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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Always controversial.
Why do you like it or hate it?

It's sometimes called the greatest opera ever.

What makes it so compelling?
It really grabs me. Those chords opening Act 3 , sounding and wafting upwards always grip me.

What are it's meanings? What is its power? Is the power of the potion real or just an excuse?

What makes it the iconic work that it is on a musical and psychological level?
Wagner said a truly great performance would drive you mad.
Conductors have died conducting it. Karajan said he needed to come up with another way to conduct it.

Lovers of this opera.............let's talk Tristan.:)
:tiphat:
 

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I thought the potion was real because of the sudden reversal in their behaviour after they drink it. I suppose that could also be that thinking they were going to die they wanted to get their feelings off their chests.

Seen the opera twice,first time I thought it was overly long, kind of boring and full of large drab and grey looking people being very shouty/loud. Second time was a concert performance of the opera (BBC prom), no sets or costumes which meant I could just focus on the opera which I think helped. I actually liked it second time round it wasn't particularly emotionally engaging but it made me think (I have no idea about what, it was 2 years ago) it was definitely interesting and thought producing. Anyway I was bumbling along thinking this is nice and then Wham! Liebestod. The entire opera was leading up to that moment it was the perfect culmination, I felt I was physically riding on this wave of music, absolutely beautiful.

I can see why people don't like it though, it is long and while engaging enough not enthralling till the end. I like it at any rate, looking forward to seeing it again someday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)

Amazing............
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just think its incredible.
The prelude, Isolde's scene on the ship, the love duet and duel, the opening of act 3 with the clarinet or whatever it is, Tristans mad scene and then the liebestod.

amazing...............
.
 

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The part in Act 2 where Tristan makes his entrance thrills me every time. Wagner is a master of suspense, and he uses long sequences to accomplish this. Other favorite moments for me are the Prelude (obviously!), the end of Act One, the part in Act 2 when Branganae sings from the tower and the lovers' duet, and last but not least, the Liebestod. The latter is quite possibly the most transcendent music I have ever heard.
 

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I just think its incredible.
The prelude, Isolde's scene on the ship, the love duet and duel, the opening of act 3 with the clarinet or whatever it is, Tristans mad scene and then the liebestod.

amazing...............
.
That is an English horn I believe. It's supposed to sound like a shepherd's pipe, doesn't really, but who cares?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
That is an English horn I believe. It's supposed to sound like a shepherd's pipe, doesn't really, but who cares?
It's so atmospheric..........
 

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For more recent recordings this one is a classic despite the fact that hate Domingo for Wagner singing:

Poster Font Movie Music Entertainment
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
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I saw it staged twice, both times at La Scala.
The first time when I was a teenager, C. Kleiber conducting. I was with my grandma and unfortunately I cannot remember much of that evening :(
Then, some years ago, Daniel Barenboim conducting, Waltraud Meier singing Isolde. A Patrice Chereau's production.
I was thrilled from the beginning to the end, and particurarly during the liebestod when Meier/Isolde started bleeding as if the trascendent and unbereable grief had been leaving a tangible sign in her body.


In this video, at the very end someone in the audience just ruined everything. Luckily not in the evening I was there...
 

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I put on the prelude this afternoon conducted by Furtwangler. Yes, the power of the music is pretty overwhelming.

Versions I have:
Karajan 1952 is an overwhelming experience white hot live with Modl and Vinay and Hotter terrific. the recording is, of course, dated. But to me this is the best performance.

Furtwangler has to be heard for the conducting although Flagstad was frankly a bit past it by that stage.

Bohm is too monochromatic for my taste - too little light and shade and Windgassen sounds very thin. Nilsson's power has to be heard but you can't love her.

Kleiber is a bit of a microphone job but who cares? It blows the cobwebs off and Price is a stunning Isolde even if Kollo is very rough round the edges.

Karajan / BPO is a marvel of orchestral playing but there are decidedly odd balances. Karajan is as different from his live version as can be. Vickers is absolutely superb and I can actually love Dernech's Isolde although that has come in for much criticism. To me she sounds very much like Modl on Karajan 1.

So not a perfect Tristan available on CD which is not a surprise as it probably doesn't exist.
 

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It's pretty much the musical equivalent of crack cocaine. The endless harmonic suspension and longing is enough to drive anybody insane, and when relief finally does come at the end of the Lebestod, it is brief, and almost immediately the hunger grows again for those mystical opening chords of the Act I Prelude....
 

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Tristan und Isolde is the greatest art work of the 19th century. It is so insane, crazy, it pushes to the limit the artists, musicians and audience.

When heard live, "O sink, hernieder, Nacht der Liebe" is one of the few pieces of music that can rip a hole in the space time continuim. Listening to this live is the equivalent of falling into the Stargate in 2001.

 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
It does seem to suspend time.............
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I always get tears in my eyes at the end.
 
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