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Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung: A Companion (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 4. September 2000


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Synopsis

A literal, word-for-word translation of Wagner's epic masterwork, along with orginal German text. Stewart Spencer's translation is reliable and readable, whilst adhering to the verse form of the original.

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Amazon.com: 17 Rezensionen
73 von 73 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Great addition to any Wagner library 5. Juni 2006
Von Konrad Baumeister - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
This book would be an excellent addition to anyone interesting in Wagner's Ring cycle for a number of reasons.

First, the translation, which takes up three quarters of the book, is well done, with German and English directly compared on a line by line basis, complete with alternate or discarded or rejected versions of the libretto included in an appendix. The translation itself seems outstanding; some of Wagner's phrasing is difficult or impossible to directly translate into English, but even in the most convoluted or confusing cases the result is clear and compelling.

Second, there is a thematic guide to many of the most important leitmotifs Wagner developed (67 in this case), and in the translation of the libretto the authors have noted where these occur on a line by line, or sequential basis. This is of tremendous help as a reference for further study when listening and relistening to the music.

Third, while there is only little commentary on the operas and on Wagner's compositional journey through the Ring, there are a few photos from past performances, comparing vastly different sets for the same scenes, which are interesting. There could have been quite a bit more of this.

Finally, the glossary of character names could be useful to the student.

Overall, this is an excellent resource and reference to use while listening to the Ring, and for analyzing Wagner's libretto itself.
64 von 65 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Useful mainly as a translation 8. August 1998
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
If you are looking for a direct translation(as I was) of the entire Ring, look no further. It is excellant and complete. If you are looking for commentary however, this is not the book for you . There is a brief intro that essentially discusses Wagner's life, philosophy, and musical approach(50 pgs). An 8 page b&w insert is also included. The text is printed side by side with the original German text. Well worth the money to those who have procured a recording of one or all of the operas but need a liberetto.
26 von 26 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Thank you, Mr. Spencer 22. Mai 2006
Von Eric S. Kim - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Thank you, Mr. Spencer. You have given us something very special. You have given us a complete English translation of Der Ring Des Nibelungen, and it's possibly the most Wagnerian translation ever put on paper. You have given us more knowledge about the Ring Cycle by giving us commentaries about Wagner and his mission to change the way we look at operas. You have also given us B & W pictures of recent renderings of the Ring Cycle, from the Bayreuth Festival to the New York Metropolitan Opera. And for that, we are very grateful. A+
21 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Profound Work of Art in its Best English Translation 9. August 2007
Von M. R. Sullivan - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
**Update: I recently contacted the publishers, who wrote they are scheduling a late summer 2010 reprint.**

I teach the Ring Cycle, and I recommend the Spencer/Millington English translation over all others, including the Porter. As an English teacher, I am primarily concerned in a translation's literary value, and I confidently aver this translation as the best in English (I also have a background in German language and literature study). In his poetry, Wagner proves himself a literary genius. Like other masters of language, he deftly balances storytelling, emotion, and philosophy. There are also musicological benefits to this publication, such as notations for motifs where they occur in the text.

Wagner draws from the major medieval versions of the legend, including the Saga of the Volsungs, the Prose Edda, and the Nibelungenlied. Studying these works is crucial to a literary appreciation of the libretti, much as appreciation of Plutarch biographies informs the reading of Shakespeare's plays of antiquity.

Wagner's ambitious work was composed under the nationalistic fervor of 19th Century Germany. He believed "The Nibelungenlied" to be for Germany what "The Iliad" is for Greece or "The Aeneid" is for Rome. Wagner populates his German forests and rivers with mythological gods and faeries, and his human heroes are imbued with heroic courage and strength reminiscent of Achilles and Beowulf.

I highly recommend this translation. There are seldom times a book will inspire aesthetic chills, and it happened several times when reading these libretti. And if you are interested in contextualizing the Siegfried literary tradition, your first stops should be the Nibelungenlied, the Saga of the Volsungs, and the Prose Edda. See also Wagner's libretto for "Tristan and Isolde," another brilliantly written libretto based on a medieval German text, Gottfried von Straussberg's Tristan.
11 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
The most compelling translation in the English language 30. Mai 2007
Von Miguel Campinho - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
My first English Ring was Andrew Porter's "singable" translation. It was my introduction to a world of sound-rhymes that is difficult to render even in German (a running joke in Bayreuth was that singers were asked to first translate the text to German, before starting work!!!). When my focus turned to meaning of words and sentences, I've discovered the Spencer translation, the most up-to-date version available in English. Besides an annotated text (with alternate endings included - previous versions of course...), comparing word roots with Wagner's own sources, we are also presented with introductory essays by Wagner scholars, filled with insight and devoid of one-sidedness so common in music scholarship. For everyone looking for THE version of Der Ring in English.
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