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Subject: Tristan
From: "Jean L. Scarr" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Jean L. Scarr
Date:Fri, 14 Aug 1998 10:57:30 -0400

text/plain (52 lines)

In regard to my post "Day and Night in Seattle - A Yearning
Fulfilled" - (this heading did not accompany the file) I
wish to add a few comments and then I will be quiet on the

In Frances Henry's post on "Tristan" she mentioned the
potion scene.  T and I drink the potion standing and during
the musical interlude they slowly walk to Isolde's couch
and sit facing one another.  The lighting casts them in
silhouette, as Frances stated.  The slightest movement
seemed like shadow play on a screen.  As their hands moved;
as their arms stretch toward one another;as they tentatively
admitted to their mutual love, it was like time standing still.
The marvel of this staging was that you can achieve the resuls
without resorting to overt physical activity.  Truly a
memorable moment which was in my notes but which I forgot to

The titles - I didn't pay much attention to them as they
were high above the stage and from the 4th row, my neck
took a beating.  The second night I was further back, but
wanted to concentrate completely on the music.  What I
did see of them, I liked - brief - accurate, but as always
with "Tristan" - the translated text needs explanation:
For example: Tristan's lines "The queen of silence
bids me be silent:  I grasp what she concealed, I
conceal what she cannot grasp."    Most of his lines are
difficult, at times, to really understand.  While in Seattle
we attended lectures.  A Morry Tolmach, a psychotherapist,
spoke about the character of Tristan - in depth -as
a patient...citing the text as source of his diagnosis.
Very enlightening!

The stage was raised considerably for the cubicle.  The upper
deck of the ship was even higher so that if you sat in the
first few rows of the orchestra, you were constantly looking
upwards.  No sight line problems!

I have sat through a fair number of Wagner productions in
recent years plus some in the distant past, and without
hesitation, this Seattle "Tristan"  is the ultimate in
a Wagnerian experience.  I have sat through some thrilling
moments of "Parsifal", "Meistersinger", the "Ring", but
nothing has compared to what I felt in Seattle for this
"Tristan and Isolde".  It is the power of the score, which
separates it from all other works, but it must be sung and
played well to have the magic delivered.  And delivered
it was!!! Jean

Jean Scarr
[log in to unmask]

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