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Die Walküre at Reykjavík Arts Festival – Iceland Symphony and the Icelandic Opera

Richard’s Wagner’s Ring of the Nibelung is without doubt one of the most ambitious operatic works in the history of Western music. It comprises four separate operas, which Wagner based not only on the German Nibelungenlied but also on the Poetic Edda, the Prose Edda, and Völsunga Saga, which he had in German translation. He worked for a quarter-century on the Ring cycle, which puts his genius as composer and librettist on full display.

The story line of The Valkyrie comes largely from Völsunga Saga. A tempest is raging, and Siegmund seeks shelter in the home of Sieglinde and her husband, Hunding. He and Sieglinde fall in love, and the Valkyrie Brünnhilde, daughter of Wotan, disobeys her father by helping Siegmund in his bid to fight a duel with Hunding. Wotan punishes her by stripping her of her divine status as a Valkyrie, transforming her into a mortal woman. He condemns her to lie sleeping on the mountain surrounded by flames until an intrepid hero awakens her with a kiss.

This opulent musical drama is one of the masterpieces of the 19th century, and the famous Ride of the Valkyries is well known to most music lovers. This is the first time The Valkyrie has been performed in its entirety in Iceland and the first time since 2002 that a full Wagner opera has been programmed.

Soprano Iréne Theorin sings Brünnhilde, a role she has sung at the Staatsoper Berlin with conductor Daniel Barenboim. Wotan is sung by Ólafur Kjartan Sigurðarson, and the Valkyries are performed by a stunning group of Icelandic singers.

The orchestra is conducted by Eva Ollikainen, Iceland Symphony’s Chief Conductor. The opera director, Julia Burbach, is on the permanent staff at London’s Covent Garden. Tal Rosner is a BAFTA-winning video designer and director who has worked at the National Theatre in London and Lincoln Center in New York.

The Valkyrie is a collaborative effort of the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, the Icelandic Opera, and the Reykjavík Arts Festival and is a co-production from the Opéra National de Bordeaux.

The performance takes five hours with two intermissions (45 and 30 minutes).

New dates for Die Walküre
Die Walküre was originally planned on May 27th and 29th 2020 but was postponed to February 2021 due to the pandemic. New dates for Die Walküre have now been published for 2022. Concertgoers that had tickets to the event will automatically have a ticket on the new date in the same seats as before.
February 24th 2022 at 18:00 (was February 25th 2021)
February 26th 2022 at 16:00 (was February 27th 2021)

  • Program

    Richard Wagner: Die Walküre (The Valkyrie)

    CONDUCTOR
    Eva Ollikainen

    DIRECTORS
    Julia Burbach og Tal Rosner

    VIDEO
    Tal Rosner

    CAST
    Iréne Theorin Brünnhilde
    Christopher Ventris Siegmund
    Christa Mayer Fricka
    Claire Rutter Sieglinde
    Ólafur Kjartan Sigurðarson Wotan
    Kristinn Sigmundsson Hunding
    Lilja Guðmundsdóttir Helmwige
    Sigrún Pálmadóttir Gerhilde
    Margrét Hrafnsdóttir Ortlinde
    Sigríður Ósk Kristjánsdóttir Waltraute
    Agnes Thorsteins Siegrune
    Guja Sandholt Roβweiβe
    Hildigunnur Einarsdóttir Grimgerde
    Svanhildur Rósa Pálmadóttir Schwertleite

All dates

  • February 2022
  • 24. Feb 2022 – Time. 18–23
  • 26. Feb 2022 – Time. 16–21
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