Die Walküre, the First Day of the Ring, was on this evening, a continuation from Das Rheingold from the previous evening.
I started listening from Act II on the Dwójka Polskie Radio this evening. Having accessed the webcast a couple of minutes late after what I supposed what the starting time, I was surprised on hearing the Valhalla leitmotif, which I vaguely recalled its appearance only during the second act. It was only after some time later that I realised that the operacast website had printed the timing for two of the radio stations wrongly. By that time, it didn't make much sense to switch to the other radio station with the delayed broadcast since Act I would have been more than halfway completed.
I thoroughly enjoyed Acts II and III this evening. Albert Dohmen, as Wotan, caught my attention with his confident and powerful delivery. Together with last evening's performance of Das Rheingold, I find that he was adept in bringing out the multifaceted character of Wotan vocally. I was moved by the way his voice shimmers above the orchestra in proclaiming his [sadly temporal] support for Siegmund, and when he was conflicted upon Fricka's chastisement of his notion of love and his ways as a god and husband, his immanent frustration upon killing of Siegmund, and of course, his most intense nostalgia in the closing passages of the last act.
Linda Watson, as Brünnhilde, wasn't as consistent. In the dramatic sections whereby her vocals were supposed to float above the orchestra, she was drowned out by the latter. On the other hand, her rendition of the monologue at the end of Act II Scene 2 was the most beautiful I've heard thus far. In heart-rending passage with such poetic libretto, she brought out conflicting wretchedness in Brünnhilde in the most alluring manner.
And of course, now to the tragic hero, Siegmund, sung by tenor Endrik Wottrich. How I wish the lifespan of his character was lengthened! Such power and intimacy in the same voice! I shall take note of the re-broadcast, and indulge myself in his proclamation of love to Sieglinde in Act I Scene 3. I have no doubts that it'll be superb.
The Orchester der Bayreuther Festspiele under Christian Thielemann was strong, as like the last evening, stringing every single unit of the opera together to create the most complete and coherent picture. Come to think of it, they're unrivalled when it comes to Wagnerian repertoire.
Thankfully, there'll be a break of a day before Siegfried will be shown. Being situated in an obscure corner of Mars, the time difference is just horribly different. I shall attempt to compile the available reviews on this entire Bayreuther Festspiele in the next coming few days. Apparently, the opening night wasn't well received with the radically different production by Katharina Wagner. We shall see how it turns out. Right now, I would personally prefer a traditionalist to the throne (all three candidates are, as quoted from A.C. Douglas, unfortunately, supporters of Regietheater and none seemed like conservatives), as I'm still considerably new to Wagner music. Give me a few more years of largely similar traditional productions and it'll difficult to say though...
Darn, I'm more interested in the politics of the Bayreuther Festspiele than the local politics.