The Winking Satire of ‘Agrippina’
Agrippina, the Handel opera now premiering on the Metropolitan Opera’s stage, may have been written as a satire on the politics of its own time, but in the hands of producer Sir David McVicar, and set in the present day, it offers a timely paradigm of hypocrisy, corruption, and sexual manipulation in the halls of power.
March 1, 2020
A Resonant Centenary for Strauss in Vienna
Strauss and Hofmannsthal’s lavish operatic fairy tale of political and social renewal opened exactly a century ago—just as an unprecedented political crisis threatened to subvert the legitimacy of the hundred-year-old Austrian republic. Today, it has a somewhat different resonance for an Austrian republic shaken by scheming politicians.
June 13, 2019
Wagner on Trial
In Barrie Kosky’s new production of Die Meistersinger, which opened the 2017 Bayreuth Festival, the musical cobbler Hans Sachs has been restyled as his creator Richard Wagner, isolated in the witness box at the Nuremberg Trials, and we the audience have now become the tribunal, passing judgment on him.
August 8, 2017