|Josef Hoffmann: Das Rheingold|
This past week, the Beloved Flatmate and I enjoyed the rarity of a Friday night out... listening to a talk on staging the Ring! Thanks to the Met Opera student program, this was free of charge for us; it may have been for the larger public as well, but I wasn't able to find that information. Our entertaining (yes, really) and informative speaker was William Berger, author of, inter alia, Wagner Without Fear. Mr. Berger, diplomatic throughout, offered a historical overview of Ring stagings, divided into three categories, which he purposefully created and compromised almost in the same breath. (The Beloved Flatmate and I were taking mental notes on pedagogy, too.) Our three sample productions were all from Bayreuth: 1876, Josef Hoffmann; 1951, Wieland Wagner; and 1976, Patrice Chéreau. They were characterized, respectively, as representative, abstract, and conceptual... but before we got too far into all that, we began, appropriately enough, in the River Rhine.
|Patrice Chereau: Die Walkuere|