Although this ‘Ring’ had generally good reviews for its orchestral excellence and vocal excellence the pretentious ‘modern’ setting would have made Wagner turn in his grave. Give me swords and horned helmets any time!
- The singing and acting of Stefan Vinke (Siegfried), Deborah Humble (Era), and Jud Arthur (Fafner). And the playing of the Melbourne Ring Orchestra – the reeds and horns were especially brilliant during the Forest Murmurs/Woodbird scenes in Act II and the Reawakening scene of Act III.
- The depiction of Fafner/the Dragon’s face via full-screen projections at the opening of Act II. It was a highly effective and economical way to convey in an abstract way Siegfried’s approach to the dragon’s lair. An excellent visual representation of what the music is ‘saying’ at this point.
- The emergence of the mortally wounded Fafner from his cavern and his final dialogue with Siegfried. This was especially powerful because the audience had been introduced to the dragon by the music and opening visuals at the beginning of the act.
- The Act I set. A shallow on-stage proscenium…
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