Brunnhilde’s Immolation Scene

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Continuing my series of program notes: Richard Wagner (1813-1883) Götterdämmerung: ‘Starke scheite…’ (Brünnhilde’s Immolation Scene) ‘Let great logs be brought to the bank and heaped in a mighty pile. Let the flames…consume the noble corpse of this first of all men.’ So sings Brünnhilde in the spectacular end not only to Wagner’s Götterdämmerung, but his […]

Love-death and Isolde’s Transfiguration

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Continuing my series of program notes: Richard Wagner (1813-1883) Tristan und Isolde: Prelude and Liebestod It is ironic that Tristan und Isolde was written while Wagner took a break from what would become his epic 15-hour masterpiece, The Ring of the Nibelung. Tristan, first staged in 1865, is itself a pinnacle of music history. In […]