Classic Bayreuth Festival Production Shows Valkyries’ Dirty Work
The Valkyries would seem to have it all.
In most productions of recent years the legendary warrior sisters of Richard Wagner’s Ring of the Nibelungs cycle seem to get all the glory: the best music (they don’t call it “The Ride of the Valkyries” for nothing), a favored place in their father’s heart (even as Wotan sinks ever more deeply into the mother of all mid-life crises) and secure (well, secure for everyone but poor, silly Brünhilde) jobs in the family business.
Yes, the Valkyries would seem to have all the glamor. Then again, things aren’t always what they seem.
A 1976 Bayreuth Festival production of Wagner’s Ring stresses no the Valkyries’ girl-warrior status, but rather the dark side of the their jobs as collectors of fallen soldiers.
Dark indeed. One might even say grizzly. But check it out: