I do appreciate their saying, 
... the artists will receive a fair share of the revenue of each stream." 

From all the technical descriptions, it sounds like it will be worth it: 
Viewers at home will be able to choose between two perspectives at any time: an overall view of the stage and a live-edited film of the opera or ballet performance.

And there will be other extras, too. There’s a nifty information video (in German only) with more technical details. 

They also are taking into account that many of us opera fans are not operating on Viennese time: 
In Vienna the live streams will be transmitted live at the starting time, and then time zone delayed in order to ensure that the opera or ballet has an acceptable starting time for viewers around the world. 

This sounds good in theory, but then I wonder if I might just as well wait and get it on-demand for 5 Euros instead of time-delayed for 14. 

*On the other hand, Intermezzo points out that it’s not entirely clear if the live streams will actually be placed in the on-demand section, or if the on-demand stuff will be older archives, but I inferred that the new streams will show up for on-demand viewing (however, that could be wishful thinking on my part).

Speaking of on demand, Wagner's Die Feen (adapted for performance in the A1 children’s opera tent) is already available. There’ll be a few weeks’ gap after the Rosenkavalier transmission, then the Staatsoper's video/audio folks will be super busy right up to the start of the New Year. Here is the schedule for the rest of 2013:

October 27           Richard Strauss Der Rosenkavalier 
November 27       Mozart Die Zauberflöte
December 13        Wagner Tristan und Isolde 
December 27        Rossini La Cenerentola 
December 28        Tchaikovsky The Nutcracker (Choreography Rudolf Nureyev) 
December 29        Beethoven Fidelio 
December 31        Johann Strauss Die Fledermaus 

On a slightly unrelated note, the Staatsoper website is both attractive and informative, but I find the gray type on a beige background rather difficult to read. Maybe I’m just getting old.


  1. Minus Ms. Erdmann, it sounds like a good time - I'd certainly cough up the 5 euros.

    1. Ditto. I hate to say anything negative about any singer -- there are plenty of others willing and eager to do so.

      BUT, I have yet to enjoy ME singing ANYthing. On the other hand, there must be people who admire her work. She doesn't seem to be running out of high-profile gigs.

  2. I didn't understand that about the time of the webcast. So is the time it says it will start the time to watch in any time zone? I had assumed I would just have to watch it earlier, although I don't know about 14 euros. The streams are not always reliable. I would not mind paying if there were a choice of trying again if it didn't work the first time. Even on, which I subscribe too, I sometimes get drop outs.

    1. It IS confusing; and I agree with you about the 14 euros -- not a bad price but if you lose the stream, it's 14 euros down the drain!


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