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Wagner's 'Parsifal' Draws 5,000 in 4 Nights

Gurnemanz - Manfred Hemm, Parsifal - Richard Decker
Gurnemanz - Manfred Hemm, Parsifal - Richard Decker Source: Photo: Courtesy Rahvusooper Estonia

An audience of around 5,000 applauded the National Opera production of Richard Wagner's opera "Parsifal", performed for the first time ever in Estonia, at the reclaimed Noblessner Foundry on Tallinn's waterfront.

Parsifal, the last opera written by Wagner, premiered in Bayreuth in 1882 and is considered one of the most complex classical music pieces, presenting a major challenge to companies choosing to stage it.

Just like in 2008, when Wagner's "Tristan and Isolde" was put on stage in Tallinn, the production drew a full house. The difference, however, was in the venue - while the National Opera seats just 700, the recently converted Noblessner Foundry accommodates nearly twice as much. According to the National Opera, groups of Wagner connoisseurs, journalists and critics from across the world, traveled to Tallinn to listen to Wagner's masterpiece during its four-night run from August 25.

Surprisingly, a younger audience made up a large share of the visitors at the Noblessner Foundry, the organizers said.

On November 5, Giacomo Puccini's opera "Manon Lescaut", another first-timer in Estonia, will premiere at the National Opera. The musical director and conductor will be Arvo Volmer, with Latvian-born Andrejs Zagars as the stage director.


Ingrid Teesalu

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