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As in most recent years, Munich’s traditional summer Opera Festival in 2018 will offer an undeniable richness of six major performances within a compact eight-night period. Instead of Munich’s new RING, we are excited by the superlative casts in a varied repertory of other operas, especially the combination of Nina Stemme and Jonas Kaufmann in Parsifal, this writer’s favorite soprano Anja Harteros for two evenings, and Angela Gheorghiu as Tosca.

In chronological order, the operas on our program will be Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore, Richard Wagner’s Parsifal, Giacomo Puccini’s Tosca, and Richard’ Strauss’s Arabella. A fifth vocal performance will be the sold-out Recital by Munich’s beloved ‘prima donna assoluta’, Anja Harteros. And a change of pace will be an orchestral concert by the Munich Philharmonic, with Krzysztof Urbanski conducting works by Antonin Dvorak and Dmitry Shostakovich.

Munich’s Festival always boasts a sensational roster of the world’s leading singers. The 20187 casts will include the MET’s current stars Pretty Yende and Vittorio Grigolo in the ‘bel canto’ arias and duets of ‘L’Elisir’; a peerless roster of Wagnerians Nina Stemme, Jonas Kaufmann, Christian Gerhaher and René Pape for the new production of ‘Parsifal’; the glamorous Romanian diva Angela Gheorghiu in the challenging title role of ‘Tosca’, with Joseph Calleja and Thomas Hampson as Cavaradossi and Scarpia; and Anja Harteros cast as the ideal interpreter of Richard Strauss/Hugo von Hoffmansthal’s ‘Arabella’ opposite Michael Volle as Mandryka.

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Munich’s Music Dirctor is now Kyrill Petrenko, who has also been announced as the next leader of the prestigious Berlin Philharmonic. The Russian maestro will be on the podium for the new ‘Parsifal’. All of the operas, as well as the Harteros Recital, will be performed in the National Theater, home of the Bavarian State Opera.

Because Strauss’s ‘Arabella’ is being performed this year, our full-day excursion to visit the Richard Strauss Villa in Garmish-Partenkirchen will be a unique addition to our schedule.

Accommodations for a full eight nights at the deluxe Vier Jahreszeiten (‘Four Seasons’) Hotel, with a grand European buffet breakfast included. The Vier Jahreszeiten ranks as Munich’s finest, offering a wide variety of services in an old-fashioned Bavarian atmosphere. The hotel’s cuisine is renowned throughout Europe, and an indoor pool is situated on the penthouse floor with an open balcony for sunbathing. The ideal location is only two blocks from the opera house and a short walk from the central Marienplatz shopping area. For many reasons, the Vier Jahreszeiten remains everyone’s first choice in Munich.

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Prices Per Person (Air Fare not Included)

Double Occupancy: $6,850
Single Occupancy: $7,830