What You Need to Know About
at Lyric Opera of Chicago
November 1 – 30
New production dedicated to Sir Andrew Davis, Lyric’s music director and principal conductor, to mark the 30th anniversary of his Lyric debut
Die Walküre focuses on the conflict between Wotan, king of the gods, and his mortal son, Siegmund, who has unwittingly fallen in love with his own twin, Sieglinde, the wife of the brutish Hunding. This arouses the wrath of Wotan’s wife, Fricka (goddess of marriage), and the compassion of Wotan’s daughter, the warrior-maiden Brünnhilde. The turning point of the opera arrives when Brünnhilde disobeys her father by siding with Siegmund in the latter’s fight against Hunding. Both Siegmund and Hunding are killed, and Wotan punishes Brünnhilde.
- Music Director Sir Andrew Davis celebrates his 30th anniversary at Lyric by conducting all performances of Die Walküre — including one on November 14, the actual anniversary date. Lyric is dedicating the new production to Sir Andrew to celebrate this milestone.
- Taboo-breaking love, violated vows, deadly disobedience, fierce retribution. Family dysfunction taken to the limits.
- Provocative, shocking, deeply moving story inspired by Norse mythology.
- Ravishing, dramatic, powerful, tender, sublime music that really tells the story. Every character has a distinctive musical theme.
- If you love Star Wars and Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones…come see what inspired those sagas.
- Before there was Wonder Woman…there was Die Walküre.
- You’ll recognize the exhilarating “Ride of the Valkyries” music from Apocalypse Now, What’s Opera, Doc? and countless commercials. Now hear that glorious music in context, live and brilliantly played by Lyric’s expanded 93-piece orchestra (including Wagner tuba, bass trumpet, and contrabass trombone!) conducted by Ring leader Sir Andrew Davis.
- “Sheer beauty,” “sheer humanity,” “glorious music” are among the phrases Lyric’s general director Anthony Freud uses to describe this monumental yet intimate work.
- Directed by David Pountney, one of the great stage directors in the world.
- Outstanding international creative team: original scenic design by the late Johan Engels; set designer Robert Innes Hopkins, costumes designer Marie-Jeanne Lecca, lighting designer Fabrice Kebour, choreographer Denni Sayers.
- German composer Richard Wagner wrote the entire libretto and music.
- Die Walküre is through-composed — the music flows from one scene to the next.
- It’s a dramatic and musical thrill ride that you’ll never forget, with A-list Wagnerian singers who will blow you away.
- Soprano Elisabet Strid and tenor Brandon Jovanovich as twins Sieglinde and Siegmund will thrill with their rapturous duet before the deadly duel with Hunding, portrayed by bass Ain Anger. (Strid and Anger will both make Lyric debuts in these performances.)
- As Fricka, preserver of sacred marriage vows, mezzo-soprano Tanja Ariane Baumgartner will overpower her willful husband Wotan with her righteous indignation.
- As Wotan, bass-baritone Eric Owens gave the Millennium Park concert audience a taste of what’s to come. 9,000 attendees listened raptly to his heartrending farewell to favorite daughter Brunnhilde as he put her into a trancelike sleep and encircled her with magic fire, to be penetrated only by the bravest of heroes (in Part 3, Siegfried).
- Before the Big Sleep, soprano Christine Goerke will astonish audiences with her powerfully emotional performance as Brünnhilde, capturing perfectly the passionate spirit of a headstrong young woman fighting for what she believes is right.
- These world-class singers will triumph in their demanding marathon roles. All are internationally acclaimed Wagnerians in the absolute prime of their careers.
- The Valkyries sing gloriously — and they ride flying horses.
- Die Walküre stands alone as a brilliant opera — and it’s also part of the mighty Ring cycle. Lyric is presenting one Ring opera per season through 2020, then will perform the full cycle three times over the course of three weeks following the regular 2019/2020 season.
- 7 Performances November 1 – 30 at the Lyric Opera House, 20 N. Wacker Drive, Chicago
- Evening performances start 5:30pm, matinees start 1pm. Doors open an hour before curtain.
- Box suppers available for purchase before performances, for pickup at first intermission.
- More opera for your money! Running time 4 hours 45 minutes, including two intermissions.
- Sung in German with projected English translations.
The opening-night performance of Die Walküre on Wednesday, November 1, can be heard live locally on 98.7WFMT and globally on wfmt.com, beginning at 5:15pm.
For more information and to order tickets, visit lyricopera.org/Walküre or call 312-827-5600.