The young blacksmith Siegfried, who, not knowing that he is heir to a conquered kingdom, becomes popular with the Burgunds by slaying their bane, the dragon Fafnir. When the reward seems to... See full summary »
'Das Rheingold' tells the story about Alberich's theft of the gold from the Rhine, the forging of the Ring of power and sets off a cascade of events that further develop in the subsequent operas of the Ring Cycle.
Siegfried, son of King Sigmund, hears of the beautiful sister of Gunter, King of Worms, Kriemhild. On his way to Worms, he kills a dragon and finds a treasure, the Hort. He helps Gunther to... See full summary »
A production of these operas for the Met has to tick certain boxes, many marked entertainment. As a result, the production design, though lavish, tends to be a faithful translation of Wagner's stated intentions. Which is fine.
Into this situation comes the leading Heldentenor of the time, Siegfried Jerusalem (so much irony in a single name). He's really quite brilliant giving the audience even more than they bargained for. Great singing, a youthful joie de vivre and jokes. The relationship with Graham Clark's excellent Mime is surely not meant to be quite such a riotous double-act but the opening act trips along brilliantly.
The fun doesn't stop as he continues to play the wide-eyed bumpkin through the second to the confrontation of the third. By the time it all descends into the 'seriousness' of sexual awakening 'inverted commas' hold no fear because there's nothing to mock.
A unique standard bearer in the Met cycle. 5/10
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