Met RHEINGOLD round-up
Heidi Whaleson in the WSJ: "a high-tech extravaganza oddly married to an old-fashioned stand-and-sing aesthetic." To me, that's basically praise.
Stage-machinery malfunction at very end meant gods had to shuffle off to Buffalo instead of entering Valhalla. But hey, the history of RING productions is a history of prop malfunctions. See my Dad's book, "Prima Donnas & Other Wild Beasts," for the section on anvils that split *before* Siegfried strikes them. You deal with it.
Philly says "flawed," which tells you a lot about Philly.
My longtime friend Martin Bernheimer (writing for The Financial Times) is the world's greatest opera critic, and perhaps the last of the truly learned ones. But he's mighty hard to please in RING productions. He railed endlessly against the Met's previous, ultra-realistic one, but does he like this new, more abstract one? Ha!
Claire Prentice in The Daily Telegraph: "a triumph...Lepage treated the audience to a mesmerising display of virtual magic...Images projected on to the set evoke the depths of the Rhine, the mountaintops of the gods and the underground realm of the Nibelungen....Wearing costumes inspired by early productionsthe singers move around a stage bathed in infrared light. Computers pick up their movements and envelop them in projected pictures that move with their voices and the score. Wherever the god Loge goes, a flaming aura follows...."
Oo! Oo! A quick video about the production, narrated by director Lepage! (Ignore the opening: it's Baroque, but don't fix it.)