Parsifal on Good Friday, in the city of Wagner’s birth: how could one resist? I had enjoyed Roland Aeschlimann’s 2006 production, a Leipzig co-production with Geneva and Nice, when seeing it two years previously, and for the most part did so again, though there were perhaps some passages, especially during the third act, when its status as a repertory piece was now a little too evident. . . .
Colour, as I wrote last time around, plays an important role, both in demarcating locations and in the dramatic transformations – an especially important concept in this of all Wagner’s dramas – that occur within particular scenes. That is the aspect which perhaps above all puts me in mind of the aforementioned Wernicke Tristan. I remain intrigued and equally uncertain about Aeschlimann’s Grail. Amfortas uncovers something mysterious – no problem there – and holds up a sheet which, by a trick of lighting presents what continues to remind me of a Turin Shroud-vision of Christ.