Saturday, July 17, 2010

Bayreuth in non-controversy shock horror

A report on Bayreuth from Irish Times correspondent Derek Scally today sort of missed its own point. "New score at Bayreuth as opera upstages warring Wagners" says the headline, and beneath it "The buzz at the festival is all about the performances for the first time in years". And indeed Scally begins with "For the first time in many years the on-stage action – a Lohengrin premiere and the Bayreuth premiere of star tenor Jonas Kaufmann – has attracted more attention than the off-stage intrigues of the composer’s warring descendants". Well, that's good, you're thinking. This is one (soap) opera that's gone on long enough and it's nice to talk about the music for a change. Unfortunately most of the article's about Gottfried Wagner, Wolfgang's disowned son. (Wolfgang is the grandson of Richard and is also Brunnhilde's uncle and half-brother and husband. Ask Anna Russell.) And in the print issue that picture of Jonas Kaufmann is accompanied by one of Eva and Katharina Wagner, and of course... Winifred Wagner and her chum Adolf Hitler. Sorry, did somebody mention music?

No comments: