lördag 24 juni 2017



Siegfried – Lars Cleveman.
Brünnhilde – Nina Stemme.
Mime – Niklas Björling Rygert.
Wotan – John Lundgren.
Alberich – Johan Edholm.
Fafner – Lennart Forsén.
Skogsfågeln – Marianne Hellgren Staykov.
Erda – Katarina Leoson.


A performance of Wagner's Siegfried stands or falls by its titular hero and Lars Cleveman is highly experienced, having sung the role when the production was new, though not originally cast for this revival. Crop-headed in a chain-mail byrnie, like a throwback Viking, he does not conform to Brünnhilde's vision of a childlike hero and laughing boy. His sturdy Heldentenor rang out in the Forging Scene, and he paced himself throughout the rigours of the part, sounding fresh and boisterous in the last act. In the more introspective moments, like the Forest Murmers, his sensitive phrasing and alert use of words embodied his loneliness.

As his would-be nemesis, Mime (Niklas Björling Rygert) sang truly and vividly, alternately smug and twitchy as his plans go increasingly awry. The interaction between him and Siegfried from exasperation to dependency, played out at a long kitchen counter with the forge at one end and the range at the other. With the incoming of the new free hero, John Lundgren, as Wotan/Wanderer, was of rock-like strength and majesty. His answer to Mime's third riddle, "Auf wolkigen Höh'n wohnen die Götter" rolled out grandly. In his sparring with Johan Edholm's Alberich, they played off each other with equal stature and it is no surprise that Edholm also sings Wotan in this house. In Lundgren's scene with Erda, imposingly sung by Katarina Leoson, only a certain lack of world weariness and renunciation raised the question why such a vigorous god should be ceding power to his grandson at all.

(...) Nina Stemme deployed all the burnished coppery colours of her voice, with darker undertones, reminding us that she is Erda's daughter. Heroically anguished and movingly tender in “Ewig war ich”, both she and Cleveman brought the duet to a radiant close.

The charming soubrette Woodbird of Marianne Hellgren Staykov, dressed as Sieglinde, gave an odd maternal tenderness to her promptings.

(...) From the serpentine opening, Marko Letonja conducted with muscular momentum, with rich brass sonority and poetically articulate woodwind. Only the sweeping inexorablity of the Act 3 prelude, with its interweaving themes, lacked cosmic grandeur.

Karin Olsson: Wagner – alltid med betydande obehag (Expressen)

(...) I Staffan Valdemar Holms drygt tio år gamla uppsättning är det en betydligt mer bekymmersam Siegfried - i form av den starke tenoren Lars Cleveman - som möter publiken. Clevemans hjälte försöker skuggboxa bort sin frustration innan han drar ut på sitt ödesbestämda äventyr.

(...) Mötet med kärleken Brünnhilde - sopranen Nina Stemme - förlöser Clevemans Siegfried. Tillsammans ska de bana väg för den nya tiden och den nya människan när den gamla ordningen har fallit. I en sista kärleksexplosion utlovar de gudarnas fall och välkomnar "Nacht der Vernichtung", förintelsens natt. I bakgrunden - av scenografen Bente Lykke Møllers svedda väggar - syns röken ur skorstenarna.


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