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WAGNER, R.: Gotterdammerung (Ring Cycle 4)

Composer(s):Wagner, Richard
Period(s) Romantic
Genre Classical Music
Category Opera
Catalogue 8.660179-82
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
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Comprising four separate operas, Wagner’s visionary Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung) took 25 years to complete. Centred around a ring of power and the attempts of various people to acquire it, the Ring cycle explores the relationship between love and earthly power and the themes of yearning and loss, all within a setting of medieval legend. The fourth opera of the cycle, Götterdämmerung, brings the betrayal and death of the young hero Siegfried and of his beloved Brünnhilde. The ring itself is restored to the Rhinemaidens, and the age of gods and heroes ends, as Valhalla burns.



Review By David Denton,Naxos,April 2007

The Gods are in disarray, Siegfried who now has the golden ring, though as yet he neither understands its significance or its power, has destroyed Wotan's omnipotence. The evil and once vanquished Gibichungs are in the ascendancy and Gunther and Hagen are plotting to regain the ring by tempting Siegfried to marry Gunther's sister, Gutrune, but that involves separating Siegfried from Brunnhilde to whom he has pledged eternal love. That it will all end in tragedy is obvious from the outset, the Norns explaining at length the story thus far in a lengthy introduction. That section in almost every recording of the opera is the weak part of the cycle, casting directors never quite realising the importance of a strong opening, and this version is no exception. But once the main



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