I have only managed to see the “Ring Cycle” over several evenings as part of the Edinburgh Theatre Festival, a vampiric marathon of opera totalling 15 hours that leaves you absolutely drained but with the feeling you have been witness to something divine and otherworldly.

However, each quarter of Wagner’s masterpiece is a complete work of brilliance in its own right, and during this season’s production of “Die Walküre” highly acclaimed animated film director Géza M. Tóth continues where “Das Rheingold” finished, and hopefully we will see the remaining two operas of the “Ring Cycle” staged before too long.
One of the main problems faced by newcomers to the opera world is that Wagner is not so immediately accessible; unlike the operas of Puccini or Verdi who guide you seamlessly through the story, Wagner throws you into the hidden forest with no map. Essentially, he makes the audience work to decipher his hidden meanings and symbols, or leitmotifs that flow through his musical score.
The long running times of his operas can also be a great barrier to overcome, but fighting to understand everything in theatre is often counter-productive. As “Die Walküre” is entrenched deep in mythology there will always be inexplicable passages within the opera.
The main goal is to take away something ethereal, beautiful and deeply personal from the production. Yet to try to possess it is like possessing a spirit; chasing the shadow that forever slips through your hands.
Basically, for beginners, Wagner’s “Ring Cycle”, or “Der Ring des Nibelungen”, is set within a medieval legend and centres upon a mythical ring of power, and the struggle of people to possess it. It explores themes of love and earthly power, longing and loss, and took Wagner 25 years to finish.
Conducted by Péter Halász, “Die Walküre” presents a great challenge for directors, musicians and singers but the score is sensational with the notes rousing and dramatic, hitting highs and then falling into lows as the music ebbs and flows like water. Surrender to this extraordinary power, put down the programme and synopsis, and let the music guide you through this land of mythology and stunning beauty.

“Die Walküre”

Hungarian State Opera
Andrássy út 22, Opera House, District VI

Thursday March 3 until Sunday March 20
Tickets and information: www.jegymester.hu/eng

Loading Conversation

The news that made headlines

The Brief History of the Week

Geschrieben von BT

Presenting in one concise package the week’s most important and fascinating national stories,…

ComiX Coffee in District V

Inmates running the asylum?

Geschrieben von Attila Leitner

Briton Ben Innes became the very definition of cool on Tuesday. In case you missed this, the…

Protests, no apologies as government-teachers dispute widens

Fight of the roundtables

Geschrieben von BT

The civil public education platform representing the teachers’ movement, which calls itself an…