Tony-winning director Michael Mayer will helm a new production of Verdi's Aida to open The Metropolitan Opera's 2024-2025 season, according to Observer.
The production had previously been announced to open the company's 2020 season, but was postponed due to the pandemic. The Met brought back its Sonja Frisell-directed staging, which debuted in 1988, this fall, with Latonia Moore and Michelle Bradley sharing the title role over performances scheduled through April 2023. Mayer's current Broadway productions, Funny Girl and the recently opened A Beautiful Noise, The Neil Diamond Musical, may have prevented his take on the classic opera from premiering sooner.
The production was initially announced as a co-production between The Met and Moscow’s Bolshoi Theatre. Following the New York institution's cutting of ties with Putin-linked Russian organizations in the wake of the war in Ukraine, it is unlikely that the companies will co-present the staging when it makes its long-awaited premiere in 2024.
Aida will be Mayer's third production with The Met, following earlier stagings of Rigoletto and La Traviata. He is a Tony winner for directing the 2007 original Broadway production of Spring Awakening, and has also helmed Thoroughly Modern Millie, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Head Over Heels, and American Idiot for the Main Stem.
With a libretto by Antonio Ghislanzoni and music by Giuseppe Verdi, Aida centers on an Ethiopian princess held captive in ancient Egypt and the Egyptian general with whom she falls in love. The work premiered in 1871, and served as the inspiration behind Elton John and Tim Rice's 2000 musical of the same name.
Look at production photos of Mayer's La Traviata: