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The booklet to the DVD implies that Guy Cassier’s production will focus on capitalism and delve into the philosophical web underpinning the Ring, but viewing reveals a spectacular but bland production. It must have looked wonderful in the theatre – grand, shadowy and with some inventive projections – but the characters are generally restricted to the front of the stage and channel no cohesive directorial insight: those singers with dramatic ability cope better than those without. Vitalij Kowaljow as Wotan offers a smooth line, good top and a sense of stillness, in fact rather too much. Simon O’Neill is a tireless Siegmund and roused to dramatic heights by his outstanding Sieglinde, Waltraud Meier. Nina Stemme’s sheer presence and flood of rich tone make a strong Brünnhilde. Daniel Barenboim’s pulsing conducting is superlative.

Francis Muzzu Read the full review on Agora Classica

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