Thread: What opera have you been watching lately?

          
   
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  1. #1576
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    I know the story, but even as a toad Alberich is still wearing the Ring. And if the Ring is good enough to enslave millions, why can't it enslave Loge and Wotan? Is it because they are gods (or at least demi-gods?). But then if they are stronger than the Ring why should Wotan covet it?
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    But then if they are stronger than the Ring why should Wotan covet it?

    Ummm. Because Wotan needs the Ring/Rheingold to pay off the giants and get them to release Freya from captivity.

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    Ummm. Because Wotan needs the Ring/Rheingold to pay off the giants and get them to release Freya from captivity.
    But Wotan wanted to keep the ring for himself. And he later realized that if Alberich got the ring back it would mean the ultimate destruction of Valhalla and the gods. But to do so, Alberich would have to build an army to storm the castle. So apparently the ring can control people but I am guessing that it works best on weaker minded people and is of little value directly against the gods--except perhaps if it is one god against another.
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
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    Finally got around to the Lyon Die Gezeichneten. Wowee! Sign me up for the Franz Schreker fan club! I've been listening to the overture on repeat ever since.
    Last edited by Soave_Fanciulla; January 5th, 2018 at 01:15 AM.

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    Ummm. Because Wotan needs the Ring/Rheingold to pay off the giants and get them to release Freya from captivity.
    Yes, the giants demand the Ring, but Wotan is really reluctant to agree. He wants to keep it and Erda has to persuade him to give it up.
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    I know the story, but even as a toad Alberich is still wearing the Ring. And if the Ring is good enough to enslave millions, why can't it enslave Loge and Wotan? Is it because they are gods (or at least demi-gods?). But then if they are stronger than the Ring why should Wotan covet it?
    Again, I think it helps to look at what the ring stands for allegorically: the gold, or in terms of Wagner's own age, the accumulated wealth of capitalism. This understanding is central to The Perfect Wagnerite, George Bernard Shaw's famous study of the cycle as social and political allegory. Recounting the story from his socialist perspective, Shaw focuses heavily on the gold and its corrupting power. But he doesn't even mention the ring until the end of the third scene of Das Rheingold, right before Wotan and Loge take it from Alberich, and even then only as "the symbol of his power."

    Of course, we don't have to go that far in minimizing the ring's importance as an object its own right. But looking at the ring in allegorical/symbolic terms in relation to nineteenth-century capitalism, we can see how its power may enslave the masses, while still being under threat from rival plutocrats.
    Last edited by Amfortas; March 1st, 2017 at 04:46 PM.

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    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    I think the plot of the Ring has a few imperfections but as a whole it is a formidable arc with compelling suspense, good action pace (minus some longueurs in Siegfried) and suggestive symbolism so I don't worry that much about the few inconsistencies. Besides, it all comes with glorious music...
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    I think the plot of the Ring has a few imperfections but as a whole it is a formidable arc with compelling suspense, good action pace (minus some longueurs in Siegfried) and suggestive symbolism so I don't worry that much about the few inconsistencies. Besides, it all comes with glorious music...
    Amfortas makes a good point, and yes, that is usually my approach, but I was still shouting at Alberich yesterday: "You've got the %%^%^$ Ring, man (dwarf?), do something!"
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    Amfortas makes a good point, and yes, that is usually my approach, but I was still shouting at Alberich yesterday: "You've got the %%^%^$ Ring, man (dwarf?), do something!"
    Don't forget that Alberich is the only one who survives, and the title role.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

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    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    I am now halfway through Opera North's truly amazing Ring, and this was one of the most nuanced and interesting performances I have seen. No scenery, (bar a few projections) so everything has to be conveyed through the singing and acting. Wagner fans should not miss this.
    Natalie

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    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    I am now halfway through Opera North's truly amazing Ring, and this was one of the most nuanced and interesting performances I have seen. No scenery, (bar a few projections) so everything has to be conveyed through the singing and acting. Wagner fans should not miss this.
    We touched on our taste for semi-staged productions the other day, and this sounds as if it's in similar territory. I was thinking of something I read quite a while ago about how Wagner's operas ended up being such vehicles for Regie treatments.

    After WW II, and a perception of a connection between the 'national socialists' and the Wagner family and Bayreuth, Wieland Wagner realized that the traditional, naturalistic, style of staging long associated with Wagner's operas, had to be replaced to be credible with post-war audiences. The new minimalist stagings were spectacularly successful as they emphasized the psychological and symbolic aspects of the operas:

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    It's amazing how well minimalist stagings work - how the imagination fills in the gaps.

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    Senior Member Top Contributor Member Florestan's Avatar
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    ^ if only they would release it on DVD!
    "Ah,non credea mirarti si presto estinto, o fiore." --Bellini, La Sonnambula (also written on his tomb).

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    I was all lined up to listen to the second Colin Davis Les Troyens, but saw that the recent French-language Tannhauser Ann's friend saw in Monte Carlo is now available on Youtubenwith French subs, so watching that instead. So far, they've staged the ballet as a bunch of red-headed young ladies carrying hash pipes and cavorting on the floor amongst tulle flowers.
    Last edited by Soave_Fanciulla; January 5th, 2018 at 01:16 AM.

  14. #1589
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dichteurehalle View Post
    So far, they've staged the ballet as a bunch of red-headed young ladies carrying hash pipes and cavorting on the floor amongst tulle flowers.
    Sounds about right for a Venusian bacchanale!
    Natalie

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    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
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    My first encounter with Il trittico; got to check out a blu-ray from the public library. I intentionally left it alone for my first couple years of opera viewing, so that hopefully I would appreciate Puccini even more and it would be a bit like a special dessert.

    Surprisingly, it was the popular Schicchi that made the least impression on me. I don't think it was as funny as it could have been. But it could be that I was just a little tired. Suor Angelica was beautiful. I'll need a few follow-up listens, but it might be one of my favorite Puccini operas.

    As for connection between the 3 works, I've always read the plots to them and thought there was no connection. And all of the variations of what people say the common thread is, have always sounded dumb. I think the only common thread is that they all feel somewhat quintessentially Italian. Not a portrait of Italy, but a reflection of common stories of Italian literature/theatre. Has anybody ever tried to link Il trittico with the Italian flag in any way?

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