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Metropolitan Opera

The Metropolitan Opera was founded in 1883, with its first opera house built on Broadway and 39th Street by a group of wealthy businessmen who wanted their own theater.

In the company’s early years, the management changed course several times, first performing everything in Italian (even Carmen and Lohengrin), then everything in German (even Aida and Faust), before finally settling into a policy of performing most works in their original language, with some notable exceptions.

The Metropolitan Opera has always engaged many of the world’s most important artists: Christine Nilsson, Marcella Sembrich, Lilli Lehmann, Nellie Melba, Emma Calvé, De Reszke brothers, Jean and Edouard, Emma Eames, Lillian Nordica, Enrico Caruso, Geraldine Farrar, Rosa Ponselle, Lawrence Tibbett and more. Some of the great conductors have helped shape the Met: Anton Seidl, Arturo Toscanini, Gustav Mahler, Artur Bodanzky, Bruno Walter, George Szell, Fritz Reiner, and Dimitri Mitropoulos.
Opera stars Leontyne Price and Robert Merrill deliver an aria at topping-ouut ceremonies for the new Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center The $42.7 million, 14-story building, in the background, is the largest of five structures in the center and is scheduled for completion next year World Telegram & Sun photo by Phil Stanziola
1857
1857
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1999
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1999
959 Media in collectionpage 6 of 10
Caruso & wife

Caruso & wife

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Romaine

Romaine

Photograph shows soprano opera singer Margaret Romaine (Margaret Tout Browning) who sang with the Metropolitan Opera, in a kitchen. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from unverified data provided by ... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows soprano opera singer and film actress, Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: Geo... more

Edw. Ziegler

Edw. Ziegler

Photograph shows opera manager Edward Ziegler (1870-1947), who became the administrative secretary of the Metropolitan Opera Company in May 1916. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014).

Caruso

Caruso

Photograph shows opera singer Enrico Caruso (1873-1921) with his wife Dorothy Benjamin Caruso. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms par... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

John Brown

John Brown

Photograph shows John Brown (1881-1967), business comptroller of the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the ... more

Caruso & wife

Caruso & wife

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso & R. Bartelemy

Caruso & R. Bartelemy

Photograph shows opera singer Enrico Caruso (1873-1921) with composer and pianist Riccardo Barthelemy (Richard Barthélemy)(1869-1937). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014)

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

E. Caruso Jr., Caruso & wife, G. Setti

E. Caruso Jr., Caruso & wife, G. Setti

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

H. Weill [i.e. Weil]

H. Weill [i.e. Weil]

Photograph shows Hermann Wilhelm Weil (1876-1949), an opera singer at the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Bodansky

Bodansky

Photograph shows Artur Bodanzky (Bodzansky) (1877-1939), an Austrian-American conductor, looking at documents in a chest. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service... more

Reiss & family

Reiss & family

Photograph shows German tenor opera singer Albert Reiss (1870-1940) who performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City with his family including his wife and children. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 201... more

A. Scotti

A. Scotti

Photograph shows Italian opera singer Antonio Scotti (1866-1936) who sang with the New York Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the ne... more

Caruso Wedding Party

Caruso Wedding Party

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

E. Caruso

E. Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows American soprano opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: George Grant... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City, holding a camera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensi... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. On negative: "Hartsook Photo, SF, LA". Fred ... more

Rodolfo Caruso
E. Caruso Jr

E. Caruso Jr

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

H. Weill i.e. Weil

H. Weill i.e. Weil

Photograph shows Hermann Wilhelm Weil (1876-1949), an opera singer at the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part... more

De Segurola

De Segurola

Photograph shows Andrés Perelló de Segurola (1874-1953), a Spanish operatic bass singer who performed with the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2013) Title from data provided by the Bain New... more

May Peterson

May Peterson

Photograph show opera singer May Esther Peterson Thompson (1880-1952) who sang for the Metropolitan Opera Company. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Riccardo Martin

Riccardo Martin

Photograph shows American opera singer Riccardo Martin (born Hugh Whitfield Martin, 1874-1952). Martin debuted with the Metropolitan Opera in the role of Faust in 1907 and remained as lead tenor for the company... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

E. Caruso
Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows American soprano opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967).(Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: George Granth... more

Caruso & Philip Gordon

Caruso & Philip Gordon

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

E. Caruso
Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

McCormack & Guard

McCormack & Guard

Photograph shows Irish American tenor singer John McCormack (1884-1945) with a guard at the Metropolitan Opera stage door, New York City. Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

E. Caruso
Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Lou Tellegen & Farrar

Lou Tellegen & Farrar

Photograph shows American soprano opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967) with her husband, actor and screenwriter Lou Tellegen (1881-1934). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by ... more

Gatti Cosazza

Gatti Cosazza

Photograph shows Giulio Gatti-Casazzo (1869-1940), an Italian opera manager who directed the Metropolitan Opera in New York City (1908-1935). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by t... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Edw. Ziegler

Edw. Ziegler

Photograph shows opera manager Edward Ziegler (1870-1947), who became the administrative secretary of the Metropolitan Opera Company in May 1916. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014). Title from data provide... more

Lt. A. Caruso

Lt. A. Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Peterson

Peterson

Photograph shows May Esther Peterson Thompson, a soprano singer for the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2018) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part o... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Farrar as Sans Gene [cartoon]

Farrar as Sans Gene [cartoon]

Photograph shows a cartoon drawn by Enrico Caruso which depicts opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967) in the opera Madame Sans-Gene which was performed at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City in Ja... more

May Peterson

May Peterson

Photograph show opera singer May Esther Peterson Thompson (1880-1952) who sang for the Metropolitan Opera Company. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows soprano opera singer and film actress, Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: Geo... more

Morgana

Morgana

Photograph shows soprano opera singer Nina Morgana (d. 1986) who appeared at the Metropolitan Opera from 1920 through 1935. Her husband was singer Bruno Zirato. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Sophie Braslau

Sophie Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City, at a piano. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive His... more

R. Martin

R. Martin

Photograph shows American opera singer Riccardo Martin (born Hugh Whitfield Martin, 1874-1952). Martin debuted with the Metropolitan Opera in the role of Faust in 1907 and remained as lead tenor for the company... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Caruso & Muzio

Caruso & Muzio

Photograph shows tenor opera singer Enrico Caruso (1873-1921) with Italian opera singer Claudia Muzio (1889-1936). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the... more

Reiss Family

Reiss Family

Photograph shows German tenor opera singer Albert Reiss (1870-1940) who performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City with his family including his wife and children. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 201... more

E. Caruso Jr., Mrs. Caruso, Caruso, G. Setti

E. Caruso Jr., Mrs. Caruso, Caruso, G. Setti

Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantham Bain Collection is availabl... more

Rappold

Rappold

Photograph shows Marie Rappold, a German-American soprano who performed with the Metropolitan Opera from 1905 to 1920. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2018) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on... more

Sophie Braslau

Sophie Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Advertisement for Victor Records: Enrico Caruso sings Largo from "Xerxes"

Advertisement for Victor Records: Enrico Caruso sings Largo from "Xerx...

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Johnson

Johnson

Photograph shows Edward Patrick Johnson (1878-1959) who was a Canadian tenor opera singer who also went by the name of Edoardo Di Giovanni. He also served as general manager of the Metropolitan Opera (1935 to 1... more

L. Rothier

L. Rothier

Photograph shows French opera singer Léon Rothier (1874-1951), standing at the door of the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the neg... more

Caruso & R. Bartelemy

Caruso & R. Bartelemy

Photograph shows opera singer Enrico Caruso (1873-1921) with composer and pianist Riccardo Barthelemy (Richard Barthélemy) (1869-1937). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014)

A. Reiss

A. Reiss

Photograph shows German tenor opera singer Albert Reiss (1870-1940) who sang with the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City, seated at a piano. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provide... more

A. Scotti

A. Scotti

Photograph shows Italian opera singer Antonio Scotti (1866-1936) who sang with the New York Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the ne... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso
Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Rodolfo Caruso

Rodolfo Caruso

Photograph shows Rodolfo Caruso (1898-1951, the son of opera singer Enrico Caruso (1873-1921). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2018) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Photogra... more

E. Caruso

E. Caruso

Photograph shows Enrico Caruso (1873-1921), Italian operatic tenor. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Caruso

Caruso

Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantham Bain Collection is availabl... more

A. Reiss

A. Reiss

Photograph shows German tenor opera singer Albert Reiss (1870-1940) who performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided by the Bain News Ser... more

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows soprano opera singer and film actress, Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: Geo... more

Sophie Braslau

Sophie Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1902-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia)

E. Caruso

E. Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Caruso

Caruso

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Howard

Howard

Photograph shows Canadian-born mezzo-soprano opera singer Kathleen Howard (1884-1956) sewing items on a hat. Howard was a star of the Metropolitan Opera from 1916-1918, had a career as a fashion editor for Harp... more

Braslau

Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

P. Amato

P. Amato

Photograph shows Italian opera singer Pasquale Amato (1878-1942) who sang with the Metropolitan Opera from 1908 until 1921. Amato is standing next to an automobile. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014) Title ... more

Advertisement Victor Records Arturo Toscanini La Scala Orchestra plays the Minuet and Allegro for Mozart's symphony

Advertisement Victor Records Arturo Toscanini La Scala Orchestra plays...

Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantham Bain Collection is availabl... more

Arturo Toscanini

Arturo Toscanini

Photograph shows Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini (1867-1957) who was conductor of the Metropolitan Opera from 1908 to 1915, leaving New York in April, 1915. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2012)

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows soprano opera singer and film actress, Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part of: Geo... more

Peterson

Peterson

Photograph shows May Esther Peterson Thompson, a soprano singer for the Metropolitan Opera. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2018) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms part o... more

Gatti Casazza

Gatti Casazza

Photograph shows Giulio Gatti-Casazzo (1869-1940), an Italian opera manager who directed the Metropolitan Opera in New York City (1908-1935). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2016) Title from data provided by t... more

Rappold

Rappold

Photograph shows Marie Rappold, a German-American soprano who performed with the Metropolitan Opera from 1905 to 1920. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2018) Title from data provided by the Bain News Service on... more

May Peterson

May Peterson

Photograph show opera singer May Esther Peterson Thompson (1880-1952) who sang for the Metropolitan Opera Company. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Sophie Braslau

Sophie Braslau

Photo shows opera singer Sophie Braslau (1888-1935), a contralto who performed with the Metropolitan Opera, New York City. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2009 and Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Ency... more

Gatti-Casazza [i.e. Gatti-Casazzo]

Gatti-Casazza [i.e. Gatti-Casazzo]

Photograph shows Giulio Gatti-Casazzo (1869-1940), an Italian opera manager who directed the Metropolitan Opera in New York City (1908-1935). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2014)

Caruso & wife

Caruso & wife

Title from unverified data provided by the Bain News Service on the negatives or caption cards. Forms part of: George Grantham Bain Collection (Library of Congress). General information about the George Grantha... more

Lou Tellegen & Farrar

Lou Tellegen & Farrar

Photograph shows American soprano opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967) with her husband, actor and screenwriter Lou Tellegen (1881-1934). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015)

Farrar

Farrar

Photograph shows American soprano opera singer Geraldine Farrar (1882-1967) with her husband, actor and screenwriter Lou Tellegen (1881-1934). (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2017) Title from data provided by ... more

A. Reiss

A. Reiss

Photograph shows German tenor opera singer Albert Reiss (1870-1940) who performed at the Metropolitan Opera in New York City, seated on a couch. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2015) Title from data provided b... more

Geo. Siemonn, Mabel Garrison

Geo. Siemonn, Mabel Garrison

Photograph shows American coloratura soprano opera singer Mabel Garrison Siemonn (1886-1963) who performed at the Metropolitan Opera (1914-1921) with her husband professor George Siemonn. (Source: Flickr Common... more

A. Bodansky i.e., Bodanzky

A. Bodansky i.e., Bodanzky

Photograph shows Artur Bodanzky (Bodzansky) (1877-1939), an Austrian-American conductor. (Source: Flickr Commons project, 2013) Title and date from data provided by the Bain News Service on the negative. Forms ... more