Stopping the Clocks With Strauss' 'Der Rosenkavalier'

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Elīna Garanča as Octavian and Renée Fleming as the Marschallin in Strauss's Der Rosenkavalier.

Richard Strauss' Der Rosenkavalier is an opera about the passage of time — what it means to grow older, what we lose and what we gain as the years pass, and how we know when it's time to let go of the people that we love.

Mezzo-soprano Elīna Garanča knows all about letting go, because after singing the role of Octavian for 17 years, she is giving her final performance as the passionate count this week. But Garanča has no regrets. She's learned to appreciate her life by accepting, and even enjoying, the passage of time. 

Elīna Garanča as Octavian and Erin Morley as Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier: 

This episode features excerpts from the following albums:

Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier (Decca, 2009)
— Renée Fleming, soprano; Sophie Koch, mezzo-soprano; Diana Damrau, soprano; Munich Philharmonic conducted by Christian Thielemann

Strauss: Der Rosenkavalier (Deutsche Grammophon, 2010)
— Diana Damrau, soprano; Elīna Garanča, mezzo-soprano; Staatskapelle Dresden conducted by Fabio Luisi