Richard Wagner's "Der Ring des Nibelungen"
September 8, 2012 1:05 PM Subscribe
posted by Egg Shen (49 comments total)
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Next week, for the first time in 22 years, PBS will televise
the four dramas of Richard Wagner's Ring cycle
on consecutive nights - a rare opportunity to encounter in the manner intended "the most ambitious and most profound work of art ever created
Described by the Metropolitan Opera as the most ambitious production
in its 130 year history, this version by Robert Lepage (previously)
has received unusually harsh reviews
. But then so did the now-classic 1976 Bayreuth centennial
production by Patrice Chéreau.
The first recorded cycle - completed by Georg Solti in 1965 - has been named in critics polls as the greatest recording of all time
and remains the consensus recommendation. Its cast of great voices - including the immortal Birgit Nilsson as Brunnhilde - will certainly never be surpassed. A documentary of its creation can be viewed here (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
A useful guide to the leitmotifs as they occur during the dramas can be found at the outstanding Wagnerheim
contains everything you ever wanted to know - and probably more - about the Wagner tuba.
And of course any Wagner post requires a link to Chuck Jones' masterpiece "What's Opera, Doc?"