On Sunday night I crossed the Atlantic for a quick three-day tour, with an emphasis on Wagner and the avant-garde. Details will follow in The New Yorker a week from Monday.
Monday morning: Wagner's "Asyl" in Zurich. The villa was much smaller when Wagner lived there. I also dropped in at the Zürcher James Joyce Stiftung and had the honor of meeting the distinguished scholar Fritz Senn. For anyone who is obsessed with both Wagner and Joyce, Zurich is a paradise of associations.
Monday evening: the view from the KKL, Lucerne. James Gaffigan leads the Lucerne Symphony in the world première of Wolfgang Rihm's symphonic cycle Nähe fern.
Tuesday morning: the glorious Wagner villa in Tribschen. Kudos to the museum for not having the Siegfried-Idyll on continuous loop.
Tuesday evening: Jahrhunderthalle, Bochum. Cage's Europeras 1 and 2 are produced by the Ruhrtriennale. Unfortunately, the brevity of my visit prevented me from taking in the rest of Heiner Goebbels's imaginative musical programming for the festival: Robert Wilson reading the Lecture on Nothing, Orff's Prometheus, Kent Nagano conducting Ives, and Goebbels's new piece When the Mountain changed its clothing.
Wednesday: Argyle Works, Birmingham, England. The Birmingham Opera gives the long-delayed world première of Stockhausen's Mittwoch, the one with the helicopters. It was worth the wait. Read a spate of reviews at The Rambler.