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Thinking with opera, Episode 7: Parsifal part 3

Paul Mason and Frank Finlay

“What is the tension between this ugly ideology, the beauty of the music, and the agony of the man producing it?”

The final podcast of our trilogy focusing on Wagner’s epic last opera is a wide-ranging, unflinching discussion between the journalist, writer and filmmaker Paul Mason and Professor Frank Finlay of the University of Leeds.

Paul and Frank trace the composer’s changing philosophical viewpoints, and his antisemitism is discussed in the context of his works and the problems it presents for their audiences. Another tension – between the composer’s anti-modernist, proto-fascist sympathies, and the radicalism in his music – is identified.

Excerpts of the cast, Chorus and Orchestra of Opera North in rehearsals for the 2022 concert staging of Parsifal are heard throughout.

Listen and subscribe on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.


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