Monday, February 14, 2005

Valentine's Day and Bayreuth is playing Hard to Get

My love affair with the Bayreuth Festival hasn't gotten off the ground yet, and already it appears that Cupid has misfired his arrows. Last week I received my rejection letter from the Bayreuth Festival Ticket Department. This is the first year that I request tickets, and true to everything that I have heard about their ticket policy, the letter came in stating that due to numerous requests, they will not be able to honor my request for the 2005 Festival. I knew this when I mailed the letter, so although my sense of disappointment is still great, I was not very surprised to receive the thin white envelope with its single English typewritten form letter.

The waiting list is about eight years, so they tell me, so I will put in my request for next year in the hope that I can beat the odds before the eight year time period.

Realistically, at this rate, I don't think that I will be able to witness Christoph Schlingensief's Parsifal production from last year, since the critical and audience reaction to its premiere last summer was so negative that Wolfgang Wagner might already be thinking of replacing it. That might not be a bad thing. The best Bayreuth productions lately have been those that are in the works.

The word on the stra├če is that Wolfgang Wagner has signed conductor Christian Thielemann to helm an entire new Ring tetralogy which will not open until 2006, and then will run until 2011. If that's the case, then it will be worth putting in my request for next year, and the next, and the next...

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