Who needs words? The Vienna Philharmonic under Lorin Maazel performed the "Ring Without Words" at Carnegie Hall last Saturday. Wagner has never sounded so soigné and the orchestra played his musical themes with clarity and brilliance. In particular. the prelude to Act 2 of Die Walküre, the funeral march and the final scene of Götterdämmerung were all played with conviction and dramatic fervor.
The opening piece, Mozart's Symphony No. 40, was also good but maybe I was too psyched for Wagner to appreciate it fully.
I'm still debating whether to see another Ring cycle at the Met, having seen the individual Robert Lepage productiions over the past two seasons. Maybe I'll just see Götterdämmerung with Deborah Voigt since Katarina Dalayman was a bit too restrained for my taste. Tickets are still available. Decisions, decisions...
The New York Times)