Mary's Library

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Opera Uber Alles

Today's New York Times brought two pieces of welcome news from the opera world.

First, The Los Angeles Opera has received a very generous gift to enable it to present Wagner's complete Der Ring Des Nibelungen. The starting date is uncertain and the four music dramas will likely be presented over two seasons.

Second, The New York Metropolitan Opera is making arrangements to broadcast operas live in movie theaters in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. This is especially good news for those of us who live some distance from a major opera company.

Mary has been an opera fan much longer than I. On the other hand, I did get Mary enthralled by Wagner. Our favorite opera performance is the Bavarian National Opera production of Das Rheingold that we saw in Munich in 2002. We still maintain our membership in The Wagner Society of Washington, DC.

For those of you who have not yet been captivated by the operas of Wagner, check out Wagner Without Fear: Learning to Love -- and Even Enjoy -- Opera's Most Demanding Genius, William Berger (1998). This is an entertaining and informative guide to everything you need to know about Wagner and his operas.

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