The Valkyrie, Wagner, at the Theatre Royal

The Valkyrie
The Valkyrie
Richard Wagner (1813 – 1883)
First day in three acts of the scenic festival
The Ring of the Nibelung
Libretto by Richard Wagner
Teatro Real in Madrid 14 February of 2020
D. musical: Pablo Heras-Casado
Conception: Robert Carsen, Patrick Klinmonth
D. scene: Robert Carsen
Escenógrafo y costume: Patrick Klinmonth
illuminator: Manfred Voss
Distribution: Christopher Ventris, Ain Agner, James Rutherford, Elisabet Strid, Ingela Brimberg, Daniela Sindram, Julie Davies, Samantha Crawford, Sandra Fernández, Bernadett Fodor, Daniela Köhler, Heike Grötzinger, Marifé Nogales y Rosie Aldridge
W agner began work on Die Walküre while giving the finishing touches to the orchestration of Das Rheingol. from Zurich, where he had taken refuge fleeing from the German police for his revolutionary activities, lived quiet, dedicated to his compositions and one of her new hobbies, long walks through the Alps Suizos.Es precisely this contact with nature one of the inspiring elements of the work of the German composer. And Norse mythology and complexity of relations between gods and humans, the thread of his musical universe.

Roger Scruton says in his book The ring of truth: "The battle between Hunding and Siegmund returns us with maximum intensity the old idea that, when we, mortals, We fought for what really matters to us, immortals fight with us, pursuing their own goals ".

"The Valkyrie", La Valquiria, It is the first day of the tetralogy "The Ring of the Nibelung the" who began representing last season with "Das Rheingol", Rheingold, and that will be continued the next two seasons with Siegfried and Gotterdammerung I. A work of elephantine dimensions in which Wagner invested 25 years of work to create 15 Always hours of contemporary music.

Valkyrie is perhaps the most important work of this tetralogy, taking into account their structure and musical discourse, completely different from that of the Rhine Gold and demonstrating a clear musical and dramatic evolution. It took 18 months to complete its composition. It may seem a long time, but listening to this play can take the measure of their true and enormous artistic dimension. An architectural work, full of complexities to build an orchestration of great strength that moves away from any fugacidad.

He had devised an orchestra of some hitherto unknown dimensions. Enter instruments, as snorkels Wagnerist, and others barely used hitherto. Changes the traditional way of working with the orchestra, rather than do it by families of instruments, It transforms it into a chamber orchestra, where any instrument can be combined with the following, does not belong to the same family. Creates and contemporary sound.

The Valkyries also provides developments in the dramatic aspects. The characters have a greater psychological depth and Wagner associated with each of them an orchestral motif that defines him, he leitmotiv, another revolution. Is The Valkyrie, which it has the most elaborate score and interpreted tetralogy, where the protagonists show their human side, even being gods, and they distance themselves from mythology. Heras-Casado says "What makes music Wagner is converted into a complex emotional moment of an individual, and it must build all a sound building ".

And the most perfect with which Wagner expressly these psychological depths, with similar dimensions orchestra, It is not the volume and density sound, but the delicacy and sophistication of most intimate moments of the work. Duets between Sieglinde and Siegmund Wotan and Brünnhilde or between or, especially, the end of the opera, They are an extreme subtlety that seems endless and can only be achieved with this great orchestra, These six harps, Not one less.

Pablo Heras-Casado, by Robert Carsen, They are responsible for carrying out all the tetralogy. It can be seen the evolution of the orchestra, hand of its director, He has had from the Rhine Gold last season. Heras-Casado has decided to focus on the human and psychological part of the musical description. After an initial storm somewhat intemperate, He was working with meticulousness and extracting the orchestra sound quality.

The best moments came with scenes of greater intimacy and delicacy. The meticulousness of the Grenadian Director reached its peak in the interludes and the scene where the Valkyries rescue the dead warriors to bring them to the Valhalla, auinque winds took some freedom. From here everything was gaining in intensity, musicality and drama, They are culminating in end seductive spellfire. After nearly five hours of opera, you keep wanting more. If this is the first ring of the Pablo Heras-Casado, I want to hear when you already take a few back to.

Robert Carsen's staging begins with snow, and retaking the end of the Gold of the Rhine. It is elegant, but desolating. Only the snow adorns a first act that seems to be the haunt of smugglers of weapons. Perhaps Wagner would have liked this inhospitable decorated. Certainly not distracted from the main element, what is music.

The second act is located in what is supposed to be the castle of Wotan. A spacious and luxurious living room guarded by military. one Wotan appears different to that of the Gold of the Rhine, which he seemed a little military rank or come unless. This time, It has a higher rank and authority.

The third act is the most accomplished, remains bleak but with a different atmosphere and a fire end reminiscent. His strong start, Ride of the Valkyries, and soldiers path Valhalla, They make a beautiful scene full force.

In this cold scenery, While some issues solved and not so, it should be noted lighting Manfred Voss, that masterfully creates environments with little scenic elements.

As for the voices, I liked them more than they.

Wotan of James Rutherford showed his human side, first defeated before the authority of Fricka and then, to their daughters, the Valkyries. Too bad her beautiful timbre was not enough to offset the shortage of volume of your voice.

Christopher Ventris served as heroic Siegmund. He had his difficulties with sharp but the British tenor has extensive experience with Wagnerian roles, especially Parsifal.

The BRÜNNHILDE Ingela Brimberg has a penetrating sharp and well ring and a volume more remarkable. It can also boast serious dense and compact. He shined in the interpretive section, with emphasis on human weaknesses rather than supernatural qualities that you would expect his character.

Sieglinde was performed by Elisabet Strid, well versed in the role for a lyric spinto required. strife, with a powerful center and a sharp clean and well delineated, It is a very good Sieglinde. voluminous voice that knew also put the service of the most lyrical duets with her husband and brother . He showed great acting ability.

The Valkyries were performed by Julie Davis (Gerhilde), Samantha Crawford (Ortlinde), Sandra Fernández (Waltraute), Bernadett Fodor (Schwertleite), Daniela Köhjer (Helmwgide), Heike Grötzinger (Siegrune), Marifé Nogales (Vloaz) y Rosie Aldridge (Rossweise). They performed very well with his role, without stopping a moment on stage. They staged some of the best numbers, Ride of the Valkyries and the resurrection of the warriors. And all, despite having been in uniform with a homespun batita.

Fricka very well Daniela Sindram, with its interpretive nuances. Splendid in its second act monologue.

Estonian bass Ain Anger outlined a magnificent Hunding vocally and great stage presence.

It seems that the effort involved in a production like this in successive seasons is meeting goals. Best of all is the expectation that generates. I'm already looking forward to the next chapter next season.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real

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