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Don't Miss Wagner's Complete Ring On PBS September 11 To 14 !

  If you've never experienced Richard Wagner's  stupendous  "Ring of the Nibelungen "  cycle before , you will have your chance beginning  next September 11 through 14 on PBS .  This  mind-boggling  apocalyptic  operatic  epic  is certainly  a daunting  experience for opera newbies,  but  there will be English subtitles  and you can easily  google the complete plot .  Wikipedia is a good source for this .  PBS is presenting the controversial  recent  Met production  with  computer-generated special effects  by the renowned Canadian  director Robert Lepage , and the conducting duties are shared by  James Levine and  recently appointed Met principal conductor Fabio Luisi, who had to step in because of Levine's  protracted ailments , and  many of today's leading Wagner singers will be in the cast, including  Deborah Voigt, Bryn terfel, Stepahnie Blythe,  Eric Owens ,  Waltraud  Meier and Jonas Kauffmann in the very large cast .

   Wagner's  gargantuan  epic  cycle of four  operas , or "music dramas" as he preferred to call them , is based on  Germanic and norse  mythology , complete with gods, goddesses,  superheroes,  giants,  dwarfs, Valkyries  on magic steeds ,  water nixies, a ferocious dragon,  a magic  sword,  and a magic helmet which enables you to become a shape shifter , among other  cool things. But the central object in the story is a  fateful golden ring  made from the magic gold of the river Rhine which  gives its owner supreme power over everyone and everything.  But there's one catch - there is a  terrible curse attached to it which  leads to the  death and destruction of any one who possesses it .

   Does this sound vaguely like  Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings"  and  the movie series ?  Well, sort of , but not exactly .  The end of the cycle,  called "Twilight of the Gods," ends with  the  death of the superhero  Siegfried  and  the  destruction of the gods,  who have been  corrupted by  the  lust for power of their chief god, Wotan (Odin in Scandinavian mythology ) as  Valhalla , their  mighty abode in the skies  burns  and th eRhine overflows its banks, flooding the earth . It's an awesome, apocaplyptic ending  . 

   Wagner's stupendous music  far surpasses  any of the film scores by hollywood composers , as skillfull and effective as they are .  You wil also be able to  experience this  Ring through streaming at the Met's website  , and later on DVDs when it comes out .  Wagner's Ring is like nothing you have ever experienced before !   The four  parts of the Rng are "Das Rheingold " (The Rhinegold,) "Die Walkure".(The Valkyrie), "Siegfried"  , and  "Gotterdammerunf"  (Twilight pof the gods).  It's about 16 hours of music  spread over four evenings ,  but  an experience not to be missed !

Posted: Sep 04 2012, 09:46 PM by the horn | with no comments
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