1
of

Das Rheingold

Friday April 11, 2014 - Saturday April 26, 2014

Brown Theater, Wortham Theater Center  



Overview

BRILLIANT. MAJESTIC. VIBRANT.

Join us for a dazzling seven-opera season! With international stars, an American premiere, and impeccable performances, you'll see what makes HGO an important voice on the world's musical stage. And you can see it all for as little as $15 a ticket!


Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold
Sung in German with projected English translation

April 11, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. | April 13, 2014 - 2:00 p.m. | April 17, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
April 23, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. | April 26, 2014  - 7:30 p.m. 

This stunning production takes us to a mythical world of dwarfs and gods, magical helmets, and a ring that endows its wearer with ultimate power. 

Deep beneath the surface of the Rhine, Alberich, a wily and treacherous dwarf, lusts after the Rhinemaidens' treasure: a cache of gold.Whoever owns the gold and forges it into a ring will have power over the world. Unable to catch one of the beautiful maidens, Alberich steals the gold.

And so, the legend of the ring, the greatest musical achievement of all time, begins.

"Iain Paterson, a fine Scottish bass-baritone making an impressive American debut, did everything he could with the sinister, charmless bully he was directed to portray. He sang splendidly. This is a talent to watch." - Chicago Tribune

"... the evening's runaway star was tenor Stefan Margita as the wily Loge. Singing with clarity and an exhilarating vein of sardonic insinuation, he brought both vocal allure and nimble theatrical inventiveness to the role." - San Francisco Chronicle

Cast
Wotan - Iain Paterson
Loge - Stefan Margita 
Alberich - Christopher Purves 
Mime - Rodell Rosel
Fricka - Jamie Barton 
Erda - Meredith Arwady 
Fasolt - Kristinn Sigmundsson 
Fafner - Andrea Silvestrelli 
Freia - Melody Moore
Donner - Ryan McKinny
Froh - Chad Shelton
Woglinde - Andrea Carroll
Flosshilde - Renee Tatum
Wellgunde - Catherine Martin 

Creative Team
Conductor - Patrick Summers - Margaret Alkek Williams Chair
Director - Carlus Padrissa/La Fura Dels Baus 
Associate Director - Esteban Muñoz
Set Designer - Roland Olbeter
Costume Designer - Chu Uroz 
Lighting Designer - Peter van Praet 
Video Designer - Franc Aleu
Houston Grand Opera Orchestra  

Premier Guarantor
Houston Grand Opera Endowment, Inc. 
Mr. John G. Turner and Mr. Jerry G. Fischer

Grand Guarantor
Medistar Corporation

Guarantors   
Robin Angly and Miles Smith
Birgitt van Wijk
BBVA Compass

Grand Underwriters
The Brown Foundation Inc.
Carol Franc Buck Foundation
Chevron
Mr. Richard A. Lydecker Jr.
Will L. McLendon 
  

Co-production of Palau de les Arts "Reina Sofia," Valencia and Maggio Musicale, Florence  

Photo by Tato Baeza/Palau de les Arts "Reina Sofia"  

Synopsis

Synopsis: Das Rheingold

Scene 1 
The Rhinemaidens-Woglinde, Wellgunde, and Flosshilde-frolic in the waters of the Rhine while they guard the river's golden treasure. The Nibelung dwarf Alberich emerges from his underground home and eyes them lasciviously. To teach him a lesson, the Rhinemaidens begin to tease and mock him. Suddenly, Alberich sees the sun glinting on the Rhine gold. The Rhinemaidens explain that the gold is so powerful that if it were fashioned into a ring, it would give the wearer power to rule the world-but to gain such power, the possessor of the gold must renounce love. The Nibelung- humiliated and angered by their mocking-curses love and steals the gold.

Scene 2 
Wotan, king of the gods, is reproached by his wife, Fricka, for having promised her sister Freia to the giants Fasolt and Fafner in return for building Valhalla, the fortress of the gods. Wotan tells Fricka not to worry: he never meant to honor his end of the bargain-in fact, he has instructed his servant Loge, the god of fire, to find a suitable alternative payment. 
When the giants attempt to claim Freia, Wotan tells them that they must settle for another form of payment, but Fasolt, smitten with Freia, points out that Wotan is bound by law to honor the terms of the contract. 
Loge comes forth to tell Wotan he has found an alternative payment: the Rhine gold. He relates how Alberich stole it and forged it into a ring that has given him tremendous power and wealth. The giants agree to accept Alberich's riches in lieu of Freia, but they take her hostage until they get their payment. 
Wotan and Loge set out for the dwarves' home, Nibelheim, to steal the treasure from Alberich. 

Scene 3 
In Nibelheim, Wotan and Loge discover that Alberich has used his power to enslave the other dwarves. Alberich has forced his brother, Mime, to forge a magic helmet (the Tarnhelm) that can make the wearer invisible or change into any shape or size. Alberich regards Wotan and Loge with suspicion and warns them of his plan to overthrow the gods using the power of the Tarnhelm. Wotan and Loge ask him to demonstrate the Tarnhelm's power, and Alberich turns into a dragon and then-goaded by the gods-into a toad. The gods easily capture him and take him to Valhalla.

Scene 4 
Wotan and Loge force Alberich to give up his riches, including the ring, in exchange for his freedom. Outraged, Alberich places a curse on the ring-anyone who wears it will be destroyed. 
When the giants come for their gold, Wotan tries to keep the ring for himself. He hands it over only after being sternly warned by Erda, goddess of the earth, that it will bring about the downfall of the gods. Upon receiving the ring, the giants return Freia. Alberich's curse begins to take effect, and Fafner kills Fasolt in a struggle over the treasure. 
Donner creates a rainbow bridge to Valhalla, and Wotan leads the other gods across it. 
Loge mocks them, while the Rhinemaidens are heard mourning the loss of their treasure. 

Cast/Creative Team

Creative Team

Patrick Summers
Conductor

Carlus Padrissa*
Director

Esteban Munoz*
Associate Director

Roland Olbeter*
Set Designer

Chu Uroz*
Costume Designer

Peter van Praet*
Lighting Designer

Frank Aleu*
Video Designer

* HGO debut
** HGO Studio Artist
*** Former HGO Studio Artist

Support HGO

Donate Now Button on Support HGO 

To give by phone or for more information, contact Rebecca Kier at 713-546-0252 or rkier@houstongrandopera.org.

To submit your gift by mail, please use this form.

Loyal donors are behind each performance at Houston Grand Opera.
We can’t do it without you; please consider making a gift today!

Donate Now  

BRILLIANT. MAJESTIC. VIBRANT.

Join us for a dazzling seven-opera season! With international stars, an American premiere, and impeccable performances, you'll see what makes HGO an important voice on the world's musical stage. And you can see it all for as little as $15 a ticket!


Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold
Sung in German with projected English translation

April 11, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. | April 13, 2014 - 2:00 p.m. | April 17, 2014 - 7:30 p.m.
April 23, 2014 - 7:30 p.m. | April 26, 2014  - 7:30 p.m. 

This stunning production takes us to a mythical world of dwarfs and gods, magical helmets, and a ring that endows its wearer with ultimate power. 

Deep beneath the surface of the Rhine, Alberich, a wily and treacherous dwarf, lusts after the Rhinemaidens' treasure: a cache of gold.Whoever owns the gold and forges it into a ring will have power over the world. Unable to catch one of the beautiful maidens, Alberich steals the gold.

And so, the legend of the ring, the greatest musical achievement of all time, begins.

"Iain Paterson, a fine Scottish bass-baritone making an impressive American debut, did everything he could with the sinister, charmless bully he was directed to portray. He sang splendidly. This is a talent to watch." - Chicago Tribune

"... the evening's runaway star was tenor Stefan Margita as the wily Loge. Singing with clarity and an exhilarating vein of sardonic insinuation, he brought both vocal allure and nimble theatrical inventiveness to the role." - San Francisco Chronicle

Cast
Wotan - Iain Paterson
Loge - Stefan Margita 
Alberich - Christopher Purves 
Mime - Rodell Rosel
Fricka - Jamie Barton 
Erda - Meredith Arwady 
Fasolt - Kristinn Sigmundsson 
Fafner - Andrea Silvestrelli 
Freia - Melody Moore
Donner - Ryan McKinny
Froh - Chad Shelton
Woglinde - Andrea Carroll
Flosshilde - Renee Tatum
Wellgunde - Catherine Martin 

Creative Team
Conductor - Patrick Summers - Margaret Alkek Williams Chair
Director - Carlus Padrissa/La Fura Dels Baus 
Associate Director - Esteban Muñoz
Set Designer - Roland Olbeter
Costume Designer - Chu Uroz 
Lighting Designer - Peter van Praet 
Video Designer - Franc Aleu
Houston Grand Opera Orchestra  

Premier Guarantor
Houston Grand Opera Endowment, Inc. 
Mr. John G. Turner and Mr. Jerry G. Fischer

Grand Guarantor
Medistar Corporation

Guarantors   
Robin Angly and Miles Smith
Birgitt van Wijk
BBVA Compass

Grand Underwriters
The Brown Foundation Inc.
Carol Franc Buck Foundation
Chevron
Mr. Richard A. Lydecker Jr.
Will L. McLendon 
  

Co-production of Palau de les Arts "Reina Sofia," Valencia and Maggio Musicale, Florence  

Photo by Tato Baeza/Palau de les Arts "Reina Sofia"  

Synopsis: Das Rheingold

Scene 1 
The Rhinemaidens-Woglinde, Wellgunde, and Flosshilde-frolic in the waters of the Rhine while they guard the river's golden treasure. The Nibelung dwarf Alberich emerges from his underground home and eyes them lasciviously. To teach him a lesson, the Rhinemaidens begin to tease and mock him. Suddenly, Alberich sees the sun glinting on the Rhine gold. The Rhinemaidens explain that the gold is so powerful that if it were fashioned into a ring, it would give the wearer power to rule the world-but to gain such power, the possessor of the gold must renounce love. The Nibelung- humiliated and angered by their mocking-curses love and steals the gold.

Scene 2 
Wotan, king of the gods, is reproached by his wife, Fricka, for having promised her sister Freia to the giants Fasolt and Fafner in return for building Valhalla, the fortress of the gods. Wotan tells Fricka not to worry: he never meant to honor his end of the bargain-in fact, he has instructed his servant Loge, the god of fire, to find a suitable alternative payment. 
When the giants attempt to claim Freia, Wotan tells them that they must settle for another form of payment, but Fasolt, smitten with Freia, points out that Wotan is bound by law to honor the terms of the contract. 
Loge comes forth to tell Wotan he has found an alternative payment: the Rhine gold. He relates how Alberich stole it and forged it into a ring that has given him tremendous power and wealth. The giants agree to accept Alberich's riches in lieu of Freia, but they take her hostage until they get their payment. 
Wotan and Loge set out for the dwarves' home, Nibelheim, to steal the treasure from Alberich. 

Scene 3 
In Nibelheim, Wotan and Loge discover that Alberich has used his power to enslave the other dwarves. Alberich has forced his brother, Mime, to forge a magic helmet (the Tarnhelm) that can make the wearer invisible or change into any shape or size. Alberich regards Wotan and Loge with suspicion and warns them of his plan to overthrow the gods using the power of the Tarnhelm. Wotan and Loge ask him to demonstrate the Tarnhelm's power, and Alberich turns into a dragon and then-goaded by the gods-into a toad. The gods easily capture him and take him to Valhalla.

Scene 4 
Wotan and Loge force Alberich to give up his riches, including the ring, in exchange for his freedom. Outraged, Alberich places a curse on the ring-anyone who wears it will be destroyed. 
When the giants come for their gold, Wotan tries to keep the ring for himself. He hands it over only after being sternly warned by Erda, goddess of the earth, that it will bring about the downfall of the gods. Upon receiving the ring, the giants return Freia. Alberich's curse begins to take effect, and Fafner kills Fasolt in a struggle over the treasure. 
Donner creates a rainbow bridge to Valhalla, and Wotan leads the other gods across it. 
Loge mocks them, while the Rhinemaidens are heard mourning the loss of their treasure. 

Creative Team

Patrick Summers
Conductor

Carlus Padrissa*
Director

Esteban Munoz*
Associate Director

Roland Olbeter*
Set Designer

Chu Uroz*
Costume Designer

Peter van Praet*
Lighting Designer

Frank Aleu*
Video Designer

* HGO debut
** HGO Studio Artist
*** Former HGO Studio Artist

Donate Now Button on Support HGO 

To give by phone or for more information, contact Rebecca Kier at 713-546-0252 or rkier@houstongrandopera.org.

To submit your gift by mail, please use this form.

Loyal donors are behind each performance at Houston Grand Opera.
We can’t do it without you; please consider making a gift today!

Donate Now  


Ticketed Productions at HGO: Tickets are available for purchase online until 4 p.m. CST on the day of the performance (Noon CST on the day of a matinee performance). Please call our Customer Care Center at 713-228-OPERA (6737) or 800-62-OPERA (800-626-7372) if you have questions or have other ticketing needs. Tickets can also be purchased in person at the HGO box office located at 550 Prairie Street. Box office hours during HGO Season Repertory: Monday-Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday–Noon to curtain (performance days only).

How Many Seats? Groups of ten or more receive discounts and special seating! Please call 713-546-0248 or e-mail groups@HoustonGrandOpera.org to learn more about Group Sales. 

All sales are final. If the performance includes an intermission, latecomers will be seated during that time based on the house staff and ushers’ discretion. The use of cameras or recording devices is strictly forbidden at HGO performances. Dates, casting and programs are subject to change without notice. 

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