Wagner's Götterdämmerung

« previous episode | next episode »

Saturday, November 05, 2011

The San Francisco Opera's world-premiere production of Wagner's Ring cycle, staged earlier this year, reaches its transcendent climax. The suspenseful tale of bravery and sacrifice, treachery and betrayal, destruction and renewal proceeds as such: The sacred union of Siegfried and Brünnhilde is threatened by three scheming siblings, one of whom was sired by Alberich to take possession of the ring.

Driven by greed, their actions inevitably lead to chaos and destruction, until Brünnhilde—wise, pure of heart, heroic—steps forward to return the universe to its natural order in an act of self-sacrifice.

CAST:

Brünnhilde - Nina Stemme
Siegfried - Ian Storey
Gunther - Gerd Grochowski
Hagen - Andrea Silvestrelli
Waltraute & Second Norn - Daveda Karanas
Gutrune - Melissa Citro
Alberich - Gordon Hawkins
First Norn - Ronnita Miller
Third Norn - Heidi Melton

CONDUCTOR: Donald Runnicles
STAGE DIRECTOR: Francesca Zambello
SAN FRANCISCO OPERA ORCHESTRA & CHORUS
CHORUS DIRECTOR: Ian Robertson

The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Comments [22]

The 1st complete Ring was in 1876, I think that's less than 200 yrs. Sunday, December 4, 2011 at 8:00pm Pacific Time on KDFC & you can listen to the complete SFO performance .

Nov. 14 2011 08:01 PM
william pagenkopf from flushing, ny

discusting. If you knew you didn't have the end of Gotterdammerung you could have told us.
if not, get some professional help.
Also settle on how composers names are to be pronounced.
Not really interested in your announcers opinions, they are announcers that tell us what they like. Your an announcer not a critic of 200 year old music!

Nov. 12 2011 08:56 AM

Bitte Schön. Es war meine Freude. Alle sollen Götterdämmerung die "Rache Trio" hören. Hope you enjoy it.

Nov. 06 2011 02:51 PM
L. Lubin from Fort Lee, NJ

Nun sei bedankt, mein lieber Cavanaugh!

Nov. 06 2011 09:26 AM

Remember, that's 8 PM PACIFIC TIME.
If u can't find it, go to the San Fran Opera page & there's a link to KDFC.
Hopefully, they have the entire opera, including the "Rache Trio".

Nov. 06 2011 01:18 AM

Oh, sorry. I didn't mean to leave you hanging. Sunday, December 4, 2011
at 8:00pm on KDFC Götterdämmerung Richard Wagner
Nina Stemme, Ian Storey, Gerd Grochowski, Andrea Silvestrelli, Daveda Karanas, Melissa Citro, Gordon Hawkins, Ronnita Miller, Heidi Melton, Stacey Tappan, Lauren McNeese and Renée Tatum; directed by Francesca Zambello; conducted by Donald Runnicles. Recorded Summer 2011 as part four of the San Francisco Opera presentation of the complete Ring of the Nibelung cycle, War Memorial Opera House. Enjoy !!!!

Nov. 06 2011 01:12 AM
L. Lubin from Fort Lee, NJ

please, Please PLEASE what is your other source?

Nov. 05 2011 06:41 PM

Somebody goofed. There was no "Rache Trio". Good thing I have another source for this performance.

Nov. 05 2011 05:26 PM
concetta nardone from Elmont, NY

I did get the complete opera broadcast. Turned it on just in time for the Funeral Music and Immolation. The Funeral Music should have been used for the funeral at the end of the film The Vikings. This was a great wallow of a film starring Kirk Douglas, Tony Curtis, Ernest Borgnine and the extremely beautiful Janet Leigh. Plus the cinematography of Jack Cardiff. Some of you out there might be too young to have seen this great film. Filmed in Norway. Understand God received the award that year for best scenic design.

Nov. 05 2011 05:24 PM
L. Lubin from Fort Lee, NJ

Janet, I think you would have liked it a lot better if you'd been allowed to hear the last ten minutes of act two!

Nov. 05 2011 05:20 PM
Janet in NYC from Manhattan

I am loving every moment of this superb broadcast of Götterdämmerung! Thank you WQXR for making it available to us this afternoon.

Nov. 05 2011 05:05 PM
L. Lubin from Fort Lee, NJ

Really? This is where your second act ends? REALLY? I can't count the number of Götterdämmerungs I've heard on this station over the forty years I've been listening, all of which started earlier to accommodate its length. Impossible to believe you were given an incomplete feed by WFMT or the SFO. This has been one of the best RINGs I've ever heard and you have ruined the memory for me.

But I shouldn't expect any better from NY Public Radio. I was burned twenty years ago when they dismantled WNYC's classical programming six months after their first membership drive after the city sold the station. Now, a week after a fund drive you prove again that marketing is more important than music, the listeners don't really matter, and you don't have to apologize for anything.

If WQXR ever went a year without obvious weekly, or even daily, demonstrations of their subservience to PR and marketing interests, I might consider becoming a member again. But I can think of more gratifying ways to waste money.

Nov. 05 2011 04:48 PM
DKern from NYC

Sorry, not interested in getting into an argument. Personally love all of the "Ring" (but "Siegfried" least). Very little in opera I don't like (but Glass, really?). Everyone gets a little of what they want on the broadcasts. Consider us lucky to have been treated to the entire San Francisco cycle. But, what happened to this broadcast? "Sorry but that's where the recording ends" in the middle of today's opera?

Nov. 05 2011 04:10 PM

Has anyone seen this production? Why all the laughter in Act II? This is probably the most evil & foreboding music ever written. Most of it is in the "F" clef. No humor there.

Nov. 05 2011 03:18 PM

I agree, I never called anyone a "lightweight". An exchange of ideas is good for opera but not the name calling.

Nov. 05 2011 03:10 PM
concetta nardone from Elmont, NY

Mr. Cavanaugh,
An exchange of ideas is always good as long as it does not lead to referring to people who disagree as "lightweights".

Nov. 05 2011 03:07 PM

Allow those of us who enjoy Wagner revel in this grand music. Why argue? Some love olives, some don't. No one forces you to eat them. Verdi, Puccini, R. Strauss, Bellini - all are wonderful. GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG sits atop the mountain alone. No one orders you to climb it, but what a climb! Enjoy. Exchange ideas if you will but the music is tremendous & I'll enjoy every note.

Nov. 05 2011 01:33 PM
concetta nardone from Elmont, NY

Julian,
Must also add that I would go every week to the library and take out the score for the weekly broadcast from the Met Opera. Would read along with it. The NBC Symphony conducted by Toscanini was also regularly listened to. I was in my early teens. So, I am not a lightweight. Don't let my bluecollar background lead you to believe that working class people do not love Wagner. And please do not stereotype me because my last name ends in a vowel. My father who worked on the trolley lines also loved Wagner despite having been born and raised under the shadow of Vesuvius. Maybe this might bother some people who think we are unable to love the beautiful things in life. Hope I have not started a kerfufel.

Nov. 05 2011 01:23 PM
Concetta Nardone from Elmont, NY

No Julian, I am not a lightweight when it comes to Wagner. Siegfried is also long but it is wonderful. And I sing along with some of it as I have read the score. I think I might be a bit more honest than some classical music lovers who are afraid to say they do not like a particular piece. Instead they say they love everything but really do not. They might be afraid of being thought of as "uncultured". I try to be honest.

Nov. 05 2011 11:24 AM
Julian from Manhattan

Sorry, but it sounds like the two commenters above are just lightweights - to each his own. You can always play your own music if you don't like what's on, or maybe, you might find out eventually why some are so passionate about it - it took me some time. You have to get completely involved (Gesamtkunstwerk cuts both ways), it's not good as background music. As for the first commenter, Goetterdaemerung is only a bit longer than Siegfried. I question your "love of Wagner."

Nov. 05 2011 11:09 AM
Concetta Nardone from Elmont, NY

Now I love Wagner but not this one. Especially like Siegfried and Das Rheingold. I understand the CIA will use this opera during Enhanced Interrogation. Believe me, detainees will talk. Just remove Rhine Journey, Funeral Music and Immolation during the questionning. This damn opera is more than five hours long.

Nov. 05 2011 09:22 AM
Judith from Boston, MA

As much as I can understand the desire to produce the Ring cycle in its entirety, it leaves those of us who intensely, or not, dislike Wagner's music deprived of opera on Saturday afternoons for a month. Is there a happy medium to be found?

Nov. 05 2011 07:21 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.