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Daniel Barenboim conducts Tristan und Isolde in a new audacious production by Russian stage director Dmitri Tcherniakov!

If there is one work that has been crucial to Barenboim’s conducting career, it has to be Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde. From Bayreuth to Berlin through Milan and New York, the Argentinian conductor has been working on piercing its secrets for more than 35 years, going as far as to author a book on the subject. In the pit of the newly renovated Staatsoper and at the head of the Staatskapelle Berlin, he once again makes magic happen.

Dmitri Tcherniakov, no stranger to the work for having already staged it at the Mariinsky in 2005, delves into the psychological aspects of the drama and works to make the mythical lovers as relatable as possible. He thus gives a new realistic depth to this opus, probably the most fascinating among the wagnerian corpus. Act III, which sees the tragic end of Tristan und Isolde’s doomed love affair, is striking by its powerful simplicity, and the famous Liebestod, where Isolde bids farewell to her dead lover, reaches unparalleled levels of emotionality and intensity. Thanks to his demanding direction of the cast, but also to the precise light work by Gleb Filshtinsky, Tcherniakov once again manages to craft intense images which effectively resonate with the rapturous and voluptuous enchantments of the score.

To complete this high-level artistic crew, the Staatsoper called upon some of the finest Wagner experts: Andreas Schager, already a superb Parsifal and a regular guest at the Bayreuth Festival, is Tristan, Anja Kampe is an unforgettable Isolde, and Ekaterina Gubanova thrills as Brangäne.

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