When: Sat., Feb. 11, 12 p.m. 2012
The virtual curtain rises at noon for The Metropolitan Opera's live-in-HD broadcast of Götterdämmerung, the fourth opera in Richard Wagner's 19th-century masterpiece. With this final installment, "the twilight of the gods," The Met completes its new production of The Ring Cycle, with its mindboggling, high-tech staging by Robert Lepage, in which big machinery does the heavy lifting while weightless images flow and flicker around the singers. The show opened on stage Jan. 27, but during Saturday's matinee broadcast, cameras will give viewers in the cinemas amazing angles, close-ups and tracking shots of this epic drama.
The music will certainly be fabulous. The Met's principal conductor, Fabio Luisi, who conducted the ravishing third segment, Siegfried, last fall, will again be at the podium, drawing out both the power and the delicacy of Wagner's music. The glorious, voluptuous Deborah Voigt (her voice is sometimes uneven, but still she shines) sings Brünnhilde, the Valkyrie-turned-mortal by love, and Siegfried is sung by tenor Jay Hunter Morris, returning to the Met stage after his sudden ascent to stardom as the young hero last October. An international group of elite Wagnerian singers, from silvery soprano to deepest bass, completes the cast of gods and mortals.
This is a big dish of art. It will run approximately six hours, with two intermissions. While The Met's Live in HD programs generally encore about 10 days after the broadcast, no repeat has yet been scheduled for this or any other portion of The Ring. If you love Wagner, or if you've simply always meant to experience one of his operas, you can't do better than give over Saturday to this 21st-century take on the 19th century's idea of apocalypse now. At Brier Creek Stadium 14, North Hills Stadium 14 and Crossroads Stadium 20. —Kate Dobbs Ariail