Stats update – I passed!

by Maria on November 14, 2004

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by Chris Bertram on November 14, 2004

I spent yesterday afternoon and evening watching the third part of Phyllida Lloyd’s new production of the Ring for ENO. (See also my reactions to “The Rhinegold”: and “The Valkyrie”: ). “Siegfried”: has to be my least favourite of the Ring operas, but that didn’t stop me from having a thoroughly good time. The reason it’s my least favourite is that this part of the Ring is a very unsatisfactory piece of work. For one thing, the eponymous “hero” (sung by Richard Berkeley-Steele) is an unattractive oaf, and for another, the villain of the first two acts is an anti-semitic caricature. Finally, the music undergoes a massive shift in quality and tone between Act 2 and Act 3, as a result of Wagner having developed a new musical language during the twelve years he put the work aside. But, but …

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Iraq: A War of Liberation

by John Q on November 14, 2004

Supporters of both sides in the war in Iraq, and particularly those who are or were associated with the left, have described it as a “war of liberation”. Here, for example, is John Pilger and here is Norman Geras. Presumably Geras and Pilger each think the other is wrong.

The obvious position for an opponent of the war is that both are wrong. On reflection though, I think that Geras and Pilger are both right.

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