With this production, Opera North arrives at the climax of an extraordinary four-year project to present Wagner's epic tetralogy without going out of business. It has been belt-and-braces Wagner, presented in semi-staged concert versions, yet curiously none the worse for that. The absence of a theatre means there's no perverse directorial concept to contend with, though
A triptych of giant screens pick out certain key images: Wotan's ravens, Siegfried's sword, the Norn's broken thread; though Mumford's visuals default for long stretches to a knotted pine texture that suggests that the Gibichungs live in a freshly creosoted shed. Placing the singers in front of the orchestra solves the balance issues, though any acting that occurs appears to be entirely optional.
The outstanding performance comes from
Ultimately, however, the sheer sound-pressure levels attained during Siegfried's funeral march exemplified that this project has principally been the orchestra's triumph. The inspirational
Repeat performance on Wednesday. Box office: 0844 848 2700.
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