Richard Wagner (1813 – 1883)

Information on the piece

Opera and poem by Richard Wagner
First performed on 26th July, 1882 in Bayreuth
Premiered at the Deutsche Oper Berlin on 21. October, 2012

5 hrs 30 mins / 2 intervals

In German language with German and English surtitles

Pre-performance lecture (in German): 45 minutes prior to each performance

recommended from 16 years
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Our thanks to our partners

Kindly supported by Förderkreis der Deutschen Oper Berlin and by Lotto Stiftung Berlin. The children's chorus is supported by Dobolino e. V.

About the performance

About the work
Drawing loosely on motifs from Christianity, Buddhism, assorted legends and Schopenhauer’s philosophy, Richard Wagner eventually completed a myth of his own, PARSIFAL. The work that he dubbed a “stage-hallowing play” tells the story of a “pure fool” who is blissfully unaware of his own nature and calling. Parsifal sallies forth into the ascetic brotherhood of the Knights of the Grail and into another very different world, that of Klingsor’s erotically charged garden, where a kiss from Kundry infuses him with an enlightenment that leads him to release Amfortas, the King of the Grail, from his suffering and redeem the brotherhood.

Wagner himself harboured a desire for redemption for decades and PARSIFAL was the channel through which he wrestled with the theme of spiritual rescue on both a personal and societal level. He shows society yearning for a strong leader as the architect of its own renewal. However, not even the installation of Parsifal as the new king can break the stagnated ritual of wielded power.

About the production
Philipp Stölzl is concerned here more than anything with the potential for aggression and the fanaticism of hermetic religious communities. An anti-enlightenment attitude, faith in miracles and an at times violent segregation from outsiders such as Kundry are themes that are reflected in opulent tableaux on this journey through the millennia.

Our recommendations

Tristan and Isolde
Tannhäuser and the Singers' Contest at Wartburg
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg
Der Ring des Nibelungen – Das Rheingold
Der Ring des Nibelungen – Die Walküre
Der Ring des Nibelungen – Siegfried
Der Ring des Nibelungen – Götterdämmerung


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Adventskalender im Foyer: Das 7. Fensterchen

Today in the foyer: "Now Christmas is here again"
with the small choir of the children's chorus, Rosemarie Arzt and Jisu Park
5.00 p.m. / Parquet foyer
Duration: approx. 25 minutes / free admission

Before joining the large children's and youth chorus of the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the basics of choral singing must be learnt from the ground up. That's why there's the small chorus in the children's chorus. Here, under the expert direction of Rosemarie Arzt, children between the ages of 6 and 10 practise and learn to sing. Today you can experience the smallest of the little ones with their Advent and Christmas programme and songs such as "Jetzt ist wieder Weihnacht da" or "Lied von den Schneeflocken".

Around 150 active singers make up our children's chorus, which is an important and heavily involved ensemble partner in numerous operas. The members come together at least twice a week to make music under the direction of Christian Lindhorst. Over the course of the 2023/24 season, the children and young people aged between 9 and 16 have performed in CARMEN, PAGLIACCI, LA BOHÈME, MATTHÄUS-PASSION, HÄNSEL UND GRETEL, PARSIFAL, PIQUE DAME, TOSCA and TURANDOT. Since last season, choral soloists from the children's and youth choir have also sung the part of the three boys in performances of DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE. In external performances and concerts at venues such as the Chamber Music Hall of the Philharmonie, the children's chorus of Deutsche Oper Berlin covers a range from baroque to modern. On 17 December 2023, the chorus will perform Johann Sebastian Bach's "Christmas Oratorio" together with the Kammersymphonie Berlin at the Apostel-Paulus-Kirche in Schöneberg. Two solo sopranos - Erik Kellner and Klara Gothe - are cast from the choir's own ranks!

The children's chorus is sponsored by Dobolino e.V.