Saturday, April 25, 2009


The last opera of the NY Met Opera broadcast season is Götterdämmerung. I remember the first time I heard the synopsis of it. It seemed a silly letdown, with an unmotivated climax.

How come everything catches fire? Why does the death of this human woman destroy the gods? The series has had giants and gods and dragons and wild valkyries and it comes down with a thump into a love triangle with a magic potion. And why is the ring's curse always just a little offstage, with plausible deniability ringing it round?

OK, I'm a little older now, and I think I get the point: the woman Brünnhilde is still a valkyrie with power to destroy, and the ring gives its power to someone who forswears love--and her suicide does that rather emphatically. So the ending makes logical sense. It still doesn't seem quite fitting; not quite dramatically motivated.

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