The controversial rendition of Richard Wagners Die Walküre is still at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion for a couple more days. You may recognize scores from Die Walküre, or The Valkyrie from Apocalypse Now, or pretty much any scene from a movie where bombs are getting dropped. The interesting aspect of this otherwise ultra-dated opera is that, aside from the music and singing, everything about this performance is modern. Modern like all the props are made out of neon tubes. And most importantly, Placido Domingo, one of the two remaining Three Tenors, is the leading role.
Much like your favorite Olive Garden commercial, I belong to a fat Italian family. For those of you who dont have the privilege of your very own stereotypical Italian relatives, allow me to explain the relevance of this production. Your Italian grandmother may have one or all of the following portraits in her house, in no particular order: Jesus, Frank Sinatra, Mussolini (depending on how hardcore grandma is), and operatic tenor Luciano Pavarotti. Pavarotti is dead, but he used to be part of a triad called the Three Tenors, one of which was Domingo. I bought my mom tickets to see this Opera as a christmas present and she almost shit herself when she opened the package up. Never in her wildest dreams would she have guessed what this thing was going to end up looking like.
As you can see, this rendition of the opera kinda looks like what would happen if Clive Barker and George Lucas joined Heavens Gate. Neon, Crazy costumes, smoke machines, these are all the makings of an entertaining night at the opera. There was even a mesh screen covering the stage that displayed projections during the performance.
The great thing about this show was that the reason people attended this show, for the timeless score and story of the Valkyrie, remained untouched, and is just as phenomenal as it must’ve been at its 1870 inception.