Bayreuth 2014 Cast Lists & General Dress Rehearsal Dates

Somewhat disappointingly, this year’s Bayreuth program is virtually the same as the festival’s 2013 installment. It would have been nice to see Stefan Herheim’s Parsifal given one final revival before the hotly-awaited Jonathan Meese staging that will premiere in 2016. Oh well, we can always hope for next season. Here are the recently-announced general rehearsal dates. Tannhäuser…

Castorf / Petrenko Bayreuth Ring Download Links

Now that the dust has  settled somewhat after the unveiling of Frank Castorf’s much-despised bicentennial Ring Cycle, all indications point to the Russian maestro Kirill Petrenko as the new hero of Bayreuth. In case you missed the radio broadcasts, here are links to mp3 files of the full cycle. The whole kit and kaboodel  weighs…

Bayreuth Festival Confronts Controversial History

I’m posting my report from Bayreuth that appears in this week’s issue of The Forward BAYREUTH On the occasion of Richard Wagner’s bicentennial, the Grüner Hügel, or Green Hill, that is home to the Richard-Wagner-Festspielhaus was littered with 500 multicolored “mini-Wagners” — garden-gnomelike figurines of the composer, hands raised as if ready to conduct. These cute…

Bayreuth Ring Round-Up

Last night, Frank Castorf unveiled part four of his Ring des Nibelungen at the Bayreuther Festspiele. If the early reviews are any indication, this may be the most hated Ring in the history of the festival. “Boos, Boos and More Boos Greet Director of Bayreuth ‘Ring,’” screams the headline of Catherine Hickley’s review in Bloomberg…

First Look: Götterdämmerung on Wall Street

Gordon Gekko’s maxim “Greed is Good” is diametrically opposed to what happens in the fourth and final installment of the Ring Cycle, Götterdämmerung, so we’re quite intrigued to see how Frank Castorf’s Götterdämmerung on Wall Street plays out. The premiere isn’t until tomorrow evening. However, judging from these productions stills that Intermezzo was kind enough to…

Siegfried Production Stills

Our friends at Intermezzo have posted a wonderful selection of production stills from Frank Castorf’s Bayreuth Siegfried. The production had its premiere last night. Early reports have indicated that Lance Ryan had a hard time in the second act and that Petrenko’s hitherto exciting conducting turned dull in the third act. We’ll have more on that…

The Walküre Report with *PHOTOS*

The Bayreuth Festival curtain went up tonight on the premiere of Frank Castorf’s Walküre premiere.  In one of the first reviews already online, Peter Huth, critic for the Berlin daily B.Z., writes “Hats off to Castorf.” Apparently, the second installment of the Ring was better received that Rheingold, which reportedly was greeted with loud boos on…

Where’s Castorf?

According to this AFP report, Castorf refused to take the stage during last night’s Rheingold curtain call, which met with vociferous boos. There’s always hope that he’ll show next week for Götterdämmerung… Agence France Presse Controversial German director Frank Castorf refused to show himself at the end of his new staging of Richard Wagner’s “Rhinegold” that premiered…

Bayreuth Press Conference Update

According to the Reuters report from this morning’s Bayreuth Festival press conference, Frank Castorf admitted to having Hitchcock, Tarantino and Jim Morrison on the brain while devising his concept of the Ring Cycle. Although the Wagners are standing by their director, Katharina did strike a somewhat equivocating tone when she said, “It’s not about whether I…

Castorf on Ring: “I’m glad that German fascism didn’t come up”

According to a short report just published by the  German newswire DPA, Frank Castorf, the Ring King of this year’s Bayreuth Festival, doesn’t set out to create a production that addresses Vergangenheitsbewältigung, the cumbersome German word for coming to terms with the Nazi past. Unlike other recent Regie directors who have boldly reinterpreted Wagner for…