Der Ring Des Nibelungen

Der Ring des Nibelungen

If you know what that means, and you live in Canada, then you probably know that this week the Canadian Opera Company is performing Wagner’s Ring Cycle in its entirety for the first time in Canada. That’s 20 hours (including much-needed intermissions) of gods and horned maidens over four nights, starting tomorrow. And you can listen to it all on CBC Radio Two via radio, satellite, or internet.

Despite the fact that my sister is an opera singer, I know next to nothing about opera. (Pathetic, I know.) I have seen one full-production opera live (Gounod’s Faust) and it blew me away, but for some reason I never caught the bug. However, I think my interest in literature is making me more susceptible now. Yesterday I heard the briefest of summaries of the Ring Cycle and I was thrilled by the epic scale and mythological power of the story. Now I have to hear it!

Luckily for non-opera buffs, the CBC has put together a thorough (and lovely) web companion complete with summaries of the operas, sound clips, and a link to the librettos (with English translations). The Canadian Opera Company website also has further explanation of the mythological background of the operas. So, who’s with me? Let’s ride with the Valkyries!


6 comments on “Der Ring Des Nibelungen

  1. cam says:

    Oh! Thanks for the links! While I like opera, I'm not much of a Wagnerian. My husband, on the other hand, is a fanatic, has traveled to various cities to see the Ring, and has been known to buy tickets at scalper rates. They really do scalp tickets to opera! I think the same guys that we've seen at the Lyric (Chicago) on Saturday nights with the Need Tickets/Buy Tickets signs, work Soldiers' Field for the Bears games on Sunday! πŸ™‚
    My husband will love listening to this on the internet.

  2. Sylvia says:

    I heard on the radio yesterday that Ring tickets were going for $2200. You certainly get a lot for your money, though.

  3. Dana Huff says:

    My husband is an opera singer, too. My favorite is Madama Butterfly.

  4. Wil Cone says:

    I've heard that Wagner can be a bit much even for opera buffs. I've not seen/heard it myself…

  5. Sylvia says:

    With what I've read so far, I think it's safe to say that Wagner is over the top.

  6. […] died last night of a heart attack. I only became familiar with him last fall when he brought us Canada’s first complete Ring Cycle in Canada’s first opera house, which he was instrumental in building. As I reported at the […]

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