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„There is no place like home“

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No. 36175
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What operas do you like?
Favorite composers and/or librettists?
Favorite singers?
Do you ever visit the opera?

Personally I'm just starting to reach out into this territory, having been hooked mostly by the music of Wagner and his librettos but also by the german Lied. Never been to the opera myself yet but I'm currently looking for a worthwhile (classical, not post-modern deconstructionist filth) staging I can visit this year and meanwhile satisfying myself with recordings and reading librettos.
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No. 36176
Also recommending some german Lieder, you can find the translated lyrics online (and should really read them).

>Elisabeth Schwarzkopf sings "Four Last Songs" by Richard Strauss
https://youtu.be/Cs0vSC9DUhU

>Christa Ludwig sings "Kindertotenlieder", written by Friedrich Rückert and composed by Gustav Mahler
https://youtu.be/9edKNmyiLBc

>Kirsten Flagstad sings "Wesendonck-Lieder", written by Mathilde Wesendonck and composed by Richard Wagner
https://youtu.be/XpAd7yTQOY4

>Elisabeth Schwarzkopf sings "Goethe-Lieder", written by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and composed by Hugo Wolf
https://youtu.be/N3v3e-8PA90
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No. 36186
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I've only been a few times, and mostly because I could get in for free as a student or due to my current part-time job at the theatre. Nonetheless I feel impelled to share my unqualified opinions.
My absolute favorite was Macbeth by Verdi, I don't remember the sound that well, but the staging was really memorable, very surreal with colored lighting, monumental set pieces and good costumes. All the other ones I've seen the stage design and the costumes were pretty average/bad. In fact they seem to recycle most of the costumes from various different pieces without too much regard and put it off as creative freedom or whatever. I don't mind it that much but it's just kind of sad.
Recently I've seen Mussorgsky's Boris Godunov (based on a play by Pushkin) which was pretty good (again if you didn't pay too much attention to the stage design, and to the accents, and to the bad subtitles). They even made a trailer for it, see for yourself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FRvQG6CzrV4
Though I'm afraid that either something is wrong with my ears or the acoustics aren't all that great in the theatre I've watched it at. Then again I didn't exactly have the best seat of course. And it really matters where you sit so if you're actually paying for your ticket you need to really make sure it's a good adaptation else it might not be worth the money.
Also I've seen half of Der Ring an einem Abend which is a shortened version of Wagner's Ring cycle with intermittent commentary written by Loriot which is performed by a speaker. It wasn't as cringe as I expected it to be, but I didn't really enjoy it either. Maybe I just don't like Wagner that much, it's a bit too pompous, too many crashing cymbals. Though I did enjoy the Parsifal movie adaptation by Syberberg, but it's also a visual feast. What's the appeal of Wagner to you?
Then I've also seen Eugen Onegin by Tchaikovsky but that was quite immemorable, also the accents again pained my ears.

Also, in general, I think I'd enjoy opera much more if they'd just project proper subtitles which really can't be that hard given current technology. But I guess there's still quite a bit of elitist/conservative mentality going on around opera.
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No. 36206
The only opera that really resonates with me is Fidelio, and then just one or two arias. Musically, I like Mozart's operas, and a few pieces I'vd heard from 18th century French opera.

Wagner is to me the stereotype of opera in the worst way possible. Underwhelming Romantic-era music and lofty overblown national-cultural myths. IMO the 19th century was in many ways the cultural and intellectual lowpoint of the European elite, and the only post-napoleonic opera I really like and admire is Carmen. My nigga Nietzsche have similar tastes in this respect.
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No. 37569
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As I don't want to post it in the Today thread, maybe we can talk ITT about theatre as well? In any case, I'm gonna hijack this for my impressions of the "Ice Trilogy" play I've seen on Saturday. Spoiler because it's a rambling wall of text.

It was really ambitious, just the sort of post-modern maximalism I enjoy. On stage the actors were followed and filmed with a handheld camera and the feed projected onto a half-translucent screen covering the stage, there was another LCD screen with additional pre-recorded clips playing from time to time, and an artist with a tablet whose drawings were projected onto the stage, also really banging sound effects and a pretty catchy live sung theme song.
Of course not all of that at the same time, it was split into 6 episodes with different settings & themes, quite a rollercoaster ride covering just about anything from violent murders, mad soliloquys, pure slapstick & plenty of fourth wall breaks, somber philosophical voiceover recitals, bizarre infomercial-stlye interludes and so on until it all dissolved into light. Also quite impressive how it were only 7 or so actors each of whom probably played about a dozen different roles througout.

Just to sum up the plot briefly, it's about a sect of chosen people with blonde hair and blue eyes, who are awakened by being hit on their chest with a hammer made from Tunguskan meteorite ice. Whoever dies in the process is not part of the chosen 23.000, but merely a "flesh machine". As soon as all 23.000 are awakened, all the brothers and sisters will turn back into their original form of light and the world will end. The story then follows a few recurring and many side characters throughout the 20th century, mainly in Soviet Russia and Nazi Germany.
Now this might sound like a pretty blunt allegory to the need for belonging & uniqueness that's posited the root of fascist movements, but also modern day cults & conspiracy theories (where the play reminded me of Sion Sono's Love Exposure, a similarly ambitious masterpiece). However, the play ends with the 23.000 actually succeeding in ending the world through their communion & death, but at the same time bringing about a new cycle of cosmogenesis, and, probably unthinkable and almost distasteful for Wectern audiences nowadays, an explicitly Christian one, with the first few lines of Genesis being recited at the very end (with e.g. the terms "light" and "water" really taking on a new meaning in the context of the play). It can be somewhat compared to the ending of Jodorowsky's Magic Mountain, as it also puts forward the imperative to LIVE and endure LIFE for the audience/humans.


Also I'm pretty sure they managed to sneak in a small reference to KC: in one scene a conspiracy theorist mentions that he gets all his info online from "Bernd".
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No. 47404
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Just went to see Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District by Shostakovich, probably the best opera I've seen so far mb it helped that I was a bit drunk.
The music was really exciting, almost more pompous than Wagner at times, also the acoustics in this theatre were really good, just the right amount of loudness. The story is quite base and the adaptation was basically pornographic at times, almost made me wish I had some opera glasses to play the voyeur tbh but that didn't subtract from the overall experience too much. The costumes and set were nothing to write home about for the most part, but I feel like that's just how it is with these seasonal perforamances. Singing was great tho, especially the bass of the father merchant character, also I love how the overtitles are always end up sounding so awkward, makes for some good laughs at times.