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Our Revenge on Wagner

Jewish opera buffs make buffa of Wagner’s opera

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In the New York Review of Books, Shakespeare scholar Stephen Greenblatt refers, in the course of a (subscription-only) essay on Richard Wagner’s Ring cycle, to “Wagner’s vicious anti-Semitism and about the playful attempt by my Wagner-loving Jewish friends to counter its poisonous effects by standing out on the balcony during the intermission and dining on whitefish salad and bagels.”

That’ll show him!

The Lonely Gods [NYRB]

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Marcia Almey says:

No lox?

Do they allow lox in at Bayreuth? Alana?

John Brosseau says:

During his life, Jews loved Wagner. Wagner’s giant productions required
larger stages. Jewish communities gave generously. How else do you
get a name like Sigmund Freud. Later, of course, the situation was
different.

Well, Wagner believed he might have been part Jewish, owing to the cloudy circumstances under which he was born. Jewish money was also essential to building Bayreuth, and Wagner insisted, over his objections, that Hermann Levi conduct Parsifal. The profound connections went both ways.

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Our Revenge on Wagner

Jewish opera buffs make buffa of Wagner’s opera

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