Archive for the L.A. Opera Category

Siegfried, a slow conversion

Posted in 19th cent., 21st Century, Achim Freyer, Arthur Rackham, L.A. Opera, The Ring Cycle on June 14, 2010 by babylonbaroque

My aesthetic journey continues.

I have complained rather ceaselessly about Achim Freyer’s production of Der Ring des Nibelungen.

I might be experiencing a change of heart.

Perhaps it was because the Beloved was able to accompany me to this performance, his optimism is infectious. Perhaps it was the very engaging lecture by Katheryn Syer, professor of musicology, University of Illinois, held this past saturday at LACMA’s Bing auditorium. Perhaps I’m just opening myself to his vision.

John Treleaven as Siegfried

I still have my hesitations, yellow haired, blue skinned anime-esque action figure? Probably not what Wagner had in mind.

But the performance was stirring.

Images taken from the first Ring , 1876

Siegfried front and centre.

I am better able to understand and appreciate Freyer’s vision. It is complete, and at times deeply moving and wondrous.

At times, silly, I cannot fully grasp Fafner as a teeny elfin dragon. My understanding of the dragon slaying scene goes back to childhood with this image.

ca. 1914

With that prejudice in mind,   I am eager to see the final installment, Gotterdammerung.

Until then a few images of Siegfried more in keeping with my usual taste.

A very creepy image by Rackham of the perverse step-dad Mime offering grub to the toddler Siegfried.

A wonderfully romantic image of the handsome Siegfried awakening the beautiful Brunnhilde with a kiss.

ca. 1892

Otto Donner van Richter 1828- 1911

Dear Mad Ludwig would have been truly mad for this, a great scheme for a mural at Neuschwanstein.

So much the sort of image I grew up with. Siegfried discovering his voice.

Same pose.

The Dutch , Jacques Urlus (1887-1935) ca. 1913

Just another typical image, I’ve always been a fan of helmets with dragon/Fafner motifs.

Just a closing image with the original Brunnhilde, Amalie Materna.

Please note that Grane is from Ludwig’s stable.

Such devotion to the cause.

Good Night