Music, School of


First Advisor

Dr. Pamela Starr

Date of this Version



Wigtil, Anna K. "Effects of The Met: Live in HD on the Democratization of Opera in America." Master’s thesis, University Nebraska-Lincoln, 2020.


A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Music Major: Music Under the Supervision of Professor Pamela Starr Lincoln, Nebraska December, 2020

Copyright 2020 Anna K. Wigtil


The Met: Live in HD satellite broadcasts of live opera performances began in 2006 and have since become popular with audiences around the world. While this could be an excellent avenue to democratize opera and make it available to new audiences, the available data indicates that most Live in HD viewers are already opera enthusiasts and have previously attended live opera performances. This thesis examines the history of the Metropolitan Opera’s broadcasting efforts, the demographics of American opera audiences, trends in Live in HD’s repertoire, and strategies to increase Live in HD’s appeal to a broader, more diverse audience that can revitalize opera’s popularity in the United States.

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