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Subscription Concerts 2023-2024Program C
No. 1990 Subscription (Program C)


Wagner / Vlieger / The Ring, An Orchestral Adventure

Based on German and Scandinavian legends, Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung) is a music drama for singers and a large orchestra. Consisting of four parts (Das Rheingold [The Rhinegold], Die Walküre [The Valkyrie], Siegfried and Götterdämmerung [Twilight of the Gods]), it takes approximately fifteen hours to perform. Wagner wrote both the libretto and music of this cycle where the drama and the music are indissolubly united on an unprecedented level, especially by the scrupulous use of the numerous leitmotifs (recurrent melodic or/and harmonic elements representing certain characters, feelings, things or so).
Among highly-praised arrangements of this musical epic is The Ring, An Orchestral Adventure (1991). It was prepared for the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra by Henk de Vlieger, then its principal percussionist. Performed seamlessly, this purely-orchestral digest follows the flow of the plot where gods and mortals battle for the magic ring in order to have the power to rule the world.
An Orchestral Adventure starts with I Vorspiel (Prelude) and II Das Rheingold (The Rhinegold) both set in the Rhine River of which Alberich (Nibelung dwarf) steals the gold from the bottom. He then forges it into a ring in III Nibelheim, his kingdom, which resounds with the pounding of anvils. Wotan (ruler of the gods) takes the ring, but parts with it to stay away from the curse put on it by Alberich. The famous music of V Die Walküren (The Valkyries) portrays the warrior maidens on flying horses. These Valkyries are daughters of Wotan and sisters of Brünnhilde who is deprived of immortality for disobeying her father. She is put to sleep fenced around with VI Feuerzauber (The Magic Fire) that only a true hero would not fear. The horn solo opening VIII Siegfrieds Heldentat (Siegfried’s Heroic Deed) represents the braveness of Siegfried (Wotan’s mortal grandson) who becomes the owner of the ring. The young hero goes to wake his future wife up (IX Brünnhildes Erwachen [Brünnhilde’s Awakening]). He gives her the ring as a pledge of fidelity (X Siegfried und Brünnhilde [Siegfried and Brünnhilde]) before Hagen (Alberich’s son) assassinates him (XII Siegfrieds Tod [Siegfried’s Death], XIII Trauermusik [Funeral March]). Brünnhilde burns herself on her husband’s funeral pyre returning the cursed ring to the Rhine at XIV Brünnhildes Opfertat (Brünnhilde’s Immolation) which is ended peacefully by the “redemption-through-love” leitmotif on strings.

[Kumiko Nishi]

*This concert will have a duration of 60 to 80 minutes without an interval.


Fabio Luisi ConductorFabio Luisi

Fabio Luisi hails from Genoa. He is the Principal Conductor of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra and the Music Director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. In September 2022, he assumed the position of Chief Conductor of the NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo.
Fabio Luisi was Principal Conductor of the Metropolitan Opera in New York, General Music Director of the Opernhaus Zürich, Principal Conductor of the Wiener Symphoniker, as well as General Music Director of the Staatskapelle Dresden and the Sächsische Staatsoper, Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of the MDR Sinfonieorchester Leipzig, and Music Director of the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. He is Music Director of the Festival della Valle d’Itria in Martina Franca (Apulia) and has appeared as guest conductor with numerous renowned ensembles, including the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra, the Münchener Philharmoniker, the Filarmonica della Scala, the London Symphony Orchestra, the Concertgebouworkest, and the Saito Kinen Orchestra, while also conducting operas at world’s major opera houses.
Important recordings include Verdi, Bellini, Schumann, Berlioz, Rachmaninov, Rimsky-Korsakov, Frank Martin, and Franz Schmidt, the largely forgotten Austrian composer. In addition, he has recorded various symphonic poems by Richard Strauss, and a lauded reading of Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 with the Staatskapelle Dresden. His recordings of Wagner’s Siegfried and Götterdämmerung with the Metropolitan Opera won Grammy awards.

Pre-concert Chamber Music Performance

Pre-concert Chamber Music Performance

Program:Baermann / Clarinet Quintet No. 3 E-flat Major Op. 23—2nd Mov.
(Formerly Attributed to Wagner / Adagio for Clarinet and Strings in D-flat Major)*
Brahms / Clarinet Quintet B-Minor Op. 115—3rd Mov.


Portrai of Artist
Kenji Matsumoto
Portrai of Artist
Toshihiro Takai
Portrai of Artist
Akiko Tanaka
Portrai of Artist
Hiroto Tobisawa
Portrai of Artist
Rei Tsujimoto
Portrai of Artist
Shinji Nishiyama*



Subscription Concerts 2023-2024
Program C

No. 1990 Subscription (Program C)

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NHK-FMNHK-FMNo. 1990 Subscription (Program C)

Friday, Sep 15, 2023 7:30PM - 9:10PM

Program: Wagner / Vlieger / The Ring, An Orchestral Adventure
*This concert will have a duration of 60 to 80 minutes without an interval.

Conductor:Fabio Luisi

Recorded:September 15, 2023 NHK Hall


*Repertoire, conductor, soloists and program order are subject to change without notice.
*Pre-school children are not allowed in the concert hall