Richard Wagner

Tristan und Isolde

Tristan und Isolde opens the Met season in a new production by Mariusz Treliński (the director responsible for the 201415 season’s double bill of Iolanta and Bluebeard’s Castle), and will be well served by a cast of outstanding Wagnerians: Nina Stemme as Isolde, Stuart Skelton as Tristan, Ekaterina Gubanova as Brangäne, and René Pape as King Marke, with Sir Simon Rattle conducting, in one of his rare appearances at the Met.

An “audacious new production… Compelling, vulnerable performances… from a strong cast, especially the astonishing soprano Nina Stemme… [Her Isolde is] outstanding... from steely rawness to melting warmth.” Stuart Skelton “sings with musical integrity and feeling.” Simon Rattle conducts with “impressively balanced clarity and richness, coolness and intensity, intelligence and impetuosity.”
New York Times

Production a gift of the Estates of Alan and Ruth Broder

Additional funding from Marina Kellen French and the Gramma Fisher Foundation, Marshalltown, Iowa

Co-production of the Metropolitan Opera, Festival Hall Baden-Baden, Teatr Wielki–Polish National Opera, and China National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) Beijing

Read Synopsis Read Program
  • Sung In
  • German
  • Met Titles In
  • English
  • German
  • Spanish
  • Estimated Run Time
  • 4 hrs 47 mins
  • House Opens
  • Act I 80 mins
  • Intermission 30 mins
  • Act II 70 mins
  • Intermission 30 mins
  • Act III 77 mins
  • Opera Ends
New Production Sep 26 - Oct 27 Buy Tickets from $27 Buy Gala Tickets

Cast

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World premiere: Munich Court Theater, 1865. Wagner’s breathtaking meditation on love and death holds a unique place in the opera world. Its music has astounded, infuriated, and inspired audiences since it was first heard, and the title roles are acknowledged as among the most extraordinarily demanding in opera. The vocal challenges, the sumptuous symphonic scale of the orchestral writing, and the mystical nature of the story, with its opportunities for creative visual design, make this awe-inspiring work a phenomenon of the repertory.

Creators

Richard Wagner (1813–1883) was the controversial creator of music-drama masterpieces that stand at the center of today’s operatic repertory. An artistic revolutionary who reimagined every supposition about theater, Wagner insisted that words and music were equals in his works. This approach led to the idea of the Gesamtkunstwerk, or “total work of art,” combining music, poetry, architecture, painting, and other disciplines, a notion that has had an impact on creative fields far beyond opera.

Production Mariusz Trelinski

Set Designer Boris Kudlicka

Costume Designer Marek Adamski

Lighting Designer Marc Heinz

Projection Designer Bartek Macias

Choreographer Tomasz Wygoda

Dramaturg Piotr Gruszczynski

Dramaturg Adam Radecki

Richard Wagner

Composer

Richard Wagner

Setting

The three acts of the opera are originally set, respectively, aboard ship on the Irish Sea, in Cornwall (southwestern Britain), and in Brittany (northwestern France). The many versions of this story all pay homage to the Celtic ambience and probable origin of the tale. Wagner’s preservation of this context emphasizes several key themes associated with ancient Celtic culture: mysticism, knowledge of the magic arts, an evolved warrior code, and a distinctly non-Christian vision of the possibilities of the afterlife.

Music