Broadcast: Monteverdi’s Orfeo

Looking Back at Orpheus | 2020/21 Season

Monteverdi's Orfeo

Friday, November 27, 2020 at 8pm (EST)


Widely regarded as the first great opera, Claudio Monteverdi's Orfeo features one of opera’s most adored stories, in which the heroic Orfeo endures the tragic death of his beloved Euridice, and travels to the underworld to plead for her return. Breathtaking in its beauty and variety, this masterpiece defined an art form still in its infancy, with rich instrumental colors, dramatic word painting, and a virtuosic opulence of tone and texture.

This broadcast will feature archival video of BEMF’s June 2015 production, where Orfeo was presented alongside Monteverdi’s Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria and L’incoronazione di Poppea as part of a groundbreaking presentation of all three of Monteverdi’s surviving operas. Tenor Aaron Sheehan (Orfeo) and soprano Mireille Asselin (Euridice) lead an outstanding cast featuring GRAMMY-nominee Teresa Wakim (Proserpina), bass-baritone Matthew Brook (Charon), and baritone Marco Bussi (Plutone), alongside dancer Carlos Fittante and 18 instrumentalists from the BEMF Chamber Ensemble and Dark Horse Consort. Lighting Design is by Lenore Doxsee and videography is by Kathy Wittman of Ball Square Films with audio by GRAMMY Award-winning sound engineer Antonio Oliart Ros of WCRB Classical Radio Boston.

Part of our "Looking Back at Orpheus" Broadcast Event!

We are committed to compensating the  gifted artists who bring this beautiful music to life. BEMF is able to make this concert freely available due to the generous contributions of hundreds of passionate music lovers around the world. We hope you will consider joining them by making a donation today.


Featurette: Looking Back | Monteverdi's Orfeo

Pre-Opera Talk

Critical Acclaim

“Equally rewarding as music and drama.”

—The Boston Globe

“An enchanting production.”

—Boston Classical Review

Production Video

Behind-The-Scenes Video

Production Photos


Paul O’Dette & Stephen Stubbs, Musical Directors
Gilbert Blin, Stage Director
Robert Mealy, Concertmaster
Anna Watkins, Costume Designer & Supervisor
Gilbert Blin, Set Designer
Lenore Doxsee, Lighting Designer
Melinda Sullivan, Choreographer


Aaron Sheehan, Orfeo
Teresa Wakim, Ninfa and Proserpina
Mireille Asselin, La Musica and Euridice
Shannon Mercer, Messagiera
Nathan Medley, Pastore I and Speranza
Jason McStoots, Pastore II and Apollo
Charles Blandy, Pastore III
Marco Bussi, Plutone
Matthew Brook, Pastore IV and Caronte

Boston Early Music Festival Chamber Ensemble

Robert Mealy, concertmaster
Julie Andrijeski, violin
Laura Jeppesen, viola
Phoebe Carrai, violoncello
Avi Stein, harpsichord & organ
Alessandro Quarta, harpsichord, organ & regal
Paul O'Dette, chitarrone
Stephen Stubbs, chitarrone
Maxine Eilander, Baroque harp
Erin Headley, viola da gamba & lirone

Dark Horse Consort

Alexandra Opsahl, cornetto & recorder
Kiri Tollaksen, cornetto
Greg Ingles, trombone & trumpet
Liza Malamut, trombone
Catherine Motuz, trombone & trumpet
Erik Schmalz, trombone
Mack Ramsey, trombone

Timothy Will, guest solo trumpet

Boston Early Music Festival Dance Company

Melinda Sullivan, Ballet Mistress
Carlos Fittante, first dancer