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Wagner and German Idealism

Scruton, Grayling, Janaway, Tanner and Deathridge each present a short episode on the philosophical influences on Wagner.   anthony graylingchris janawayClassical musicGerman Idealismmichael tanneroperaRichard WagnerRoger Scrutonromanticism

The Case Of Wagner: A Musician’s Problem

Chose your digital format of “The Case Of Wagner: A Musician’s Problem” made available by Project Gutenberg. Of course, one should also give a close listen to this version of Parsifal from Bayreuth 2016. And yet this other question can certainly not be circumvented: what business had he actually with that manly (alas! so unmanly) “bucolic simplicity,” that…

The Ring of the Nibelung 101

Roger stylishly and lucidly outlines the timelessness of The Ring’s significance — especially salient to our troubled current times. aestheticsconsciousnessDer Ring des Nibelungenfreedommusicpolitics and religionpolitics of faithpolitics of skepticismReligionRichard WagnerRoger Scruton

Williams on Wagner & Politics

New York Review of Books November 2, 2000. My point here is not to reinstate the distinction between the work and the man, which I have already said is not a helpful device in Wagner’s case. The point is just that one cannot decide in advance, either positively or negatively, what facts about the man,…

Rattle, Ligeti, Wagner and Ravel

An exceptional prom in a so-so season despite this being one of London’s biggest years since VE Day. What was distinctive was that each piece cleverly flowed into each other thereby “robbing” the audience of the opportunity to clap. And no, the photo is of Simon Rattle and not Steven Pinker. See The Telegraph’s glowing…

Parsifal: the greatest meditation on death?

I’ve been watching James Levine‘s version of Parsifal. Though quite the production, it doesn’t come near the experience of the starker Simon Rattle production I saw at the Royal Opera House some years back in which I thoroughly appreciated Vera Dobroschke’s lighting design (see photo below). Here is the NYT review, far more receptive than the reviews of…