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Can Gergiev do Wagner? And how.

Over the past week I have been test-driving the first segment of the St Petersburg Wagner Ring to come out on record…. a lively ride even for sworn non-Valkyries. To read what I made of it, click Sinfini’s Lebrecht Album of the Week.

It’s sound years ahead of the dull Met compilation that won a Grammy last night.

walkyrie gergiev

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  1. Marko Velikonja says:

    What? He recorded it with a cast of non-Russian singers? I’ve seen Gergiev conduct both Walkure and Tristan in Moscow, and of course he can conduct Wagner. But much of the charm was hearing Olga Savova as Brunnhilde, Mikhail Kit as Wotan, etc.. Much of the charm with Gergiev/Maryinsky is to see/hear how Russian performers do it. This looks like a Levine cast. I’m sure it’s very good, though.

  2. I saw Gergiev and the Mariinsky do the third act of Parsifal in concert in Berlin two years ago and it was very good. The orchestra has the kind of rich, dark sound that works very well for Wagner. I think it’s a little bit of a pity though that they don’t sound quite as “Russian” as they used to – specifically the brass vibrato which they don’t really do anymore. It may not be the “correct” style for Wagner but it sounded great.

  3. Kris helsen says:

    When the mariinsky visited the hk arts festival a few years ago, they performed the 3rd act of the Walkure, while the orchestra was grand, the singing by an all Russian cast was horrible, ESP the male voices.
    One of the male singers almost lost his voice (maybe he had a bad cold) and the German was all mangled up.

  4. harold braun says:

    It IS fantastic.For my money,he is the most inspiring conductor of our time.

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