It is the story of a knight, the prince of Christianity, who comes to the rescue of the mild Elsa of Brabant, to save her from a dishonorable accusation of fratricide. The disappearance of Gottfried, Elsa’s brother, is actually the work of Ortrud the witch, who belongs to the world of the dark divinities of ancient Germany. Lohengrin asks for Elsa’s hand in marraige, but anonymously: as the custodian of the Holy Grail, he cannot say who he is and where he comes from. However, Elsa cannot control her doubt and curiosity, and demands to know who he is. He gives in but is forced to leave forever, this time in a boat pulled by a dove in flight.
Barenboim will be conducting this first opera in which Wagner wove a dense-knit mesh of symbolic musical motifs. The production is staged by director Claus Guth, who aroused no end of admiration last Season with Strauss’s Die Frau ohne Schatten.
CAST: Rene Pape, Jonas Kaufmann, Annette Dasch
DIRECTOR: Claus Guth
RUN TIME: 248 min