Das Opernglas is out with a issue (7/8-2008) loaded with goodies for Wagnerians, and featuring an interview with Herheim talking about his forthcoming Parsifal in Bayreuth. More than any other of Wagner’s works, he says, Parsifal is connected to the Bayreuth Festival and German history. Parsifal is the history of a nation.
Before accepting the offer from Bayreuth, Herheim had turned down an offer from Staatsoper in Berlin to stage Parsifal there. The concept for the Bayreuth production was in a way born then, at least some of the thoughts about it.
The greatest challenge, Herheim says, are the narrative passages when nothing “happens”. And a very important issue is the tempi Bayreuth debutant Daniele Gatti chooses.
One thing seems certain: The auditorium will not be integrated in the production. So at least the conservative Bayreuth audience will have one thing that can ease the pain and anger they most certainly will feel when Herheim presents his unerhörtes Werk.
More interviews in this issue: Erwin Schrott, Maria Guleghina and Saimir Pirgu.
Also in this issue of Das Opernglas you will find reviews of Lohengrin in Saarbrücken, Braunschweig and Nürnberg, Parsifal and Der fliegende Holländer at the Richard Wagner Festival in Wels, Tristan und Isolde in Tallinn, Der fliegende Holländer in Prague, Capriccio in Wien, and Don Carlo in London.
DVDs that being reviewed in this issue: Heiner Müller’s Bayreuth production of Tristan und Isolde, the film version of Der fliegende Holländer from 1974, both released on Deutsche Grammophon.