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Wagner Richard
Die Feen
Act I
Act II
Feen, Die (The Fairies)
  • Richard Wagner. Tragedia lirica in three acts. 1834.
  • Libretto by the composer, after Gozzi's La donna serpente (The Serpent Woman).
  • First performance at the Königliches Hof-und Nationaltheater, Munich, on 29th June 1888.

Prefiguring Lohengrin, Ada, half fairy, half mortal, marries Arindal, King of Tramond, who is told not to ask her name. He asks, however, and her magic kingdom disappears. To rejoin him, she must try him in a series of tests in which he is unsuccessful, leaving her turned to stone for a hundred years. Like Orpheus he brings her to life from the underworld by the power of music and lives with her thereafter in fairyland.

Wagner's first opera follows the tradition of German romantic magic opera, established by Weber and Marschner, successfully enough, although this was not a path that he was to pursue. The work was first performed in Munich five years after his death.


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