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Thread: A Wagner Item For Continued TC Reading Delectation...

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    Default A Wagner Item For Continued TC Reading Delectation...

    A composer whose controversy seems set to endure

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-22461400

    Enjoy.

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    Senior Member SiegendesLicht's Avatar
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    Before ever opening that link, let me guess what it is about... that Wagner was an antisemite and that his operas were misused by the Nazis? Am I right?
    ... yet for us will still remain the holy German art... (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg)
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    Beloved over all.
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    Senior Member EricABQ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiegendesLicht View Post
    Before ever opening that link, let me guess what it is about... that Wagner was an antisemite and that his operas were misused by the Nazis? Am I right?
    Not quite. But it does involve nazis.

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    I think that man is sick. He should be in therapy instead of staging Wagner opera. Unless he is simply trying to get revenge on Wagner for some reason.

    And what does "Head of Dusseldorf's Jewish community" have to do with all of this.
    ... yet for us will still remain the holy German art... (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg)
    ***
    God gave all men all earth to love,
    But since our hearts are small,
    Ordained for each one spot should prove
    Beloved over all.
    R. Kipling

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    Senior Member EricABQ's Avatar
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    I read the article but I can't tell if I'm supposed to be offended or not. So, I'll stick with my default position of "not offended."

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    Senior Member ahammel's Avatar
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    What is it about Wagner that causes theatre directors to go insane?

    What has Tannhäuser got to do with the Holocaust? Where would they even shoehorn in the execution scenes? For that matter, what does Tannhäuser have to do with bioethics? What does Lohengrin have to do with that thing with the rats? What does Meistersinger have to do with…whatever this is?

    Is it too much to ask that if you're staging a production of a Wagner opera, you actually stage a production of a Wagner opera, as opposed to staging something completely different with Wagner's music in it?

    Does this happen to other people's operas? I've certainly never heard of anybody going to a production of Aïda only to discover that the director had decided that he'd rather put on a dark portrayal of the horrors of the modern prison system. I've never been to a Zauberflöte that was inexplicably Godwined. Did Eduard Hanslick put a curse on Wagner that attracts crazy theatre directors, or what?

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    Senior Member Ukko's Avatar
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    Default Dusseldorf

    This article is about an unfortunately 'sensational' example of the perils inherent in re-staging an opera to represent events unrelated to the original.

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/...-a-898937.html

    I don't understand the why behind the staging, nor the traumas caused by it. Do you?
    I spent a fortune on deodorant before I realized that people don't like me anyway.

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    Senior Member ahammel's Avatar
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    Perhaps this should be merged?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hilltroll72 View Post
    I don't understand the why behind the staging, nor the traumas caused by it. Do you?
    Do I understand the staging? No. Do I understand why people would be upset at attending something they believe to be Tannhäuser, only to discover that it's actually "The Kindly Ones:The Musical!"? Yes.

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    Senior Member SiegendesLicht's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ahammel View Post
    What is it about Wagner that causes theatre directors to go insane?
    I'll just quote my own post in another thread on the same subject:

    I don't know all that much about other opera than Wagner, but it hurts me as well to see some of the things the stage directors do to him. Personally I think there are two reasons for that. Some people simply want to become famous by shocking their audience (that seems to be the idea behind much of the modern art). But some people, I am convinced, really loathe Wagner's art in their hearts. The Christian symbolism of Tannhäuser and Parsifal, the Teutonic mythology of Der Ring, the settings of medieval German history in Lohengrin and Die Meistersinger - to them all of that is, as you say, reactionary, dangerous, disturbing and uncool. That is why they need to bring Wagner down from his lofty heights into the realm of the ridiculous, make the audience laugh instead of being enchanted and awestruck by those dangerous and reactionary operas. That is why King Heinrich and the people of Brabant are replaced with rats, the medieval Nürnberg with an American-Idol-style show and the castle of Wartburg with some sort of a chemical factory. Ah yes, and the idea of a woman dying together with her man is hopelessly sexist, that's why in one staging Brünnhilde gives birth to a baby and walks around in blood-stained gown instead.

    If I have not made my meaning clear enough, here:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2011...g-glyndebourne

    is a review of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, evidently written by just such a person. If you have ever heard Die Meistersinger, you know that it is the most joyful, humorous, light, warm-hearted and human of all Wagner's operas, and yet the author describes it as negative, disturbing, alarming, having a dark side etc - all these things existing only in his own imagination.
    ... yet for us will still remain the holy German art... (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg)
    ***
    God gave all men all earth to love,
    But since our hearts are small,
    Ordained for each one spot should prove
    Beloved over all.
    R. Kipling

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    Com'on!!!!

    Which bunch of idiots would allowed such thing????????? Wagnerian opera in Germany with Third Reich motifs?????????? You'd have to be really stupid (with an IQ below 10) to come up with such... (i'd rather keep my mouth shut)

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    Senior Member ahammel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dionisio View Post
    Com'on!!!!

    Which bunch of idiots would allowed such thing????????? Wagnerian opera in Germany with Third Reich motifs?????????? You'd have to be really stupid (with an IQ below 10) to come up with such... (i'd rather keep my mouth shut)
    It's happened before with the Ring, if I'm not mistaken.

    Not that I disagree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ahammel View Post
    It's happened before with the Ring, if I'm not mistaken.

    Not that I disagree.
    Nevertheless, the stupidity remains.

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    Senior Member SiegendesLicht's Avatar
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    These people actually believe that what they are doing is "progressive", "relevant" and "up-to-date" art, as opposed to dusty traditional stagings that only belong in a museum. What a shame!
    ... yet for us will still remain the holy German art... (Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg)
    ***
    God gave all men all earth to love,
    But since our hearts are small,
    Ordained for each one spot should prove
    Beloved over all.
    R. Kipling

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    Quote Originally Posted by ahammel View Post
    What is it about Wagner that causes theatre directors to go insane?

    What has Tannhäuser got to do with the Holocaust? Where would they even shoehorn in the execution scenes? For that matter, what does Tannhäuser have to do with bioethics? What does Lohengrin have to do with that thing with the rats? What does Meistersinger have to do with…whatever this is?

    Is it too much to ask that if you're staging a production of a Wagner opera, you actually stage a production of a Wagner opera, as opposed to staging something completely different with Wagner's music in it?

    Does this happen to other people's operas? I've certainly never heard of anybody going to a production of Aïda only to discover that the director had decided that he'd rather put on a dark portrayal of the horrors of the modern prison system. I've never been to a Zauberflöte that was inexplicably Godwined. Did Eduard Hanslick put a curse on Wagner that attracts crazy theatre directors, or what?
    I'm afraid it's not just Wagner whose work suffers from the idiot productions. I saw an Aida on TV which bore little resemblance to what Verdi intended. Now it is good sometimes for a producer to try and bring an original slant. But it should be at least in harmony with what the composer intended. What we have to do is producers of little talents who feel they know better than the great composers who actually wrote the thing in the first place. These producers make the mistake of trying to make the composer serve their (often daft) ideas. Of course the producer should be the servant of the composer, the genius who wrote the thing. Also he should serve the audience who are paying money to see the production. But no these egotists think everyone should serve them and their own bizarre vision of what they mistakenly think art is about.
    The gentleman who produced Tannhäuser has a problem when he uses the word artistic license simply because he has no artistic merit to take licence with!

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    I will say I'm a bit mystified to see so much discussion of Wagner's "ties" to Nazis. What surprises me more is the thought that those who adore opera would not strive to bring Wagner to other opera lovers in the most positive light. I can understand trying to put a new spin on works that have been performed countless times, but why add strong negative aspects to what otherwise is such glorious music? I suppose controversy can yield more profits.

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