[Met Performance] CID:121420
Götterdämmerung {130}
Ring Cycle [61]
Boston Opera House, Boston, Massachusetts: 04/9/1937.

(Review)


Boston, Massachusetts
April 9, 1937


GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG {130}
Der Ring des Nibelungen: Cycle [61]

Brünnhilde..............Kirsten Flagstad
Siegfried...............Lauritz Melchior
Gunther.................Friedrich Schorr
Gutrune.................Dorothee Manski
Hagen...................Emanuel List
Waltraute...............Karin Branzell
Alberich................Eduard Habich [Last performance]
First Norn..............Doris Doe
Second Norn.............Irra Petina
Third Norn..............Dorothee Manski
Woglinde................Stella Andreva
Wellgunde...............Irra Petina
Flosshilde..............Doris Doe
Vassal..................Arnold Gabor
Vassal..................Karl Laufkötter

Conductor...............Artur Bodanzky

Review of Cyrus Durgin in the Boston Globe

"Ring" Cycle Ended with "Götterdämmerung"

The sins of the gods were punished, the curse of Alberich expiated, and the old, evil order brought to flaming end and upon the stage of the Boston Opera House last evening as "Götterdämmerung" brought the cycle of Wagner's "Nibelungen Ring" to a close. The performance was without reservation, incredibly fine. Upon the stage and in the orchestra pit, voices and instruments proclaimed the genius of a sickly little man, to whom it was given to create the most stupendous single work in all music.

A reviewer who remains perilously close to midnight to hear Brünnhilde's Immolation Scene, can but assemble a hasty summary of what took place. Since this was Kirsten Flagstad's first singing of the "Götterdämmerung" Brünnhilde in Boston, no chronicle would be complete without an inkling of those tragic moments attending the end of the woman who was a goddess. In a sense, a conception of this Brünnhilde is summarized in the utterance of "Alles! Alles! Alles weissich: alles ward mir nun frei!" and a few measures later of "Ruhe, Ruhe du Gott."

Mme. Flagstad sang them with the poignant simplicity which bespeaks understanding of tragedy, yet with the anguish of a woman. This, perhaps, is the most exalted point of the whole "Ring" and she who brings to this utterance the proper quality of tragedy is a great Brünnhilde.

Mr. Melchior was again the superb artist, along with Mr. List, whose Hagen will stand in memory. Mr. Schorr, Miss Manski and Miss Branzell were without blemish.

The music-drama must have been given nearly in full last night, for the final curtain occurred very close to 12 o'clock. The scene with Alberich counseling his son Hagen, often omitted, was retained. It was just as well that the horse, Grane, was not called from a comfortable stall to carry Brünnhilde into the funeral pyre. Though it be heresy, this is one of Wagner's stage directions best ignored though one remembers vividly a Saturday afternoon in New York a year ago when another Brünnhilde triumphantly mounted her Grane and role off as Lawrence Gilman put it, "in the direction of Mr. Edward Johnson's office."

Thus closed a revelatory cycle of Wagner's great work, of which "Götterdämmerung," with its tragic grandeur and musical summation of all that has gone before, is often overwhelming by reason of its cumulative strength. Artur Bodanzky, the conductor, has accomplished as noble a piece of work as could be desired with the members of a disciplined and responsive orchestra. The funeral music of Siegfried, for example, has never sounded more elemental than last night.



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