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Her Majesty’s Theatre. Haymarket Season 1882. Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen. A Festival Play for four Nights. Director, Mr. Angelo Neumann, who has been entrusted by Herr Richard Wagner with the sole right of its Performance, and under whose management the brilliant renderings of this unique work were lately given in Berlin and other German Cities with extraordinary success First Cycle: May 5, 6, 8, 9
[London:] Mallett, Printer . 1882 - Playbill, slim folio (480 × 161 mm); creased where previously folded; in very good condition overall. [and:] Mr. J. H. Mapleson has the Honor to announce the Production of Richard Wagner’s »Der Ring des Nibelungen« a Festival-Play for four Nights at Her Majesty’s Theatre, Haymarket under the Management of Mr. Angelo Neumann. Artistic-Director. In the Presence of the Poet-Composer Richard Wagner. By special Permission of the H. M. the King of Bavaria. The gorgeous Scenery, magnificent Costumes, Armours etc. which have been so much admired at the Bayreuth Festival-Plays will also be used at Her Majesty’s Theatre. [Colophon:] Leipzig, Giesecke & Devrient, Printers. [1882]. Small 4to (275 × 219 mm), pp. [4]; printed in red and black, with portrait of Wagner to p. [1] and a vignette depicting characters from each part of the Ring to p. [4]; untrimmed, as issued; creased where previously folded, some light dust-soiling, short tear along spine. Very rare: an original playbill for the first London cycle of Wagner’s Ring, the complete work’s first performance outside the German-speaking world, and a promotional flyer for the performance, produced in Germany for distribution in London. The Austrian impresario Angelo Neumann secured the performing rights for the Ring (and the Bayreuth stage equipment) from Wagner himself, intending to give 36 cycles in nine months. He planned to open his campaign in London, and visited in October 1881 to inspect the stage at Her Majesty’s Theatre, and again in April 1882 with his entire technical staff, just a month before the first performance was to take place. Although the Theatre was in theory ready, it reneged on its contract and it fell to Neumann to arrange everything, from the orchestra and chorus to the advertising (presumably why the flyer here was printed in Leipzig), even the carpets in the foyer. Wagner’s health prevented his attending either rehearsals or performance, but Neumann was nevertheless ‘very successful with his first production of the Ring in London. Thanks to an introduction from the German Crown Prince he managed to get the Prince of Wales (afterwards King Edward VII) to attend no fewer than eleven of the performances. [He was particularly taken with the swimming Rhine Maidens.] Neumann’s company was an excellent one, including as it did Hedwig Reicher-Kindermann, Scaria, Schelper, the two Vogls, and Reichmann, with Seidl as conductor’ (Newman, The Life of Richard Wagner, IV, 673), ‘according to Richard Wagner’s own opinion, the best interpreter of his works’ (p. [2] of the flyer here).
      [Bookseller: Simon Beattie ABA ILAB]
Last Found On: 2013-07-20           Check availability:      AbeBooks    

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