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Stuttgart 1999: Zagrosek, Behle/Gasteen/De Vol, Probst/Rootering/Schone, Gambill, Denoke, West, Bonnema.

STUTTGART 1999

Zagrosek, Behle/Gasteen/De Vol, Probst/Rootering/Schone, Gambill, Denoke, West, Bonnema

EuroArts/TDK DVUS RINGBOX (boxed set, also available individually)

This Ring is reputedly the first to use a different creative team for each of the four operas. Since each work is approached as an entity unto itself, this Ring cannot legitimately be called a cycle. There are major casting changes from work to work (there are three Wotans, three Brunnhildes, three Alberichs and so on) and nothing links the four operas conceptually. One needs a rather perverse (or subversive) sense of humor to stomach the Eurotrash excesses found here. Siegfried, for example, looks like an episode of Trailer Park Boys, with our hero--beer belly and all--looking slovenly in jeans, dirty T-shirt and greasy hair. But if you do not object to Brunnhilde brushing her teeth in the middle of her love duet with Siegfried, or Mime masturbating after his apparently libidinous session with the Wanderer, then this set is for you. Fortunately, Naxos is releasing this Ring on CD, as there are some fine performances sprinkled throughout, particularly the marvellous playing of the Staatsorchester Stuttgart under the baton of Lothar Zagrosek.

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Author:Crory, Neil
Publication:Opera Canada
Date:Sep 1, 2006
Words:197
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