Success for Die Walküre – workshop – Scene 2, Oslo
Success for Die Walküre in Oslo
Review by Henning Høholt, Fotos Thomas Korneliussen, og Henning Høholt.
OSLO/NORWAY: 3. July 2015: Success for Die Walküre by Richard Wagner staged by Arild Helleland. With a star cast headed by Nina Gravrok and Thor Inge Falch, both at international standard, Falch also performing a very beautiful pianissimo. Closely followed by Megan Cullen as Brunnhilde, who was being better and better during the performance and in the end was excellent and Anna Einarsson good as Fricka. Jørgen Backer brilliant as Wotan. Odd Grundt was a safe choise as Hunding.
The big pleasant surprise was Jørgen Backer, extraordinary well singing and performing as Wotan.
Many brilliant and well sounding details, A master piece.
Allready, when he entered stage with his first tunes, I noticed something extraordinary could happen, and through the whole performance he vocally and in his behaving build his role up to a wonderful climax in his beautiful Good by to Brünhilde.
To my oppinnion Jørgen Backer can sing this role every where. Further more, he is good looking on stage.
With elegance, powerfull stage presence.
What the audience was waiting for is the Walkuries entrance opening tha last act, and they very pleasant surorised with a first class cast.
At our evening we enjoyed the many Walküries in the last act. Who had made a good preparation work, and were sounding great, one by one and ensemble:
At my performance, 3. July 2015, led by Megan Cullen as Bruünnhilde. Dóra Armannsdóttir – Helmwige
. Bethany Kallan Remfry – Gerhilde. Shayna Jones – Ortlinde. Siv Iren Misund – Waltraute. Melanie Campbell – Sigrune. Kari Lise Høgseth – Rossweisse. Silje Vatne Heggen – Grimgerde. Ingunn Kilen – Schwertleite.
Our famouse Wagner character tenor, Arild Helleland, (Mime) had made a disent, clean and very well functioning regi.
Without “awful and tasteless auspices ideas”.
He believe in that the music and sung is so powerfull and exiting in it self, so it don´t need any stupid regi ideas, and i sincerelly agree in that. This suited the performance very well, good scenography, and light, However, I could have had more fire light in the very end.
Magnus Loddgaard conducted his “large” two pianists orchestra
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. Dimitris Kostopoulos and Stefan Ibsen Zlatanos to bravour.
It was interesting to listen to how well these two well known classical pianists managed this demanding job. And how well they cooperated. Where the one is excellent in keeping the stability in the tempi and in that way building up to the climaxes, when needed, and the other in colouring the details musically, and being excellent in the rubato parts.
– On sunday evening 5.7. it was a second performance, with partly another cast, that we unfortunately didn´t manage to attend.
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Of course we are fully aware of that this Die Walküre was based on a opera work shop that John Arne Lidal is arranging for the 10th year, however in this connection the works presented at Scene 2 at the Opera in Oslo was brilliant, and very inspiring and very well done.
This year the program was:
This summer presents Lidal North International Opera Workshop two contrasting workshop performances: Richard Wagner’s Die Walküre and Back to Broadway.
Die Walküre (3rd and 5th July) constitutes the second part of Wagner’s fourfold epic music drama the Ring. Here we met some of the Ring cycle most interesting characters at decisive moments in their lives: Wotan, leader of the gods, if violation of its own laws has put Gods sovereignty at risk; his twin offspring, Siegmund and Sieglinde, who must save the gods; and, above all, his heroic Valkyrie daughter Brünnhilde, who takes a fateful decision that shakes her world.
The workshop is led by instructor and pianist John Lidal. Starring we will meet soloists who stand on the threshold of professional careers, as well as established artists.
The works were performed with “simple stage” techniques, accompanied by piano. In fact I didn´t find the stage technique simple, it was complete to Scene 2 at the Opera, in my oppinnion.
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Back to Broadway
Back to Broadway (2nd and 4th July) was a partially staged performance with highlights from the musical theater repertoire. World famous songs, duets and ensembles performed by participants. The show led from the piano by musical specialist Dan Getting together with the National Opera’s own soprano Eli Kristin Hansesveen. Please enjoy the separate review tomorrow at www.kulturkompasset.com
We have got permission from John Lidal to bring his thank you letter to all participants at this 15 days inspiring work-shop .:
DAY 15: TAKK – THANK YOU!
As the flames envelop Brünnhilde tonight, and Wotan has uttered his legendary “Leb’ wohl du Kühnes, herrliches Kind!”, time has come for me to say goodbye this time around! Through intense, joyous, demanding, fun, optimistic, inspiring, realistic, and eye-opening days, we have arrived at the final day of the 10th Anniversary Edition of the Lidal North International Opera Workshop.
Hundreds of lesson – , coaching -, and staging sessions have been held <span class=”text_exposed_show”>over these past couple of weeks, millions of notes have been sung and played, – and HOW ! Thanks to our talented participants and faculty, it has been a true privilege and a pleasure planning it all, AS WELL AS seeing it through to the goal line. You all have done such a remarkable job.
“As befits an Anniversary, I would like to thank all the faculty members who have contributed over these past 10 years”.
They include Ms Gait Sirguey, Ms Eli Kristin Hanssveen, Ms Wencke Ophaug, Mr John Norris, Ms Toril Carlsen, Ms Ann Rodiger, Mr Boris Anifantakis, Ms Hege Høisæter, Ms Hyae Seon Shin, Mr Magnus Loddgard, Ms Lauren Moon, Mr Sébastien Dutrieux, Mr Terje Boye Hansen, Ms Hilde Andersen, Ms Jeanne-Michèle Charbonnet, Ms Elizabeth Norberg-Schulz, Mr Martin Baeza de Rubio, Ms Alenka Ponjavic, Mr Dimitris Kostopoulos, Mr Stefan Ibsen Zlatanos, Ms Riko Higuma, Mr Marco Nisticò, Mr Byron Knutson, Mr Dan Gettinger, Ms Daniela Candillari, Mr Laurent Pillot, Mr Neill Thornborrow, Mr John Dawson, Mr Mark Schnaible, and Ms Patricia McCaffrey. THANK YOU!
Now, a big CONGRATULATIONS is in order for tonight’s marvelous WALKÜRE performance! You all did so well – so many glorious moments, and lush-sounding stretches of music. Visually, too, we were transported as if by magic, to landscapes of wild cliffs, and fragrant, spring-like seasons!
In order to keep a 4h15min Wagnerian performance running according to plan, the stamina and concentration that is required from everyone involved, is massive.
The libretto alone, must surely be the length of half the Old Testament! Anyway, BRAVI – you triumphed, with flying colors!
THANKS YET AGAIN, EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU!!!
A final word on your way; keep in mind the following words by Mr Roosevelt
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”