Hey, NY Met Opera, Bayreuth is ROFLTAO


11 Years
Apr 28, 2008
SW of Greenwood, INDIANA
I just now got home after enduring THREE hours of Das Rheingold with NO intermission that was broadcast all over the world, including to Bayreuth, Germany.
First, who was that guy who said that he'd seen the previews and believed the Met would outdo the 1976 "standard for all future productions" of the Patrice Chéreau/Pierre Boulez Ring Cycle at Bayreuth (bye-roit), Germany and/or Bayreuth's new 2006 Ring cycle by Dorst. If anyone's thinking that it was Joe Bryant, don't answer that question.
Second, what was the Met thinking during the five years they were spending those millions of dollars to build that 45-ton MACHINE (literally) that was THE set.
Third, could the planners have come up with anything more distracting than the machines dozens of long, 18-inch-wide, steel panels constantly revolving while there was evident performers' fear of falling on/off those panels while sitting, sliding down, trying to walk up them. All those distractions were going on along with Wotan's pasted-down hair always hanging down covering his bad eye. One wanted to tell him to keep his hair from hanging over his face. Get a patch for Pete's sake.
Fourth, who gave somebody poetic license to rewrite the original lyrics/libretto, especially to do it so poorly.
I did enjoy the finale's last ten minutes when all the gods were preparing to and marched over the bridge to enter Walhalla. That was really something to see. Before leaving the theater, I was talking to Jackson Wiley, a retired symphony conductor, and he told me that on the opening night, the machine broke down just before the finale, and the entire cast of gods had to walk off the stage instead of crossing the bridge.
They're going to use that same machine "set" when they do the second part, an opera that I love, Die Walkure in May, 2011. I'll get up and leave if it's as contrived, distracting, and no better overall than what I sat through/witnessed today.
All this during a week when I'm on medicine that disallows my drinking my martini; think I'll just have dt's instead. Poor Joe (PITY)
I'm betting 10-1 that the critics peed all over themselves writing about how wonderful it was; that's what they did with last year's grossly-exaggerated-everything production of Hansel und Gretel. When the bridge to Walhalla scene ended, and the curtain came down, the audience went crazy. You'd've thought a marvel had taken place. Sometimes I think the NY crowd is NUTS. You're right... I should have gone to Seattle.
ETA Hmmm! Several critics did pan it. http://www.theoperacritic.com/reviewsa.php?schedid=metrheing0910
Reviews of Das Rheingold by Metropolitan Opera
Dallas Morning News
The Met's clunky, cold 'Das Rheingold' opens modern staging of Wagner's 'Ring' Cycle
8 Oct 10
The Hollywood Reporter
Technical wizardry and stirring musical performances enliven this first installment of the Met's new "Ring" cycle
6 Oct 10
Culture Kiosque
A night (really) at the opera
4 Oct 10
The Gazette
Robert Lepage's visuals for Das Rheingold did not exactly sing
3 Oct 10
Twilight of the snobs
2 Oct 10
New York Times
The Gods get their bridge at ‘Rheingold’
2 Oct 10
New York Magazine
The Met’s high-tech “Ring” debuts, with pivoting planks (and a couple of clanks)
2 Oct 10
Opera Britannia
The initial impression of the evening was that safe was not better than sorry
30 Sep 10
Die Presse
Beifall trotz Panne bei "Rheingold"-Premiere an der Met
30 Sep 10
Le Monde
Fausse note du décor high tech au Metropolitan Opera de New York
30 Sep 10

And THIS, believe it or not, is the "bridge". As with all other scenes and characters, using cables and straps attached to them, all the gods walked UP that colored platform and into Walhalla as/after it rotated and leveled off. It really was neat.

This critic said it all so well: http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcon...ingold_1007gd.ART.State.Edition1.336bc13.html
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You are way beyond me when it comes to opera, but sounds like the critic Scott Cantrell pretty much agreed with you.


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