Parsifal

 

Wagner Parsifal opera to a libretto by the composer. Directed 2016 by Uwe Eric Laufenberg at the Bayreuth Festival. Stars Ryan McKinny (Amfortas), Karl-Heinz Lehner (Titurel), Georg Zeppenfeld (Gurnemanz), Klaus Florian Vogt (Parsifal), Gerd Grochowski (Klingsor), Elena Pankratova (Kundry), Tansel Akzeybek (First Knight of the Grail), Timo Riihonen (Second Knight of the Grail), Alexandra Steiner (1st Squire), Mareike Morr (2nd Squire), Charles Kim (3rd Squire), Stefan Heibach (4th Squire), Anna Siminska, Katharina Persicke, Mareike Morr, Alexandra Steiner, Bele Kumberger, Ingeborg Gillebo (Flower Maidens), and Wiebke Lehmkuhl (Voice from Heaven). Hartmut Haenchen conducts the Bayreuth Festival Orchestra and Chorus (Chorus Master Eberhard Friedrich).  Stage design by Gisbert Jäkel; costumes by Jessica Karge; lighting by Reinhard Traub, dramaturgy by Richard Lorber, video designs by Gérard Naziri. Directed for video by Michael Beyer. Released 2017, disc has 5.0 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

We now have 8 HDVDs of Parsifal! It would take a whole workweek to carefully watch all them just once.

This latest version from Bayreuth refers to modern times in the Middle East and created security problems in Bayreuth. Print critics have been generally favorable. For example, David Baker, writing in the December 2017 Opera News (page 54) states that "musical splendor comensates for the festival's customary excesses in staging." Further, "the heavy string vibratos, the 'spiritual' hush, and glacial pacing that signaled awe and reverence" in other productions are replaced by conductor Haenchen's "impeccable instrumental articulation."

Below are three images I found on the Internet that were not protected by individual copyright notices (and are probably not directly from the DG recording that published in DVD and Blu-ray):

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Here are the Flowermaidens. Underneath they are wearing outfits that are much more colorful:

And next below is a YouTube clip with more about the flower maids: