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Domingo conducting Walkure at Bayreuth????? next year????
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m***@gmail.com
2017-07-25 07:48:21 UTC
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Supposedly from a press conference in Bayreuth. Hard for me to believe since he has been railing against current eurotrash productions and he would be conducting the Castorf Walkure - also the first time a solo Ring opera has been performed at Bayreuth. I thought next season was set - Lohengrin (new with Harteros not Netrebkoand Alagna as Lohengrin), this years Meistersinger, Parsifal, Hollander and Tristan

http://operawire.com/placido-domingo-to-conduct-wagner-opera-at-bayreuth-in-2018/

http://www.frankenpost.de/region/feuilleton/Domingo-dirigiert-Netrebko-singt-nicht;art6787,5638268
d***@hotmail.com
2017-07-25 11:05:03 UTC
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I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-25 16:13:58 UTC
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I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Weird. There aren't that many more suitable locations in Bayreuth, as far as I know, except the old Margravine's Theatre and perhaps something at the University; and that would seem a bit pointless. But he could make a competent enough job of it, I think. His other conducting has always tended to brisk tempi, a good contrast to Thielmann.

Cheers,

Mike
m***@gmail.com
2017-07-25 20:11:10 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
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I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Weird. There aren't that many more suitable locations in Bayreuth, as far as I know, except the old Margravine's Theatre and perhaps something at the University; and that would seem a bit pointless. But he could make a competent enough job of it, I think. His other conducting has always tended to brisk tempi, a good contrast to Thielmann.
Cheers,
Mike
One of the articles I read said it was the Castorf Walkure so I'm pretty sure it will be in the theatre - there are always free days in the Bayreuth schedule and I guess they just plonked the Walkure into those - but my question is why go through al this trouble??? for Domingos conducting????
REP
2017-07-25 23:05:43 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
Post by d***@hotmail.com
I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Weird. There aren't that many more suitable locations in Bayreuth, as far as I know, except the old Margravine's Theatre and perhaps something at the University; and that would seem a bit pointless. But he could make a competent enough job of it, I think. His other conducting has always tended to brisk tempi, a good contrast to Thielmann.
Cheers,
Mike
One of the articles I read said it was the Castorf Walkure so I'm pretty sure it will be in the theatre - there are always free days in the Bayreuth schedule and I guess they just plonked the Walkure into those - but my question is why go through al this trouble??? for Domingos conducting????
Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally worrisome enough that they're trying to win people back? Only explanation I can think of.

REP

P.S. Yes, I like Domingo. A _lot_ more than I like the current Bayreuth management.
REP
2017-07-25 23:30:55 UTC
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Post by m***@gmail.com
Post by Mike Scott Rohan
Post by d***@hotmail.com
I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Weird. There aren't that many more suitable locations in Bayreuth, as far as I know, except the old Margravine's Theatre and perhaps something at the University; and that would seem a bit pointless. But he could make a competent enough job of it, I think. His other conducting has always tended to brisk tempi, a good contrast to Thielmann.
Cheers,
Mike
One of the articles I read said it was the Castorf Walkure so I'm pretty sure it will be in the theatre - there are always free days in the Bayreuth schedule and I guess they just plonked the Walkure into those - but my question is why go through al this trouble??? for Domingos conducting????
Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally worrisome enough that they're trying to win people back? Only explanation I can think of.
REP
P.S. Yes, I like Domingo. A _lot_ more than I like the current Bayreuth management.
And to provide a little more context here -- Domingo's conducting is pretty controversial. I remember Opera-L trashing his conducting pretty much any time he did so in New York, for example. Quite a few posters there think he only gets conducting gigs because of his singing reputation.

I'm not sure if that's true, but I do get the feeling that Domingo desperately wants recognition in the field of conducting. And conducting at Bayreuth would be a nice feather in his cap, even if it means conducting a production he personally dislikes.

REP
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-26 17:09:25 UTC
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I got the impression that the Walküre performance would be happening at another location in Bayreuth, not the Festspielhaus.
Weird. There aren't that many more suitable locations in Bayreuth, as far as I know, except the old Margravine's Theatre and perhaps something at the University; and that would seem a bit pointless. But he could make a competent enough job of it, I think. His other conducting has always tended to brisk tempi, a good contrast to Thielmann.
Cheers,
Mike
One of the articles I read said it was the Castorf Walkure so I'm pretty sure it will be in the theatre - there are always free days in the Bayreuth schedule and I guess they just plonked the Walkure into those - but my question is why go through al this trouble??? for Domingos conducting????
Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally worrisome enough that they're trying to win people back? Only explanation I can think of.
REP
P.S. Yes, I like Domingo. A _lot_ more than I like the current Bayreuth management.
And to provide a little more context here -- Domingo's conducting is pretty controversial. I remember Opera-L trashing his conducting pretty much any time he did so in New York, for example. Quite a few posters there think he only gets conducting gigs because of his singing reputation.
I'm not sure if that's true, but I do get the feeling that Domingo desperately wants recognition in the field of conducting. And conducting at Bayreuth would be a nice feather in his cap, even if it means conducting a production he personally dislikes.
REP
Domingo has been conducting since he was a teenager, and made several recordings as such, none of which are disastrous and some very good indeed -- and have been recognised as such, at least in European critical sources. I've enjoyed his conducting at Covent Garden myself. He may not be the equal of Solti or Kleiber, but few are; he's an excellent musician, unusually so for a singer, and has a strong theatrical sense; those are better qualifications than some of the plodding routiniers Bayreuth has come up with in recent years, and I certainly don't think he deserves the kind of rancid reactions he's had in the States. While this may be a vanity project on both sides, I wouldn't grudge it him.

And I'd certainly sooner hear him conduct Walkure than sing in it, these days --
Hunding? Wotan? Yike.

Cheers,

Mike
REP
2017-07-26 20:46:39 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
And I'd certainly sooner hear him conduct Walkure than sing in it, these days --
Hunding? Wotan? Yike.
Cheers,
Mike
Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...

REP
m***@gmail.com
2017-07-26 20:51:45 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
And I'd certainly sooner hear him conduct Walkure than sing in it, these days --
Hunding? Wotan? Yike.
Cheers,
Mike
Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...
REP
Telramund YES since I really think a heavy tenor would be just about right vocally for that very demanding part
REP
2017-07-26 21:06:20 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
And I'd certainly sooner hear him conduct Walkure than sing in it, these days --
Hunding? Wotan? Yike.
Cheers,
Mike
Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...
REP
Telramund YES since I really think a heavy tenor would be just about right vocally for that very demanding part
Vinay, the Chilean tenor, had a good voice for Telramund, and he did sing it at Bayreuth (there are recordings which really show off his effectiveness in the role). He also sang Otello, Canio, Siegmund, etc. Not many singers fall into his category, unfortunately.

REP
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-27 14:37:47 UTC
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And I'd certainly sooner hear him conduct Walkure than sing in it, these days --
Hunding? Wotan? Yike.
Cheers,
Mike
Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...
REP
Telramund YES since I really think a heavy tenor would be just about right vocally for that very demanding part
Vinay, the Chilean tenor, had a good voice for Telramund, and he did sing it at Bayreuth (there are recordings which really show off his effectiveness in the role). He also sang Otello, Canio, Siegmund, etc. Not many singers fall into his category, unfortunately.
REP
Quite a lot of heldentenors start as baritones -- Melchior, for example, and of course Domingo more or less alternated between the two, to start with. Some, including Vinay, even have a solid baritone career before changing over as the voice develops; so when they lose the top notes it's no great trouble to revert to their old range. The gulf is not really so wide, and many singers can cross the range, especially from low to high; beyond that it's largely a matter of colour and timbre. The Russo-German Ivan Rebroff, who recorded some serious roles but later became a classical pop star, could famously go in one run from low D right through the tenor range and up into counter-tenor; I saw him do this, and it was alarming. Even I, definitely a bass, could hit a top C of sorts, until threatened by those around me. But it works the other way around, too. On one notable occasion, when the bass suddenly went dry during Boheme, Caruso is said to have told him to mime and, turning his back, sung the whole of Addio, vecchio zimarra -- and got an ovation. Fischer-Dieskau could sing low tenor with no trouble, in fact Decca wanted him to sing Siegmund for Solti. Thomas Hampson, too, has recorded Wintersturme.

Vinay, though, was an unusually convincing Heldenbaritone, perhaps because he'd been such a baritonal tenor, but also because he retained an unusual degree of power -- more than Domingo, I think. Still, he only changed back when his high notes began to go, probably, as with di Stefano, through fast living. Robert Merrill tells two amusingly disreputable stories of encounters with a tenor who is obviously Vinay, in one case getting thumped in a very sensitive area by a pretty young fan (quite possibly the one he married).

Cheers,

Mike
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-27 14:06:28 UTC
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Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...
REP
Hmm, Donner, I think not; he's meant to be young and ardent -- somewhat thick, too. And I'm not sure he'd have quite enough power left for Telramund now, at least in the big aria, though he would catch Telramund's neurotic character as well as he did Don Carlos's. But how about Gunther? Gunther doesn't need to be young; it's a common productorial mistake to make him and Gutrune twins. In fact he is almost certainly the eldest, though Hagen may look older; we know H is little older than Siegfried, perhaps only weeks. And Gunther has some high-lying music, too, which would suit Domingo's still pretty tenorial colours. Not to mention being able to sing Siegfried's part in the Tarnhelm scene...

Cheers,

Mike
Bert Coules
2017-07-27 16:45:01 UTC
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In fact he is almost certainly the eldest...
Definitely so, surely? I don't have the German text to hand, but assuming
that Porter is accurate...

GUNTHER: I am the elder son, but you're the one who's wise...
Not to mention being able to sing Siegfried's part in the Tarnhelm
scene...
I don't understand why directors simply don't use Gunther himself for
Siegfried-in-disguise and find some simple way to switch performers when
necessary.

Bert
REP
2017-07-27 19:58:01 UTC
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Post by Bert Coules
In fact he is almost certainly the eldest...
Definitely so, surely? I don't have the German text to hand, but assuming
that Porter is accurate...
GUNTHER: I am the elder son, but you're the one who's wise...
This matches my recollection.
Post by Bert Coules
Not to mention being able to sing Siegfried's part in the Tarnhelm
scene...
Speaking of Culshaw's Ring, Siegfried-as-Gunther was one of the effects that didn't work with me. For many years, I didn't even know that audio wizardry had been applied. I just assumed that Windgassen was naturally darkening the timbre of his voice (and not enough for my tastes; he still sounds too much like Siegfried to fool anybody).
Post by Bert Coules
I don't understand why directors simply don't use Gunther himself for
Siegfried-in-disguise and find some simple way to switch performers when
necessary.
Heck, I don't understand why _Wagner_ didn't specify that this should be done. Theatrically, it's a lot more interesting. And I'm not sure anything like it had ever been done before.

REP
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-28 12:38:33 UTC
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Post by Bert Coules
In fact he is almost certainly the eldest...
Definitely so, surely? I don't have the German text to hand, but assuming
that Porter is accurate...
GUNTHER: I am the elder son, but you're the one who's wise...
Porter isn't always quite accurate, but he is here. What Gunther actually says is "Erbt ich Erstlingsart...", (Though) I inherited the right of the first-born...". That probably means he *is* the first-born; but Hagen is known to be illegitimate, so it would be possible that he's been disinherited (getting very Game of Thrones, all this). Hence my element of doubt. However, if Gunther were younger than Hagen he would have to be younger than Siegfried too, and that's unlikely -- a famous, accomplished leader who has evidently brought the Rhineland under his rule, great enough to attract Siegfried's attention above all others. He just doesn't *sound* particularly young, anyhow. And in the Volsungasaga and Eddaic sources Gunther is the eldest brother, so very probably that's what Wagner intended too.
Post by Bert Coules
Not to mention being able to sing Siegfried's part in the Tarnhelm
scene...
I don't understand why directors simply don't use Gunther himself for
Siegfried-in-disguise and find some simple way to switch performers when
necessary.
I believe, despite what I said about overlap, that the problem is vocal; most baritones, even low-lying ones (and Gunther is often sung by a Donner or Wotan) can probably sing Siegfried's low line in this scene, but not the higher outburst when he suddenly reverts at scene's end -- at least, not to sound like Siegfried. However, I have seen the Gunther singer appear in this scene, though where I can't immediately say. But I think they still used Siegfried's voice; either he was lurking on set, or miked in from offstage. Switching performers isn't popular; it can be a monumental cockup opportunity, especially if one's gone off to swig pale ale in his dressing room.

Cheers,

Mike
REP
2017-07-27 19:32:55 UTC
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Post by Mike Scott Rohan
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Definitely agreed there. His foray into the Italian baritone repertoire wasn't all bad, but I'm not sure I could accept him in any Wagnerian baritone roles. Donner, perhaps, with a good dye-job on the beard. And, crazily enough, Telramund on a really good night. Interesting thought...
REP
Hmm, Donner, I think not; he's meant to be young and ardent -- somewhat thick, too. And I'm not sure he'd have quite enough power left for Telramund now, at least in the big aria, though he would catch Telramund's neurotic character as well as he did Don Carlos's. But how about Gunther? Gunther doesn't need to be young; it's a common productorial mistake to make him and Gutrune twins. In fact he is almost certainly the eldest, though Hagen may look older; we know H is little older than Siegfried, perhaps only weeks. And Gunther has some high-lying music, too, which would suit Domingo's still pretty tenorial colours. Not to mention being able to sing Siegfried's part in the Tarnhelm scene...
Cheers,
Mike
Ah yes, Gunther could be a good dramatic fit, and less vocally demanding. And being a king, Gunther would have reasons for seeking a bride even at an advanced age, because that's just what kings do, q.v. King Marke.

REP
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-28 12:43:59 UTC
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Ah yes, Gunther could be a good dramatic fit, and less vocally demanding. And being a king, Gunther would have reasons for seeking a bride even at an advanced age, because that's just what kings do, q.v. King Marke.
REP
Well, maybe not *that* advanced; he's still active and ambitious, power-hungry, goes hunting etc. Hagen describes him as "in the summer of your ripe strength" -- in his prime, in other words, probably mid-thirties to forties. Domingo could still get away with that on stage.

Cheers,

Mike

Bert Coules
2017-07-26 08:01:06 UTC
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Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally
worrisome enough that they're trying to win
people back?
It seems to be ruined indeed. I was amazed to discover that tickets for
*this year's Rings* are available online - officially, that is, from the
festival's website.

Bert
Mike Scott Rohan
2017-07-26 17:15:36 UTC
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Post by Bert Coules
Post by REP
Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally
worrisome enough that they're trying to win
people back?
It seems to be ruined indeed. I was amazed to discover that tickets for
*this year's Rings* are available online - officially, that is, from the
festival's website.
Bert
I'm not surprised. They've chosen to appeal to the kind of people who will say "Oh, but we went there *last* year...."

Nasty as the old Wagnervereins could be (and I've met some of their ghastly remnants!) they at least helped to keep Bayreuth out of the hands of the jet-setters and beau monde.

Cheers,

Mike
Richard Partridge
2017-07-26 20:04:43 UTC
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Post by Bert Coules
Post by REP
Maybe the festival's ruined reputation is finally
worrisome enough that they're trying to win
people back?
It seems to be ruined indeed. I was amazed to discover that tickets for
*this year's Rings* are available online - officially, that is, from the
festival's website.
Bert
That is very surprising. What a change from a few years ago! Are they able
to fill the house for every performance?

Dick Partridge
Bert Coules
2017-07-27 17:24:03 UTC
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Post by Richard Partridge
Are they able
to fill the house for every performance?
Evidently not. Here's the booking page:
http://ticketshop.bayreuther-festspiele.de/en

Bert
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