A deluge of fascinating characters, an impressive operatic score with the unmistakable touch of Puccini himself, and compelling set design by the renowned Michael Levine, all come together to make Madama Butterfly one of the most stimulating experiences this season at the MET Opera!
Why You Should Watch Madama Butterfly
Based on the short story Madame Butterfly authored by John Luther Long, Madama Butterfly is an intriguing exploration of cultural values and true love. The ideas of honour and duty prevalent in 19th Century Japan are contrasted with the American ideals of freedom and transience. Although the original version of the opera, which featured at La Scala in Milan, had some of the most popular singers of the time, it was not well received. Shortly after, Puccini revised the opera and split it into the three acts we see today, making it a staple performance for operas around the world.
In this brilliant production of Madama Butterfly, Puccini veteran Hui He shares the role of Cio-Cio-San with Ana Maria Martinez. The show also features fascinating puppetry by Blind Summit Theatre. The gorgeous sets and authentic costumes designed by Michel Levine and Han Feng respectively take audiences all the way back to 19th century Japan. This is an excellent reenactment that you simply cannot miss this season at the MET Opera!
Lieutenant Franklin Pinkerton from the US Navy intends to inspect a house that overlooks the harbour of Nagasaki. A marriage broker named Goro leases the house along with its three servants and Geisha wife to Pinkerton for a whopping 999 years with monthly renewals. When Sharpless, the American consul, implores Pinkerton to reconsider his decision to marry Cio-Cio-San, the Geisha of the house, the young lieutenant brushes it off saying that he simply wishes to have a few transient and exotic experiences as a ‘fearless Yankee’. He marries the 15-year-old Cio-Cio-San. In her haste to prove that she is a worthy wife, Cio-Cio-San renounces her old religion and declares that she is a Christian, much to the disappointment of her family.
In the second act, Cio-Cio-San has a son, and she awaits the return of her husband. Pinkerton has left promising that he will return soon. She rejects all marriage offers stating that she already has a husband who loves her. The act ends with a cannon shot that announces the arrival of Pinkerton’s ship.
Madama Butterfly (Cio-Cio-San) and her servant Suzuki decorate the house with fresh flowers and eagerly wait for Pinkerton to show up at the doorstep. Unfortunately, Pinkerton never intended to stay with Butterfly, and has married an American woman named Kate. When Madama Butterfly sees Kate, she quickly grasps the situation. She blindfolds her child and bids him goodbye as she stabs herself, choosing to die in honour instead of living in shame.
Lovers of Musicals | Fans of Guiseppe Verdi | Lovers of Romantic Tragedies
“The score simply flows, with audience and performers swept along in the touching tragedy.”
- Opera Wire
Know Before You Go
Suitable for ages 8 and up.
The MET Opera has a seating capacity of 3,800.
Strictly prohibited. If you'd like to grab a meal before or after the show, check out our guide to the 30 Best Restaurants in the Theater District.
Smart and casual wear is recommended. Keep in mind, the theatre is air conditioned throughout the year and can get a bit chilly.
Photo and video recording are not allowed during the show.
Strict Cancellation Policy
This experience cannot be cancelled, rescheduled, or amended.
Please display your e-ticket at the theatre box office to gain entry.
Metropolitan Opera House, 30 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY 10023, USA
Get off at 66 St - Lincoln Center Subway Station using lines 1 or 2. The Metropolitan Opera House is just a 5-minute walk from here.
Get off at Broadway/W 64 St using buses M5 or M7 or at Broadway/W 63 St using bus M104. The theatre is located across the street to the left. Alternatively, get off at Amsterdam Av/W 62 St using bus M11. The theatre is located on the right.
The ticket is valid only for the exact date and time you have opted for.