Sunday, 12 February 2012

Wagner's Gotterdammerung!

I was at the City Screen in York yesterday evening to watch the Metropolitan Opera perform Richard Wagner's Gotterdammerung; the final opera in the wonderful Ring Cycle, and what a finish!

The final installment of Robert Lepage’s new production of the Ring Cycle was conducted by Fabio Luisi who produced a wonderful performance of this daunting nearly six hour opera from the Met orchestra. The singers move inside Robert Lepage’s extraordinary, if slightly creaky and sometimes distracting, staging; a three-dimensional world created by projections cast onto a 45-ton set composed of two dozen huge planks that bend and flex and move up and down. The movement of these planks transforms the stage from a rocky Rhine to a fiery wall and allows for different projections and different depths to create the colours and structures that bring the stage alive.

Jay Hunter Morris was Siegfried and Deborah Voigt played Brünnhilde. Gunther and Hagen, sung by Iain Paterson and Hans-Peter König, were really good and Wendy Bryn Harmer brought some magic to the role of Gutrune. Waltraud Meier was a passionate and powerful Waltraute but for me the best musical moments came from the orchestra and men’s chorus led by Fabio Luisi.

It was an extraordinary performance of a simply wonderful piece of music!


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