World premieres and site-specific performances include Handel: Made in America, featuring Davóne Tines, J'Nai Bridges, and Noah Stewart; Martha Graham Dance Company performing iconic solos throughout the Museum; a new music-theater work by H. Sinno; an Afrofuturist theatricalized culinary experience with Jessica Harris; and Quartet in Residence, Catalyst Quartet returning for a second season
(New York, May 10, 2023)— The Met today announced its 2023–24 season of live arts, which will include original commissions and world premieres staged in the Museum’s galleries—at both The Met Fifth Avenue and The Met Cloisters—as well as performances in the Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium. The season will feature works that illuminate, challenge, and interpret The Met collection on a grand scale, with new site-specific works in more than a dozen galleries and performances by leading contemporary performance artists that interrogate perceived notions about art and culture. The 2023–24 season will include music, dance, and theatricalized culinary experiences that will invite deeper connections and make powerful observations about relevant cultural narratives as well as the Museum itself.
“This MetLiveArts season will offer a compelling and immersive array of performance experiences that will challenge and engage audiences in new and exciting ways,” said Max Hollein, The Met’s Marina Kellen French Director. “These performances create powerful connections between art and life, and it is always extraordinary to see how Live Arts continues to expand upon the stories embedded within The Met’s vast collection.”
This fall, the live arts series begins the season with performances of some of choreographer Martha Graham’s most powerful solos from the 1930s presented throughout the galleries in dialogue with the exhibition Art for the Millions: American Culture and Politics in the 1930s. In January, a sweeping new operetta written and composed by H. Sinno (the former lead singer of the band Mashrou’ Leila) will premiere in the Temple of Dendur and explore Sinno’s lived experiences, including relocating to New York City after leaving Beirut due to significant political conflict and pressures, alongside the ancient Egyptian myth of Osiris. The winter season continues with a new work, Handel: Made in America, directed by Pat Eakin Young and written and performed by Terrance McKnight with opera stars Davóne Tines, J'Nai Bridges, and Noah Stewart; and a performative culinary experience, titled Plating the Future, with American culinary historian Jessica Harris, inspired by Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room. The Catalyst Quartet will also return as The Met’s Quartet in Residence for another season of innovative programs and digital concerts.
“We're thrilled to present a season of performances that push boundaries and defy traditional categorization,” said, Limor Tomer, Lulu C. and Anthony W. Wang General Manager of Live Arts. “Throughout 2023–24, we're exploring new performance styles and hybrid works, all while maintaining a deep focus on The Met—its collections, galleries, and public spaces. The series focuses once again on The Met as a locus for creativity, interrogation and story-telling, and invites artists and audiences to explore unexpected facets of this limitless museum.”
Performances will be both ticketed and free with Museum admission and will take place in person at The Met as well as digitally on The Met’s website. The Museum’s popular “Date Night at The Met” evenings, held every Friday and Saturday from 5 to 9 p.m., will continue to feature live music by ETHEL & Friends and occasional pop-up performances throughout the galleries.
MetLiveArts 2023–24 Performance Details
Madeline Hollander: Hydro Parade
Saturdays, June 3, 10, and 17, at 7 p.m.
Hydro Parade is a processional performance inspired by the water sources moving under, within, and around The Met. Beginning outside the Museum, on Fifth Avenue, and traveling a meditative, rhythmic journey into the Museum and around its various fountains and water features, dancers will create a continuous stream of movement that flows through the galleries. Hollander connects the ancient waterways of the hidden underground springs and the Old Croton Aqueduct, which still run beneath the Museum, to the activity and circulation of visitors in the galleries above.
Ballet Hispánico: Buscando a Juan
Open rehearsals: July 10 and 11, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Performances: July 13 at 1 and 3 p.m., July 14 and 15, at 6 and 8 p.m.
The Robert Lehman Wing court
“Buscando a Juan” (“Looking for Juan”) by choreographer and Artistic Director and CEO of Ballet Hispánico Eduardo Vilaro is inspired by the exhibition Juan de Pareja, Afro-Hispanic Painter. Featuring dancers from Ballet Hispánico, this MetLiveArts commission explores sancocho, or a mixed soup of cultures and diasporas, and will consider the assumptions experienced when witnessing people of color in white spaces in relation to the exoticized body and fixation on gestures and sensuality.
Radical Dance For The People: Martha Graham Dance Company at The Met
Tuesday, September 19; Sunday, October 8; and Tuesday, October, 10, during Museum hours
Various Galleries at The Met Fifth Avenue
A series of pop-up performances of some of choreographer Martha Graham’s most powerful solos from the 1930s will be staged across several afternoons, in various galleries throughout The Met, amplifying the exhibition Art for the Millions: American Culture and Politics in the 1930s. Performed by dancers from the Martha Graham Dance Company, works include Lamentation (1930) and Ekstasis (1933), among others.
Great Hall Commission: Jacolby Satterwhite
October 2 through November 26
The Met’s Great Hall
For the second in the series of commissions for The Met’s Great Hall, Jacolby Satterwhite will transform the iconic space with a site-specific video installation, a soundscape, and performances. Satterwhite’s commission will celebrate the vital role of the Museum within the city and beyond. The installation will be viewable during public hours and performances will take place every Saturday evening from Oct. 7 through Nov. 25 at 7 p.m. More details will be announced this fall.
ModernMedieval Voices: A Midwinter Feast
Saturday December 16, at 3 p.m.
The Fuentidueña Chapel at The Met Cloisters.
ModernMedieval Voices (Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, Chloe Holgate, and Martha Cluver)
returns to The Met Cloisters following their triumphant debut performance in 2019, which featured chants of Hildegard von Bingen interspersed with new commissions by New York composers including Caroline Shaw and Caleb Burhans. In this performance, eight centuries of carols, chants, folk songs, and traditional and ecclesiastic music celebrate the holiday season.
H. Sinno: Westerly Breath (World Premiere)
Thursday, January 25, Friday, January 26, and Saturday, January 27, at 7 p.m.
The Temple of Dendur
Westerly Breath is a newly commissioned operetta for voice, strings and electronics by singer and musician H. Sinno exploring myth, monument, and memoir—inspired by and staged in the Temple of Dendur. This evening-length piece recalls the myth of Osiris, which is at the heart of ancient Egyptian funerary practice; explores the trajectory of the monumental Temple of Dendur as a metaphor for immigration and the ways in which people rebuild their lives in America; and presents biographical moments from Sinno’s own life: after a decade of extraordinary success as the lead singer of the band Mashrou’ Leila and continuous political harassment the band received in Beirut, Sinno moved to New York and began to rebuild himself as a hyphenated American.
Handel: Made in America (World Premiere)
Thursday, February 15 and Friday, February 16, at 7 p.m.
Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
Pat Eakin Young, Director
Terrance McKnight, Writer and Performer
Malcolm J. Merriweather, Conductor
Ellen Harris, Scholar and Dramaturg
J'Nai Bridges, Mezzo Soprano
Noah Stewart, Tenor
Davóne Tines, Bass Baritone
George Frideric Handel is considered among the greatest Baroque composers, and his work, which was popular in his own time, is to this day widely performed and recognized. Handel grew to fame atop a burgeoning global superpower, the British Empire, whose economic, political, and military influence reached farther across the globe than any before. During this time, musical culture, especially opera, was supported by the burgeoning trading companies, the sale of exotic goods, and, notably, the slave trade. Through the lens of Handel's music, and The Met’s British Galleries, musician and storyteller Terrance McKnight creates an intimate and revealing journey about art, power, history, and family, weaving together his own history as an African-American classical musician confronting immense challenges.
Plating the Future
Conceived and Hosted by Jessica Harris
Wednesday, March 27 and Thursday, March 28, at 6:30 p.m.
The Temple of Dendur
American culinary historian, professor, cookbook author, and James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award–winner Jessica Harris takes us on a journey of past, present, and future visions of the Africa Diaspora through food and culinary culture, with performance, food, drink, and conversation in an elaborate cultural and theatricalized meal experience. The evening will feature unique recipes from some of today’s most vibrant chefs, contextualized by Harris and in dialogue with Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room. Tickets include dinner and drinks.
Sight and Sound: The Orchestra Now Series
Join conductor and music historian Leon Botstein as he delves into the parallels between orchestral music and the visual arts. Accompanied by on-screen works from The Met collection and exhibitions, along with musical examples played by The Orchestra Now, Botstein engages in lively discussion that culminates in a full performance and audience Q&A.
Aaron Copland: Statements and Billy the Kid
Sunday, December 3, at 2 p.m.
Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
The 1930s were a time of political and social turmoil in the United States. Through the Dust Bowl and Great Depression, art and music anchored the struggling nation’s search for identity and hope, depicting and publicizing the struggle of the era’s marginalized masses. Aaron Copland mixed everyday Americana tunes with classical music in an unprecedented way—both his austere orchestral Statements and Wild West ballet Billy the Kid quote popular folk music of the day, earning him a reputation as the United States’ “populist” composer. Works from the exhibition Art for the Millions: American Culture and Politics in the 1930s are featured.
Sunday, March 10, at 2 p.m.
Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
Over the summer of 1905, Henri Matisse and André Derain met in a small French Mediterranean fishing village, mere miles from the border of Spain. In just a few weeks of work, the pair pioneered Fauvism, a radiant, technicolor style of art that influenced a small group of their French contemporaries known as les Fauves (“the beasts”). That same year, Claude Debussy started writing his orchestral Images, impressionistic pieces that brought their own fanciful experiments in color and texture.
William Grant Still—Lenox Avenue and Symphony No. 2: Song of a New Race
Sunday, April 14, at 2 p.m.
Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
With the rise of new, urban Black communities both in New York City and abroad, the Harlem Renaissance became the first African American–led movement of international modern art. With that art came developments in visual art, poetry, jazz, and concert music. Though William Grant Still—considered to be the “Dean of African American Composers”—never lived in Harlem, his close ties and collaborations with the leading cultural figures cemented his place as a frontrunner of the Harlem Renaissance.
Ockeghem Marathon: The Clarion Choir and Orchestra
Wednesday, June 12, from 3 to 8 p.m.
Various Galleries at The Met Cloisters
The nearly 50 surviving works of Renaissance composer Johannes Ockeghem (ca. 1420–1497) range vastly in styles and subjects—from sacred and secular, to polite and bawdy—but they all have one thing in common: they changed the course of European music forever, helping to cement the Franco-Flemish school of composition that survived well into the 17th century.
Following their sold-out marathon in 2022 celebrating composer Josquin des Prez, The Clarion Choir and Orchestra return to The Met Cloisters to celebrate Ockeghem’s 600th birthday, with instruments, voices, and five hours of the Franco-Flemish forefather’s music.
2023–24 Quartet in Residence: Catalyst Quartet
After a 2022–23 residency performing works that spanned centuries, continents, and artistic mediums, Grammy Award-winning Catalyst Quartet has been invited by MetLiveArts to return for a second season. The ensemble will continue to explore and deepen the ideas developed during their first year of residency with performances in the galleries, special artist collaborations, and a new Instagram series following the popular CQ Minute. Programming will be announced in fall 2023.
Ballet Hispánico: Buscando a Juan:
This program is made possible by the Arnhold Fund for Dance Innovation at The Met, and the Adrienne Arsht Fund for Resilience through Art.
Madeline Hollander: Hydro Parade:
This program is made possible by the Arnhold Fund for Dance Innovation at The Met.
Handel: Made in America:
This program is made possible by the Adrienne Arsht Fund for Resilience through Art, and the Kaplen Brothers Fund.
H. Sino: Westerly Breath:
This program is made possible by the Adrienne Arsht Fund for Resilience through Art.
The Clarion Choir & Orchestra: Ockeghem Marathon:
This program is made possible by Kathryn O. Greenberg
This program is made possible by the estate of Katherine Walter Stein.
Quartet in Residence programming is made possible by the Grace Jarcho Ross and Daniel G. Ross Concert Fund.
Art for the Millions: American Culture and Politics in the 1930s
The exhibition is made possible by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation and The Schiff Foundation.
Before Yesterday We Could Fly: An Afrofuturist Period Room
The exhibition is made possible by the Hobson/Lucas Family Foundation and the Director’s Fund.
Additional support is provided by Art Mentor Foundation Lucerne and the Terra Foundation for American Art.
Juan de Pareja, Afro-Hispanic Painter
The exhibition is made possible by the Sherman Fairchild Foundation.
Major support is provided by Denise Sobel.
Additional funding is provided by Laura and John Arnold, Fundación María Cristina Masaveu Peterson, Ann M. Spruill and Daniel H. Cantwell, and The Met’s Fund for Diverse Art Histories.
This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.
The Great Hall Commission: Jacolby Satterwhite
The commission is made possible by Cynthia Hazen Polsky and Leon B. Polsky.
Additional support is provided by Sarah Arison, the Adrienne Arsht Fund for Resilience through Art, and Helen Lee Warren and David Warren.