Aria Code is a podcast that pulls back the curtain on some of the most famous arias in opera history, with insight from the biggest voices of our time, including Roberto Alagna, Diana Damrau, Sondra Radvanovsky, and many others. Hosted by Grammy Award-winner and MacArthur “Genius” Fellow Rhiannon Giddens, Aria Code is produced in partnership with The Metropolitan Opera.
Each episode dives into one aria — a feature for a single singer — and explores how and why these brief musical moments have imprinted themselves in our collective consciousness and what it takes to stand on the Met stage and sing them.
A wealth of guests—from artists like Rufus Wainwright and Ruben Santiago-Hudson to non-musicians like Dame Judi Dench and Dr. Brooke Magnanti, author of The Intimate Adventures of a London Call Girl—join Rhiannon and the Met Opera’s singers to understand why these arias touch us at such a human level, well over a century after they were written. Each episode ends with the aria, uninterrupted and in full, recorded from the Met Opera stage.
Aria Code is produced in partnership with WQXR, The Metropolitan Opera and WNYC Studios.
Love Takes Flight: Catán's Florencia en el Amazonas
Davis’s X: The Life and Legacy of Malcolm X
Malcolm X means many things to many people. In Anthony Davis’s opera, his humanity comes first.
Revisiting Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice: Don’t Look Back in Ardor
When someone you love dies, how far would you be willing to go to bring them back? The mythical Orpheus goes to hell and back, but even that isn’t enough to save his love Eurydice.
Good Things Come to Those Who Weep: Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’Amore
Sometimes, a single tear can launch a lifetime of happiness.
Death, Faith, and Redemption: Heggie’s Dead Man Walking
The true story of a man on death row and the nun who accompanied him to the execution chamber.
Aria Code Returns for Season 4!
Aria Code is back! At long last, Rhiannon Giddens returns to guide listeners through highlights from the Met’s ‘23-’24 season. Our first episode drops October 4th. Subscribe wherever you get podcasts!
Love your podcast
Thank you for year one and two and three
Too political, too left , too woke. For a less opinionated experience, I suggest the lectures of Robert Greenberg (The Great Courses).
Reignited the spark of love
Thank you for this podcast! I am so grateful to listen to it. After many years of loving opera and even being an opera educator the love affair was starting to dim but you’ve reignited it. Hearing others love and passion for this art has brought it all back to me.