The Ring of the Nibelung (Penguin Clothbound Classics)

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Description

The Ring of the Nibelung (Penguin Clothbound Classics)

A superb new translation of one of the greatest nineteenth century poems: the libretto to Wagner’s Ring Cycle, in a Penguin Classics hardcover designed by Coralie Bickford-Smith

The scale and grandeur of Wagner’s The Ring of the Nibelung has no precedent and no successor. It preoccupied Wagner for much of his adult life and revolutionized the nature of opera, the orchestra, the demands on singers and on the audience itself. The four operas—The Rhinegold, The Valkyrie, Siegfried, and Twilight of the Gods—are complete worlds, conjuring up extraordinary mythological landscapes through sound as much as staging.

Wagner wrote the entire libretto before embarking on the music. Discarding the grand choruses and bravura duets central to most operas, he used the largest musical forces in the context often of only a handful of singers on stage. The words were essential: he was telling a story and making an argument in a way that required absolute attention to what was said.

The libretto for The Ring lies at the heart of nineteenth century culture. It is in itself a work of power and grandeur, and it had an incalculable effect on European and specifically German culture. John Deathridge’s superb new translation, with notes and a fascinating introduction, is essential for anyone who wishes to fully engage with one of the great musical experiences.

  • Hardcover – October 9, 2018
  • by Richard Wagner  (Author), John Deathridge (Editor, Translator, Introduction), Coralie Bickford-Smith (Illustrator)
  • Series: Penguin Clothbound Classics
  • Hardcover: 816 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (October 9, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 2 x 8.1 inches

History

Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen

Conceived and written over a period of more than 25 years, Wagner’s Ring cycle is an epic musical journey of four operas: Das Rheingold, Die Walküre, Siegfried, and Götterdämmerung. Its story of gods, dwarves, and men and the quest for an all-powerful ring was inspired by many sources, including 13th-century Icelandic writings and the medieval German Nibelungenlied. The complete cycle was first seen at the inaugural Bayreuth Festival in 1876. The Met’s landmark production, directed by Robert Lepage, premiered over the course of the 2010–11 and 2011–12 seasons. The DVD release of its Live in HD presentation won the 2013 Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording.

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