Interior of a full Festspielhaus

For Act II I switched seats with P13, who had sat in the centre of the second row for Act I.  The floor rake is such that one's view is not disturbed by heads of big hair in front.

The tree/pillars were back, and on a darkened stage hovering 8 ft. or so above the floor was Klingsor, hoarsely shouted by Gunther Von Kannen, whose Alberich in the Barenboim Ring video one may have been trying to forget.  Luckily, at the approach of Parsifal the forklift (or whatever he was travelling upon) reversed back into the darkness of the vast stage, and the Flowermaidens bounced on, maybe forty or so in filmy negligées with their hair showing the effects of a good set of industrial-sized curling tongs.  The trees glowed with pinks and reds and set the mood for the planned seduction of Parsifal.

Of course at the climax of the Act, Klingsor was rapidly wheeled forward from the inky black depths of the stage and he attempted to turn the hero into a kebob.  The spear in Klingsor's hands was just a couple of feet long, which allowed him, when pretending to throw it, to tuck it down inside his cloak.  At that point, with deft timing Elming grabbed a previously unnoticeable man-sized spear from Klingsor's tower, which upon his touch lit up from within.

Parsifal told Kundry "you know where to find me" before the curtain closed on the Act.  There was a brief pause and then a storm of applause. Curtain calls were taken amid the rumble of stamping feet.

Back at the restaurant, pots of coffee were brought forth as the sun began to go down.

Act III found us in the meadow, with the tree/pillars glowing green on two sides.  At the rear of the stage was a curious perspex ball which had water pumping continuously up and over it.  This would provide the foot-washing liquid later.  A semi-circular bench ran behind it, for the singers to sit upon.  The lighting was on the dim side.

The Good Friday music came and went without being particularly moving.  Sinopoli often sounds rather cold-blooded to me....the big moments don't seem to that a word?

The Transformation happened as before and we were now in the Home Stretch.  Again the chorus stole the show!

Amfortas was healed by the glowing spear and the Grail was opened by Parsifal and Kundry, standing with her back to the audience.  The Grail glowed red, and to the sound of that ethereal shimmering music, the curtain...
...very slowly...

A pause of maybe 5 seconds and then all hell broke loose as the audience stamped and hollered.

To be continued......

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