Opera enthusiasts from all over the world will be drawn to Germany’s cultural capital in September for Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen at the recently re-opened Berlin Staatsoper Unter der Linden. This will mark the Staatsoper’s first ‘Ring’ since the state-of-the-art renovation was completed last year. We have been waiting a long time to re-enter the historic theatre and to renew our experience with the Staatsoper’s great operatic tradition. Two complete four-opera cycles will be conducted by General Music Director Daniel Barenboim, and the co-production with La Scala is directed by Guy Cassiers with scenic and lighting designs by Enrico Bagnoli. With an exceptional international cast, both cycles are already sold out. Our own optimum orchestra seats are confirmed.

A starry cast of today’s leading interpreters of Wagner’s iconic roles has been assembled by Barenboim: Swedish dramatic soprano Iréne Theorin as Brünnhilde, repeating her triumph from San Francisco last spring; German bass-baritone Michael Volle as Wotan, following his acclaimed recent MET portrayal; the versatile New Zealand tenor Simon O’Neill (a fine Otello in addition to his Wagner credentials) as Siegmund, opposite Germany’s radiant soprano Anja Kampe as Sieglinde; and the youthful Austrian heldentenor Andreas Schager as a compelling Siegfried. Also among the large international roster are Jochen Schmeckenbecher (Alberich), Falk Struckmann (Hunding & Hagen), Ekaterina Gubanova (Fricka), Anna Larsson (Erda), Stephan Rügamer (Mime & Loge), and Roman Trekel (Donner & Gunther). Remaining cast TBA. 

The Belgian-Flemish director Guy Cassiers has “developed a theatrical language” which incorporates “technology and poetry, images and music, the camera and the actor’s craft” (Opéra de Paris). The production is envisioned in an anonymous setting, and the costumes of long dresses (for women) and suits or equivalent (for men) suggest a contemporary time-period. The evolving action is conveyed by use of Enrico Bagnoli’s extensive projections, often in beautiful bright colors (green for the earth, red for Nibelheim, gold for Valhalla), thereby eliminating any need to close the curtain for scene changes and allowing for a seamless visual narrative. Maestro Daniel Barenboim is widely recognized as one of today’s foremost Wagner interpreters: “The Staatskapelle Berlin players responded to Mr. Barenboim’s command with great artistry, playing with subtle beauty and clarity, with winds and brass sections making notable contributions.” (Bachtrack). 

We will attend the Second Cycle, with performance dates on Saturday, September 21st (Das Rheingold); Sunday, September 22nd (Die Walküre); Thursday, September 26th (Siegfried); and Sunday, September 29th (Die Götterdämmerung).

Accommodations for a leisurely ten nights with an elaborate buffet breakfast at the Hotel Bristol Berlin. Combining old-world appointments and personal service with renovated furnishings, the Kempinski is a famous landmark and meeting place in Berlin. Located on the corner of the throbbing Kurfürstendamm (‘K’damm’) adjacent to the city’s prime shopping area, the Kempinski features an indoor swimming pool and health club (complimentary for hotel guests) and several excellent restaurants. The gourmet Bristol Grill remains open for late suppers after the opera, and Reinhard’s on K’damm offers convenient all-day dining. The Bristol Bar and Bristol Café are genial gathering spots for drinks and lighter fare.  All of our rooms are confirmed in the hotel’s upgraded Executive category.

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Prices Per Person (Air Fare not Included)

Double Occupancy: $6,900
Single Occupancy: $8,050