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Don't be scared of Wagner
Daily Telegraph ^ | 5/20/2013 | Sameer Rahim

Posted on 05/21/2013 11:56:02 AM PDT by Borges

Wednesday marks 200 years since the birth of Richard Wagner, the most violently controversial musician in history. His Italian contemporary Verdi – born in the same year – is acknowledged as a genius for all time. But Wagner, though he has the more passionate advocates, also has the most determined detractors. Why, they complain, are his operas so heavy-sounding, so terribly long, so full of weird mythical figures? In short: why are they so German?

When I started going to the opera not so long ago, I was asked which work had drawn me to the art form. Perhaps people expected me to say a lyrical Rossini or delightful Mozart, because I got funny looks when I said it was Wagner’s final opera, Parsifal – the six-hour epic based on medieval legend, featuring the Holy Grail and a castrated sorcerer. “Oh,” said one woman I met, “don’t tell me you’re becoming one of those Wagnerians?” She could barely hide her distaste.

What I loved about Parsifal was that transcendent music was allied to superb drama. Parsifal, an innocent knight, battles his way into a sorcerer’s lair in order to rescue a holy spear. To succeed, he must reject the sexual temptation of the flower maidens who, like the Sirens of Greek mythology, send many a knight to his doom. It might sound a touch silly, but in an age when we’re happy to read deep meanings into fantasies such as The Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones, ­surely we can be open-minded about Wagner’s plots?

A bigger problem is the Nazi associations.

(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Music/Entertainment
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1 posted on 05/21/2013 11:56:02 AM PDT by Borges
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To: .30Carbine; 1cewolf; 1rudeboy; 31R1O; ADemocratNoMore; afraidfortherepublic; alarm rider; ...

Classical Ping


2 posted on 05/21/2013 11:57:34 AM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

For trivia buffs, Wagner died in the building that now houses the Venice Casino.


3 posted on 05/21/2013 12:01:00 PM PDT by rfp1234 (Arguing with a marxist is like playing Chess with a Pigeon.)
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To: Borges

Truth be told, “Entry of the Guests” from Tannhauser is about as good as it gets.


4 posted on 05/21/2013 12:03:02 PM PDT by Colonel_Flagg (Blather. Reince. Repeat.)
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To: Colonel_Flagg

I have always liked Wagner, but then again, I am a sucker for sappy, sentimental music (according to my wife).


5 posted on 05/21/2013 12:05:48 PM PDT by Arkansas Toothpick
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To: Borges

I’m weird.

I LIKE Wagner! LOL!

But I also like led Zeppelin, the Stones, Berlioz, Beethoven, Verdi, B.B. King, etc etc etc.

Many years ago, the Ring was broadcast on PBS for several nights running.

I watched EVERY minute of it! LOL!


6 posted on 05/21/2013 12:06:05 PM PDT by left that other site ((Ban the ubiquitous and deadly solvent, Di-hydrogen monoxide!!!))
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To: Borges
Well for a start on Wagner, try

Anna Russell on 'Der Ring'

7 posted on 05/21/2013 12:06:36 PM PDT by eCSMaster ("God bless Planned Parenthood"- B.H.Obama, 2013)
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To: eCSMaster

“She’s his aunt!”


8 posted on 05/21/2013 12:07:32 PM PDT by eCSMaster ("God bless Planned Parenthood"- B.H.Obama, 2013)
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To: Borges

I high school music class, we had to do a report on a composer. This was to be an oral report in front of the class.

I told the teacher I wanted to do Wagner, thinking his name sounded alot less foreign that the other composers, and I might be able to understand him. My teacher signed me up, without even correcting me on the pronunciation.

The little jerk was going to let me get up in front of the class as pronounce his name wrong. Luckily somebody corrected me before it got to that.

Anyway, I’ll never forget Wagner.


9 posted on 05/21/2013 12:17:06 PM PDT by lacrew (Mr. Soetoro, we regret to inform you that your race card is over the credit limit.)
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To: Borges

To paraphrase a VW commercial years ago - “German composing is in the house!”


10 posted on 05/21/2013 12:18:09 PM PDT by Resolute Conservative
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To: Borges

As a former horn player, Sigfried’s theme, Til euilenspiegel, Tchaikovsky 4 (the opening), and the chorus from Mahler’s 1st, and any or the Gabrielli Canzoni, are near the tippy top of the musical food chain.....for french horn!

Yeah, left some stuff out, but the initial meme is Herr Wagner...

KYPD


11 posted on 05/21/2013 12:19:19 PM PDT by petro45acp (It's a fabian thing.....how do you boil a frog? How's that water feelin right about now?)
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To: Borges

It has been said that Wagner would wear white gloves to conduct music written by Jewish composers, then remove them after the performance, throwing them on the stage to have them swept up later.


12 posted on 05/21/2013 12:20:02 PM PDT by windsorknot
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To: Borges; a fool in paradise
In Before...


13 posted on 05/21/2013 12:20:21 PM PDT by Revolting cat! (Bad things are wrong! Ice cream is delicious!)
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To: Arkansas Toothpick

Your wife thinks Wagner is sappy and sentimental?


14 posted on 05/21/2013 12:20:52 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Revolting cat!

http://www.johnspeedie.com/healy/lovely.wav


15 posted on 05/21/2013 12:26:02 PM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: petro45acp

French horn? Don’t forget the Largo of Dvorak’s 9th!


16 posted on 05/21/2013 12:29:11 PM PDT by mozarky2 (Ya never stand so tall as when ya stoop to stomp a statist!)
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To: Borges

Wagner’s genius has a lasting appeal: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ll4qS4anGo

Excalibur’s symphonic ending


17 posted on 05/21/2013 12:33:16 PM PDT by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: Borges

“I’m told that Wagner’s music is much better than it sounds” - Mark Twain


18 posted on 05/21/2013 12:35:38 PM PDT by Hardastarboard (Buck Off, Bronco Bama)
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To: mozarky2

Or Mozart’s Horn Concerto.

But back to Wagner, “Siegfried’s Funeral March” is awesome. John Williams borrowed heavily from Wagner for his “Star Wars” suite.


19 posted on 05/21/2013 12:35:44 PM PDT by IronJack (=)
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To: Arkansas Toothpick

“I love the sound of Wagner in the morning”

“Sounds like.....victory!”


20 posted on 05/21/2013 12:36:33 PM PDT by RedMonqey ("Gun-free zones" equal "Target-rich environment.")
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