The orchestra crescendos as a woman of ample proportions strides to the front of the stage, blonde braids trailing from under a horned helmet. Her gilded bosom heaves as she inhales, opens her lip-sticked maw and lets loose an earthshaking high note.
This is Brunhilde who inspired the proverb, “The opera ain’t over until the fat lady sings”.
But you can help make sure quality, classical, entertainment such as Opera stays healthy and doesn’t end in Northern Ohio by donating to NOOL, joining our Opera League to help prepare fun events or by attending our events. So as one Opera ends, please walk into our Lobby, and get ready for fun!!!
Wagner had long desired to have a special festival opera house, designed by himself, for the performance of the Ring. In 1871, he decided on a location in the Bavarian town of Bayreuth. In 1872, he moved to Bayreuth, and the foundation stone was laid. Wagner would spend the next two years attempting to raise capital for the construction, with scant success; King Ludwig finally rescued the project in 1874 by donating the needed funds. The Bayreuth Festspielhaus opened in 1876 with the first complete performance of the Ring, which took place from 13 August to 17 August.
The plot revolves around a magic ring that grants the power to rule the world, forged by the Nibelung dwarf Alberich from gold he stole from the Rhine maidens in the river Rhine. With the assistance of Loge, Wotan — the chief of the gods — steals the Ring from Alberich, but is forced to hand it over to the giants, Fafner and Fasolt. Wotan’s schemes to regain the Ring, spanning generations, drive much of the action in the story. His grandson, the mortal Siegfried, wins the ring — as Wotan intended — but is eventually betrayed and slain as a result of the intrigues of Alberich’s son Hagen. Finally, the Valkyrie Brünnhilde — Siegfried’s lover and Wotan’s estranged daughter — returns the ring to the Rhine maidens. In the process, the gods and their home, Valhalla, are destroyed.