Jonas Kaufmann is the greatest tenor of our time, and he returns to the Sydney Opera House to perform one of opera's most challenging roles in a rare concert performance of Wagner's final opera.
The power and majesty of Wagner's music needs massive orchestral forces. Released from the orchestra pit to fill the stage, the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra, under the conductor Pinchas Steinberg, will be something to behold.
In a story drawn from the Arthurian legends of holy relics, enchanted maidens and faithful knights, the fate of the knights rest on the shoulders of a pure fool, Parsifal. Kaufmann describes the opera as a "transcendent journey led by the music".
From the first, unsettling notes of the prelude, the music makes you believe in something, he says, and it doesn't really matter what. "It's written perfectly. Wagner takes your hand and leads you into this mysterious world, and you stay there for hours but you don't realise the time has gone by."
Lean back, give in to the music, and something extraordinary can happen, Kaufmann says.
A pure fool made wise to save the Knights of the Holy Grail.
A spear with the power to heal and destroy.
Music to make you believe.
Jonas Kaufmann can remember the moment he knew he'd 'made it', in almost filmic detail. It was the night of his Metropolitan Opera debut, and he was standing in the wings waiting to take his solo curtain call. Singing Alfredo opposite Angela Gheorghiu in her signature role, Violetta in La Traviata, Kaufmann was vividly aware that everyone had come to see her.
|Flower Maidens||Stacey Alleaume|
|Julie Lea Goodwin|
|Alto Solo||Anna Yun|
Running time: approximately 5 hours & 30 minutes, including two 30-minute intervals.
Sung in German with English surtitles.