Wagner's 'Tannhäuser' at Covent Garden,
by ROBERT HUGILL
Covent Garden has not performed Wagner's Tannhäuser since 1987 when Elijah Moshinsky's 1984 production was given its second and final outing. The opera has been absent from the London Coliseum as well so that Londoners have been deprived of the chance to see Wagner's early attempt to come to terms with sexual and spiritual love; and incidentally one of his most popular operas in the nineteenth century. Perhaps the fact that Covent Garden had, over this period, a successful and highly revivable production of Lohengrin dissuaded them from producing another early Wagner opera; that of course and the taxing and tiring nature of the title role.
So the opening night to Tim Albery's new production on Saturday 11 December 2010 was eagerly awaited by many.
Semyon Bychkov conducted the Paris version of the opera, ie the version which Wagner adapted for Paris and then subsequently revised for Vienna, but with Walter von der Vogelweide's contribution to the singing contest in Act II restored...
Copyright © 15 December 2010