The Houston Grand Opera broadcast series concludes on Classical 90.5 at noon this Saturday, November 30, with a performance of Tristan and Isolde by Richard Wagner, set to a German libretto by the composer that was largely based on the romance by Gottfried von Straßburg. The performance will be sung in German and will run approximately three hours and forty-five minutes.
Nearly 150 years after its premiere in 1865, Wagner’s tour de force of love, desire, revenge, redemption, and humanity remains one of the most influential musical works of history. Houston Grand Opera artistic and music director Patrick Summers notes that “Tristan and Isolde undoubtedly altered the course of Western music. It is the apotheosis of the pre-Freudian era. It is, paradoxically, one of the great love stories ever told while simultaneously being about the oblivion of death. To me, it is the musical manifestation of Hamlet’s famous final utterance – ‘the rest is silence’.”