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The Metropolitan Opera 50th Anniversary Gala

Lincoln Center, New York


An exhilarating all-star gala

On September 16, 1966, the Metropolitan Opera opened its doors for the first time in a new home at Lincoln Center, with the world premiere of Samuel Barber’s Antony and Cleopatra, starring Leontyne Price and Justino Díaz. The New York Times declared the opening of the new opera house a “crescendo of splendor,” and a new era of theatrical possibility was born.

Fifty years later, the Met celebrated its golden anniversary in its current home with a special gala featuring some of the greatest artists in opera, performing a mix of repertory that both looked back at great moments from the past five decades and ahead to future seasons. Selections were heard from such operas as Porgy and Bess, Samson et Dalila, Les Troyens, I Lombardi, and, for the first time since the house opened, Antony and Cleopatra.

Working with director Julian Crouch, 59 Productions designed the projections for an unforgettable operatic celebration of this important milestone.

Opened 2017

Metropolitan Opera House, Lincoln Center, New York

Uncanny projected evocations of classic productions
A series of virtual sets and projections…conjured up, with love and whimsy, a slew of Met productions from the recent and distant past.
Who needs carpenters and stagehands when digital wizardry and projected light can instantaneously conjure an entire 3-D world onstage? A tenor popped onstage for a quick aria, and the sets materialized around him, dissolved, and recomposed for the next number. The designers, Julian Crouch and 59 Productions, paid sly homage to the company’s architecture, sprinkling its elements into the parade of digital backdrops.


Marco Armiliato
James Levine
Yannick Nézet-Séguin

Set Designer
Julian Crouch

Projection Design
59 Productions

Costume Designer
Kevin Pollard

Lighting Designer
Brian MacDevitt

Chorus Master
Donald Palumbo

59 Team

Project Directors
Mark Grimmer, Leo Warner

Technical Director
Benjamin Pearcy

Associate Project Director
Akhila Krishnan

Ollie Hester

Nick Corrigan, Jarek Radecki, Nicol Scott, Edd Stockton, Lawrence Watson

Zach Peletz

Brad Peterson

Dale Croft