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Ozawa survives glitches in his return to the Met

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Seiji Ozawa gave double high-fives to singers as they walked in front of the stage for a group bow. After an absence of nearly 16 years, he had returned to the Metropolitan Opera in New York.

The 73-year-old conductor gave a sweeping romantic account of Tchaikovsky's "The Queen of Spades" on Friday night. Yet, it was an odd performance marred by the vocal problems of ailing tenor Ben Heppner and staging glitches.

One of the Met's goals in recent years has been to improve the quality of its guest conductors, reducing the percentage of human metronomes who lead many revivals.

Lorin Maazel came back in January for the first time since 1963, and Daniel Barenboim is to make his long-awaited debut on Nov. 28. Esa-Pekka Salonen and Riccardo Muti are slated for debuts next season.