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05/15/2012

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Yes, there is definitely something unsettling about the Ring, and the relationship of Sieglinde and Siegmund especially. Die Walkure is the only part of the Ring that I have heard live -- plus about half of Gotterdammerung -- and at moments I was squirming in my seat.

It sounds like the production I saw was more traditional -- less sleek and high tech -- than the one you are seeing. At mine there was a lot of grime, and the World Ash Tree looked about a thousand years old.

The staging is sleek and high-tech, the costumes are not--most of the characters, even the gods, are pretty roughly dressed, like characters from The Lord of the Rings (movie). The Ash Tree is a pattern of lights on one of those beams, and the sword is clearly sitting in a slot on it. One really good thing about the S&S romance is that it's not all sexed up, as I hear is sometimes the fashion in opera productions these days.

I think overall I prefer stylized to any attempt at realism, which is inevitably going to be a failure and quite possible a risible one, which is distracting.

I noticed on the Met web site that these are being shown in Canada, too. Have you checked around to see if they're available? I think it was roughly but not exactly the same schedule.

It probably is showing here too, but I don't want to look. Circumstances are such that I couldn't go anyway, and there's no point in tempting myself! I'm enjoying them vicariously through you.

I'm afraid I'm not doing a very good job of describing them. The idea of trying to do something on the order of an overall review is a bit overwhelming. But...I liked Siegfried, mostly. I think I would recommend this series, though, if/when they become available on dvd. Or perhaps there will be another repeat of these theater showings.

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