TIMES SQUARE, Manhattan (PIX11) — If you’ve never seen opera live, you may be missing out on something big.

Huge emotions, beautiful music and pageantry to die for.

Thousands attended a free Metropolitan Opera opening night screening in Times Square.

A Greek tragedy unfolded amid Times Square’s hustle, bustle, street dancing, and horn honking.

It was opening night of the Metropolitan Opera‘s Mede, where tickets 20 blocks north at Lincoln Center can cost upwards of $300, but here in Times Square, 2000 seats were free.

There was even a standing room crowd in Father Duffy Square.

“I’m from New Jersey. I took the nine-dollar bud in, and by chance, I heard about this,” Claudia Portnoy, a Leonia resident, told PIX11 News. ”What a great thing to see the opera in Times Square opening night live,” she added.

This is the 16th year the Metropolitan opera’s opening night was broadcast to numerous large screens on 47th and Broadway.

For many New Yorkers, this was the first chance to see what opera is all about.

“It’s a great opportunity giving the community a better chance to see a good live show,” Nyeasha Cancel, a first-time operagoer, told PIX11 News.

Her companion agreed.

“As an artist, you have to be open to many different types, many genres,” Elijah Martin, another first-time operagoer, told PIX11 News. “I went to school and studied opera; nice to hear and see it, being from New York,” he added.

Cherubini’s Medea starring Sondra Radvanovsky in a tour de force role is a very, very dark tale about betrayal, family dysfunction, revenge and killing one’s children.

So how did first-time operagoers like what they saw on the big screens?

“I’m going to start going more to the theater where the Metropolitan Operas are shown,” Barbara Magee, a tourist from Portland, Oregon, told PIX11 News.

Rachel Joseph, a New Yorker and first-time operagoer, said, “The singing is beautiful, very enjoyable,” she added.

And Claudia Portnoy said she’d rather see opera here than at Lincoln Center. “Sometimes it’s a nap there, but you can’t nap here,” meaning Times Square, she added.