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Arrive: 6:45 - 7:00
• Cheryl Studer...Elsa • Paul Frey...Lohengrin • Ortrud...Gabriele Schnaut
Acclaimed director Werner Herzog stages Richard Wagner's
classic opera, Lohengrin in a lavish production filmed at the
famed Bayreuth Opera House, with Peter Schneider
conducting the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra. The medieval
romance of the Swan Knight, who comes miraculously to the
rescue of the falsely accused Elsa of Brabant, became one
of Richard Wagner s most beloved operas. - Amazon.com
Lohengrin is one of Wagner's earlier "Italianate" works, before his style developed into the Wagner of Tristan und Isolde, The Ring Cycle, and Parsifal. It takes place in the Middle Ages. Christianity has triumphed over paganism, but there are still remnants of those who cling to the old gods and religious practices and Ortrud is one. She is motivated both by the desire for power and position, as well as the restoration of the old religion.
Note 1: The Bayreuth Festival Opera House was designed by Wagner himself. The orchestra pit is hidden under the stage, out of sight of the audience. The sound from the orchestra is unique, unlike any other opera house. Wagner deliberately chose an obscure German town, remote from any large population centers and their distractions, to keep the audience focused on his operas (singspiels (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Singspiel)). It worked. The waiting time to get tickets is more than 8 years. The Wagner house in Bayreuth is now a shrine and museum. The festival has been run by Wagner's descendants since his death in 1883.
Note 2: "Festival" denotes summertime music events when the major concert halls and opera houses are closed. Some major music festivals are Santa Fé and Glyndbourne (opera); Tanglewood Music Festival (Boston Symphony), Edinburgh Music Festival, and Salzburg Music Festival. There are dozens of others.
Donations are not requested for this event. Soft drinks will be available (Coke, Diet Coke, gingerale, iced tea). Please bring your own munchies and any beverage of your choice.