Sunday, August 23, 2009

My Ring Cycle is Over...Now What?

As Cycle II comes to a close, we continue our run of guest bloggers. All opinions expressed in our guest posts are those of the author and not necessarily those of Seattle Opera. Please welcome back Lynn Rosen and read on!

Oy! Woe and bummer! The final curtain has come down on the fourth and last opera of Seattle Opera’s Ring cycle. Götterdämmerung. Sounds like a swear word expressing a sentiment of grief over the end of a week-long love affair with the festival, the celebration, the social connections, the incredible professional spectacle.

Now what on earth do we do with our selves? When will we ever see our seatmates with whom we so intimately sat in the dark for so many hours all week through emotional roller coasters, elbow and knee nudges, sneezes, coughs, exchanged nods, opinions and dropped glasses? We shared so much and now where oh where is our opera tribe of the second tier, aisle Q, row K?

During an intermission, I had a chance to chat with Cassidy Quinn, Seattle Opera’s Ring cycle first-timer. She was set up one floor down on the first tier with a camera crew inviting people to join her. Everyone was having fun speaking with her. Cassidy said she was kind of surprised she was enjoying the opera so much. She loved the romance and the spectacle and especially the energy of the large cast onstage during this final production. We agreed that lots of other first-timers had the same kind of enjoyable surprises in their futures when they came to the opera. She looked happy and gorgeous, by the way.

The fourth-and-final opera in the cycle certainly delivered. Whew! Did it ever. If any details had been missed in the previous three performances, the three Norns in the opening scene laid it all out again. They sort of hit the “refresh” button for everybody just to get them ready for the next adventure in preparation for The Big Finish.

We all rather ignored a few minor computer glitches, which gave some folks a lot to chitchat about, but instead relished the remarkable performances and understood that it was a privilege to just be there.

I said fond farewells to many of my section/tier/tribal-member opera-goers: the lovely woman, another first-time Ringer from Argentina a few rows in front of us who wore a different and elegant kimono every evening; the stylish small woman and her friends who, every performance, came dressed as if they were kings and queens in their best finery; the elegant, beautiful and knowledgeable woman who impeccably wore an authentic Sound-of-Music costume to every performance. We all agreed we each had the best sightlines, the best acoustics, and the best seatmates. We also agreed that there just is no bad seat in the house at Seattle Opera’s Ring cycle.

Now. Can we just begin the whole thing all over again?


Lynn Rosen, Emmy-award winning broadcaster, is a member of the international American Theatre Critics Association, journalist, travel writer and photographer.


  1. Hallo, Lynn!
    A great summary of a great "gesamtkunstwerkproduction";
    makes me sorry I missed this year's edition after standing for every performance in 2005 and sitting (also in 2nd Tier) for the 2001 edition.
    If you wanted further contact with your 2nd Tier colleagues, why didn't you exchange phone numbers?
    Win H.

  2. And it IS starting all over again tomorrow night - I can hardly wait!!

  3. I am still suffering from Ring withdrawal. I will be glued to the radio Saturday night for another fix.

    Oh, I wish I had tickets for every cycle!