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Wednesday, December 10 at 8 p.m. Great Performances presents Domingo, Netrebko & Villazón: Three Stars in Vienna

(Rochester, NY) The intoxicating strains of Franz Lehar and other masters of the operetta and zarzuela stage dominate Great Performances' Domingo, Netrebko & Villazón: Three Stars in Vienna, airing Wednesday, December 10 at 8 p.m. on WXXI-TV 21 (cable 11) and WXXI-HD (cable 1011 and DT 21.1), an icon-studded concert gala from the Imperial Park of Vienna’s Schönbrunn Summer Palace. Tenors Plácido Domingo and Rolando Villazón join soprano Anna Netrebko in the evening of highlights from such favorite works as The Merry Widow, Land of Smiles, and El Gato Montes.

The broadcast is led by noted French conductor Bertrand de Billy, directing the Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra.

From its opening vocal salvo, Domingo’s thrilling account of Lehar’s Gern hab ich die Frau’n gekuesst from Paganini, through Netrebko’s swirling Gypsy rendition of Heia in den Bergen (from Emmerich Kálmán’s Die Csárdásfürstin) to Villazón’s heart-breaking Dein ist mein ganzes Herz (Lehar’s Land of Smiles), the program is a welcome reminder of the glittering lost world of operetta.

The genre (first cousin to the zarzuela of Spain) is a precursor to today’s modern musical and once dominated the world’s stages, thanks to “light music” composers like Lehar, Johann Strauss Jr., and Léo Delibes. Domingo, Netrebko & Villazón: Three Stars in Vienna offers a rare opportunity to re-examine some of their gems.

Domingo, Netrebko & Villazón: Three Stars in Vienna was recorded in the Austrian capital on June 27, 2008.

For more information, visit www.pbs.org/wnet/gperf.

Pictured: Tenors Plácido Domingo (left) and Rolando Villazón (center) join soprano Anna Netrebko (right).
Photo Credit: ORF/Ali Schafler

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