25 Jan-7 Feb 2005. Conducted by Jeffrey Tate, directed by Robert Carsen, with Christopher Ventris, Kristinn Sigmundsson, Greer Grimsley, Janice Baird.
The Teatro La Fenice di Venezia is preparing Die Walkre by Richard Wagner (25 Jan-7 Feb). The company comprises a number of specialists of this repertory: Greer Grimsley, Petra Lang, Janice Baird and Doris Soffel; there are also Kristinn Sigmundsson and Christopher Ventris, who sang Die Walkre last year in Naples. Jeffrey Tate, a renowned interpreter of Wagner, conducts: he was in Naples too with a captivating and dramatic but also lyrical and moving interpretation. In Venice, as in Milan, there is an element to pique the curiosity: the talented and controversial director Robert Carsen. Verdis La Traviata, which he presented in Venice last year, was set in a forest of birch trees with dollar notes for leaves, to symbolise the bourgeois and vulgar world in which Violetta lives. Carsens version of Dvorks Rusalka in Paris a few years ago took place in a swimming pool. If these are the ideas behind Carsens operatic direction, what will await us in Die Walkre, an opera that mixes history and fantasy? How will he present that great test of every self-respecting director, the spectacular circle of fire that envelops the rock where Brnnhilde lies asleep? Paolo Di Nicola