Joyce DiDonato begins the 2023/24 season starring as Sister Helen Prejean in a new production of Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking. The new production of Heggie’s masterpiece, directed by Ivo van Hove, makes its highly anticipated Met premiere. Based on the 1993 book of the same name, the opera tells the powerful story of a nun, Sister Helen Prejean, who becomes a spiritual advisor to a death row inmate named Joseph De Rocher.

Ms. DiDonato debuted the role of Sister Helen Prejean at New York City Opera in 2002 and later recorded this thought-provoking work with Houston Grand Opera, released by Erato in 2012. Of the recording, Opera News hailed, “DiDonato succeeds here not just because she is a wonderful singer but because of the kind of singer she is – one driven to create meaning through sound. The intense focus of DiDonato’s art becomes a correlative for Sr. Helen’s religious calling.” For more information and purchase links, please visit Ms. DiDonato’s Recordings.

Performance dates include September 26, 30, October 3, 6, 8, 12, 15, 18 & 21. Steven Osgood and Yannick Nézet-Séguin lead an outstanding cast, including Latonia Moore as Sister Rose, Ryan McKinny as Joseph De Rocher, and Susan Graham as Mrs. Patrick De Rocher. 

The opening night performance will simulcast live to Times Square and is free to the public, and you can listen to a free live audio stream starting at 6:25pm via the Met Opera’s website. The October 21 performance will broadcast live worldwide as part of The Met: Live in HD series. Additionally, there will be a Saturday matinee radio broadcast on January 20, 2024, at 1pm Eastern Time.

There are several public programs and special events for the premiere of Dead Man Walking, including a “Works & Process at the Guggenheim” event with Met General Manager Peter Gelb moderating a discussion with the creative team, and members of the cast perform selections from the opera. For further details, click here.