Bayreuth Festival to feature two open-air performances again in 2023

1 min read
Richard Wagner House in Riga. Credit line: Alexander Welscher / DPA / Profimedia

Bayreuth’s Richard Wagner Festival has published the programme for the coming summer, starting in the traditional way with “Parsifal” and the “Ring” and featuring two open-air performances again.

The world-famous festival in the southern German town will start on July 25, 2023 with a new “Parsifal” in 3D directed by US professor of music and theatre arts Jay Scheib. 

There had already been debates about the new production recently as only a few spectators will be able to fully enjoy the new 3D “Parsifal.” For financial reasons, only 330 augmented reality glasses will be purchased – although there is room for almost 2,000 people in the festival theatre’s auditorium. 

The title role is to be sung by Joseph Calleja, who is making his Bayreuth debut. Pablo Heras-Casado is the musical director.

The festival programme officially begins in the Bavarian town on July 24. Festival director Katharina Wagner is once again inviting the public to an open-air event with free admission. 

Last summer, the two concerts of the Festival Orchestra and several soloists were very well received, especially by the people in the Bayreuth region. 

The programme again includes the four-part “Ring of the Nibelung” directed by Valentin Schwarz. The production was highly controversial at its premiere last summer and triggered veritable storms of protest in the theatre hall. 

Also on the programme: “Tristan and Isolde,” “Tannhäuser” and “The Flying Dutchman.”

The “Tannhäuser” performance will be the first time Nathalie Stutzmann, the music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, conducts in Bayreuth. 

John Lundgren, who had pulled out of the role in 2022, is scheduled to sing “The Flying Dutchman.” (dpa)

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