Thread: Opera Small Talk

          
   
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  1. #811
    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amfortas View Post
    An opera film is certainly very different from watching a live opera, or even a video recording of a live performance. If you don't want to call Syberberg's film an opera production, fair enough. But I still find it a fascinating take on Wagner's original, however you may define the relation between the two works.
    It's not that I dislike film-opera. I loved the Dornhelm La bohème. But it isn't the opera. While Dornhelm tried to keep the lip-syncing to a minimum, in Syberberg's film, it was very difficult paying attention when the lip-syncing was so poorly done. Also, I really feel Syberberg had his own angst on display in the film and not Wagner's. Wagner clearly had a number of complexes, but Syberberg went way beyond, projecting his own issues on Wagner.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amfortas View Post
    I'm not sure I follow you here. Yes, Lehnhoff departs from Wagner's original directions in numerous ways, but so does Girard--so does pretty much any Regie director. Can you be more specific about some Lehnhoff choices that bothered you?
    Lehnhoff's vision reminds me of the 1970 Charlton Heston movie, Beneath the Planet of the Apes. The meaning entirely changed with this post-apocalyptic take on the opera. And what is the deal with the ending? Is that the new kingdom that they enter into? The difference between the Girard and Lehnhoff productions are not a matter of props, scenery, costumes, and color schemes. It is much more fundamental. It is like having Brünnhilde live and birth a child for Siegfried.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amfortas View Post
    If you thought Lehnhoff took too many liberties, you'll probably HATE Herheim!

    But give it a try. If nothing else, it may help you look back on Lehnhoff more favorably.
    Will do.

  2. #812
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    It's not that I dislike film-opera. I loved the Dornhelm La bohème. But it isn't the opera. While Dornhelm tried to keep the lip-syncing to a minimum, in Syberberg's film, it was very difficult paying attention when the lip-syncing was so poorly done. Also, I really feel Syberberg had his own angst on display in the film and not Wagner's. Wagner clearly had a number of complexes, but Syberberg went way beyond, projecting his own issues on Wagner.
    Parsifal certainly fascinates me as a reflection of Wagner's own angst, but I see that angst itself as partly a reflection of (and contributor to) cultural currents in the Germany of his day--currents that carried through to the agonies of 20th-century Germany and, eventually, their dissection in Syberberg's films. So while there are certainly disparate influences at play in Syberberg's Parsifal, I also see the film as part of a complex, tortured, yet fascinating cultural continuum. (I find Herheim's production brilliant for similar reasons).

    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    Lehnhoff's vision reminds me of the 1970 Charlton Heston movie, Beneath the Planet of the Apes. The meaning entirely changed with this post-apocalyptic take on the opera. And what is the deal with the ending? Is that the new kingdom that they enter into? The difference between the Girard and Lehnhoff productions are not a matter of props, scenery, costumes, and color schemes. It is much more fundamental. It is like having Brünnhilde live and birth a child for Siegfried.
    But the Grail knights *do* live in a kind of fallen, post-apocalyptic world, where the old, once life-affirming rituals can be performed only by forcing an agonized, wounded, unwilling celebrant to preside, so that his parasitic living-dead father can maintain his zombie-like existence. It's a nightmarish scenario, and Wagner goes out of his way, dramatically and musically, to evoke it. Lehnhoff simply finds an unflinching visual equivalent for the horror Wagner has already created.

    As for the ending, I grant it departs from Wagner's, but why not? After all the horrors we have seen, it seems only fitting that Parsifal, following Kundry's lead, might set out to fulfill his mission as savior on a new, as yet unheard of path (after all, that's what Christ did).
    Last edited by Amfortas; June 29th, 2013 at 06:00 PM.

  3. #813
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    I The Trovatore looks interesting - I was thinking from the clip that the U.S.' KKK problem was safer territory in Germany than the Nazi stuff, but then it got booed too, so maybe German audiences aren't any crazier about bad Regie elements than we are. I suppose if one wants to go to the opera, one has to take what one gets in productions.
    Actually, I'm not sure the references we see in the video are to the Klan, even with the flaming cross and pointed hoods. It seems the Klan actually borrowed their garb and at least some of their imagery from the Inquisition. A curious choice, given the fact that the KKK historically hasn't been much fonder of Catholics than it is of African-Americans or Jews. On the other hand, one could have never accused the Klan of thinking logically.

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  5. #814
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAuer View Post
    Actually, I'm not sure the references we see in the video are to the Klan, even with the flaming cross and pointed hoods. It seems the Klan actually borrowed their garb and at least some of their imagery from the Inquisition. A curious choice, given the fact that the KKK historically hasn't been much fonder of Catholics than it is of African-Americans or Jews. On the other hand, one could have never accused the Klan of thinking logically.
    However, as the above post proves, we can always accuse *you* of doing so!

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    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    That review of the Calixto Bieto Parsifal was a rave review. Yikes. A Clockwork Orange was subdued by comparison. It does, however, sound fascinating. I'm guessing that neither the Bieto Parsifal nor the Munich Il Trovatore is likely to show up on an American stage anytime soon!

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    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    That review of the Calixto Bieto Parsifal was a rave review. Yikes. A Clockwork Orange was subdued by comparison. It does, however, sound fascinating. I'm guessing that neither the Bieto Parsifal nor the Munich Il Trovatore is likely to show up on an American stage anytime soon!
    While Bieito's Parsifal isn't available on DVD, there is a DVD on Bieito and the making of his Parsifal:
    Name:  51Z7r-ofOkL._SY300_.jpg
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  9. #817
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Yay. I found Sylverberg's Parsifal on YT. (Nat checks wallet, breathes a sigh of relief to see money IS STILL INTACT!).
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Yay. I found Sylverberg's Parsifal on YT. (Nat checks wallet, breathes a sigh of relief to see money IS STILL INTACT!).
    If you haven't seen it before, the entire deal with Parsifal's gender is a bit freaky (at least it was for me).

  11. #819
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyroneslothrop View Post
    If you haven't seen it before, the entire deal with Parsifal's gender is a bit freaky (at least it was for me).
    Oh wow, I can't wait. I feel centered enough after my Mozart marathon to deal with some freakiness (and let's face it, Parsifal is freaky enough to start without before we start mucking around with gender)
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Coordinator - Donor Member Top Contributor Member tyroneslothrop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Oh wow, I can't wait. I feel centered enough after my Mozart marathon to deal with some freakiness (and let's face it, Parsifal is freaky enough to start without before we start mucking around with gender)
    Cool. You can watch Syberberg and I'll watch Herheim and we can both comment on our respective viewings. Methink Amfortas' earlier comments on Herheim have transfused me with great trepidation...

  14. #821
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    I like the Herheim Parsifal, having seen it once. But I'm damned if I know what was going on - not an unusual feeling when I am watching Parsifal.
    Natalie

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  16. #822
    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Dark_Angel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    I like the Herheim Parsifal, having seen it once. But I'm damned if I know what was going on - not an unusual feeling when I am watching Parsifal.
    Don't feel bad, it takes a "perfect fool" to unlock the mysteries of the Holy Grail

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  18. #823
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Angel View Post
    Don't feel bad, it takes a "perfect fool" to unlock the mysteries of the Holy Grail
    Hehehe, that's a pretty clever statement, DA!
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  19. #824
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dark_Angel View Post
    Don't feel bad, it takes a "perfect fool" to unlock the mysteries of the Holy Grail
    Funny, it all makes perfect sense to *me* . . .

  20. #825
    Opera Lively News Coordinator Top Contributor Member MAuer's Avatar
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    I never purchased a video of the Syberberg film, but bought the "sound track" -- the audio recording of Parsifal with Reiner Goldberg in the title role and Yvonne Minton as Kundry. I've heard that Syberberg cast a woman as Parsifal in the film, and I can't help wondering what it will be like hearing Goldberg's decidedly masculine voice apparently coming from her mouth. He was always among the more lyrical members of the Heldentenor camp, but still . . .

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