Aug 17

Parsifal, Dir. Horst Stein, Bayreuther Festspiele ????

This is actually an excellent production of Parsifal, with both an excellent recording and excellent video, as well as excellent acting and singing. It is staged in a traditional style, with conformity with probable original staging instructions. Why only four stars? This is probably one of my preferred video versions of Parsifal? Well, Parsifal has a rather stupid plot (sorry, Richard W.). The music is awesome. It is one of those few operas that is best heard and not seen. Perhaps this is an opera where bizarre staging might make for better visualization. It’s one that Peter Sellars or Doris Dorrie should attack. Other versions of Parsifal that I own include the Levine/Met Opera version, that has better staging and also using the absolutely superb Wagnerian signer Siegfried Jersusalem for Parsifal, a film with opera dubbing by Syberberg, nice and effective, but with odd staging, and a CD version with Karajan, which is indisputably the best conducted recording of this opera.

 

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