Esther B. O’Keeffe Speaker Series: Peter Gelb
Grand Opera: Past, Present and Future
At one of the largest performing arts institutions in the world, Gelb’s priorities have focused on talent, technology and revitalizing the repertory with new productions of both classic operas and modern masterpieces.
Peter Gelb’s career has followed a singular arc that began with his teenage years as an usher at the Metropolitan Opera and led to his appointment in August 2006 as the storied company’s 16th general manager. Now ending his 11th season at the helm of the Met, Gelb has overseen the launch of a number of initiatives aimed at revitalizing opera and connecting it to a wider audience. One of his fundamental goals has been to recruit the world’s great singers and theater directors to enhance the theatricality of the Met’s productions and complement the extraordinary musical standards established by Music Director Emeritus James Levine.
One of the most successful and trailblazing of his new initiatives is The Met: Live in HD, a Peabody and Emmy Award–winning series of live performance transmissions shown in high definition to select theaters in 70 countries, including the Four Arts, which was one of the first organizations to screen the telecasts. Similarly, SiriusXM launched Metropolitan Opera Radio, and the Met Opera On Demand streaming service, with more than 550 performances available with a subscription. The Met also presents free, live streaming of performances from its website once a week.
Gelb has the herculean challenge of overseeing both the artistic and the administrative aspects of one of the largest performing arts institutions in the world, yet his leadership continues to raise global awareness of opera, and inspires other institutions throughout the world.
The Esther B. O’Keeffe Speaker Series features notable speakers from the fields of politics, culture and the media. Lectures take place January through March on Tuesdays at 3 p.m. Book signings, when offered, are held in the O’Keeffe Gallery Building following the lecture, and are available to the public at no charge.
General Seating: $35
No charge to Four Arts Members
Tickets go on sale at 2:30 p.m. on the day of the event.