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Das Rheingold (The Rhinegold) - Richard Wagner

Information about the opera Das Rheingold by Richard Wagner, and the best recordings available on CD or DVD, or for download.

The first opera in Wagner's Ring cycle, Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung), in which the gold of the Rhine Maidens, destined to curse gods and men, is stolen by the dwarf Alberich and used to forge the ring which gives its possessor dominion over the world.

Recommended recordings on CD

Thielemann/Dohmen/Breedt (Opus Arte OA CD9001 D)

OA CD9001 D

Bayreuth Festival Orchestra, conducted by Christian Thielemann, 2009.

Cast: Albert Dohmen (Wotan), Michelle Breedt (Fricka), Arnold Bezuyen (Loge), Gerhard Siegel (Mime).

Opus Arte OA CD9001 D

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Keilberth (Testament SBT4 1390)

SBT4 1390

The first part released of this historic Ring cycle, recorded in stereo at the 1955 Bayreuth Festival.

Bayreuth Festival Chorus, Bayreuth Festival Orchestra, conducted by Joseph Keilberth, 1955.

Testament SBT4 1390

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Barenboim/Tomlinson/Finnie (Teldec 4509-91185-2)


An excellent recent live recording, with an outstanding Wotan.

Bayreuth Festival Orchestra, conducted by Daniel Barenboim, 1991.

Cast: John Tomlinson (Wotan), Linda Finnie (Fricka), Graham Clark (Loge), Helmut Pampuch (Mime).

Teldec 4509-91185-2

Recommended recordings on DVD

Haenchen/Bröcheler/Runkel (Opus Arte OA 0946 D)

OA 0946 D

The first part in a new, dramatically different staging of Wagner's Ring cycle integrates the orchestra with the modern sets. Excellent performances, and well recorded.

Hague Residentie Orchestra, conducted by Hartmut Haenchen, 1999.

Cast: John Bröcheler (Wotan), Reinhild Runkel (Fricka), Chris Merritt (Loge), Graham Clark (Mime).

Opus Arte OA 0946 D

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Billy/Struckmann/Braun (Opus Arte OA 0910 D)

OA 0910 D

At last, an almost perfect version of the Ring on DVD, with traditional staging, fine performances, and excellent DTS sound quality.

Symphony Orchestra of the Gran Theatre del Liceu, conducted by Bertrand de Billy, 2004.

Cast: Falk Struckmann (Wotan), Lioba Braun (Fricka), Graham Clark (Loge), Francisco Vas (Mime).

Opus Arte OA 0910 D

Mehta/Uusitalo/Larsson (C Major 700 508)

700 508

In this modern production the Rhinemaidens swim in tanks full of water. A riveting production with excellent music and singing.

Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana, conducted by Zubin Mehta.

Cast: Juha Uusitalo (Wotan), Anna Larsson (Fricka), John Daszak (Loge), Gerhard Siegel (Mime).

C Major 700 508