A night at the opera, an apple for the teacher

Got three hours to spare? The Metropolitan Opera premieres a new season on PBS with Strauss' "Arabella." The Disney Channel also offers a free day so cable subscribers can tune in the annual "American Teacher Awards," which include a Maryland recipient this year.

* "Metropolitan Opera Presents 'Arabella' " (8 p.m.-11 p.m., MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- In the 19th season premiere from Lincoln Center, Christian Thielemann conducts and the troupe sings the Richard Strauss opera in German (with English subtitles). Radio station WBJC-FM (91.5) will simulcast the performance. PBS.


* "The Drew Carey Show" (8:30 p.m.-9 p.m., WMAR, Channel 2) -- Don't they say the person who defends himself in court has a fool for a lawyer? Then again, Drew's alternatives in fighting a lawsuit are the department store attorneys, played by guests Penn and Teller. ABC.

* "Party of Five" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WBFF, Channel 45) -- Memories of his departed girlfriend hinder Bailey's (Scott Wolf) new relationship with Sarah (Jennifer Love Hewitt). Claudia (Lacey Chabert) also has an accident at the skating rink. Fox.


* "Central Park West" (9 p.m.-10 p.m., WJZ, Channel 13) -- Stephanie (Mariel Hemingway) finally lowers the boom and fires Carrie (Madchen Amick), after learning the columnist's security card was used to access top-secret files. CBS.

* "Law & Order" (10 p.m.-11 p.m., WBAL, Channel 11) -- McCoy (Sam Waterston) and Kincaid (Jill Hennessy) uncover a bribery scheme connected to a triple murder -- and find that a judge is implicated in fixing a verdict of acquittal. NBC.

* " Talking With David Frost" (Midnight-1 a.m., MPT, Channels 22, 67) -- Poet Maya Angelou is the guest of the hour. While discussing many topics, she says she is boycotting the popular quiz program "Jeopardy!" for its lack of African-American contestants.


* "The American Teacher Awards" (7 p.m.-10 p.m., The Disney Channel) -- A day of free viewing helps the premium service showcase its sixth annual tribute to 36 outstanding teachers from across the U.S. -- including Maryland's Gabriela Epstein Yonker, of Chevy Chase Elementary School. Among the celebrity participants are Harrison Ford, Richard Dreyfuss, Hector Elizondo, Kathy Ireland, Gabrielle Carteris and Richard Dean Anderson.

* "Donor Unknown" (9 p.m.-11 p.m., USA) -- There's a reason doctors don't reveal the source of donor organs, as this new thriller demonstrates. Peter Onorati stars as the recipient of a new heart who seeks out its source and wishes he hadn't. With Alice Krige and Sam Robards.