My Life with Wagner by

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Mr Thielemann will be happy in Bayreuth, where Richard Wagner—“The Master”—is beyond criticism. His book is an act of homage, part revealing autobiography (“Wagner confronted me with myself…not always [an] undiluted pleasure”) and part informative guide to the Wagner oeuvre...
-The Economist

Synopsis

One of today's most outstanding conductors, Christian Thielemann, composes a brilliant account of the great—and controversial—Richard Wagner.


Over a distinguished career conducting some of the world's finest orchestras, Christian Thielemann has earned a reputation as the leading modern interpreter of Richard Wagner.

My Life with Wagner chronicles his ardent personal and professional engagement with the great composer, whose work has shaped his thinking and feeling from early childhood. Thielemann retraces his journey around the world with Wagner—from Berlin to Bayreuth via Venice, Hamburg, and Chicago—and combines his analysis with revealing insights drawn from his many years of experience as a Wagner conductor.


Thielemann discusses each of Wagner's operas in turn, and his appraisal is illuminated by a deep affinity for the music, an intimate knowledge of the scores, and the inside perspective of a world-class practitioner. And yet for all the adulation Wagner's art inspires, Thielemann does not shy away from unpalatable truths about the man himself, explaining why today Wagner is venerated and reviled in equal measure.My Life with Wagner is a richly rewarding read for admirers of a composer who continues to fascinate long after his death.

 

About the Author

Christian Thielemann was born in 1959. In 1988 he became Germany's youngest general music director with his appointment at Nuremberg, before returning to the Deutsche Oper in his hometown of Berlin in 1997. More recently he led the Munich Philharmonic from 2004 to 2011. In addition to his current position in Dresden, Thielemann was appointed artistic director of the Salzburg Easter Festival in 2013. His work has taken him to many of the finest opera houses around the globe and he is a regular guest of world-class orchestras such as the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonics.In 2000 he made his critically lauded debut at the Bayreuth Festival, to which he has returned year after year. He was appointed music director in July 2015.
 
Published May 3, 2016 by Pegasus Books. 263 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Arts & Photography, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for My Life with Wagner
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

Kirkus

Above average
on Feb 04 2016

Thielemann’s revelations about the complexities of conducting are likely to enhance any music lover’s listening experiences.

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Washington Times

Above average
Reviewed by Aram Bakshian Jr. on Dec 11 2016

In this brief but discursive book, Mr. Thielemann is at his best when he sets aside history, politics, contemporary gossip and high theory and speaks to us as a seasoned professional musician and an inspired artisan...

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The Economist

Above average
on Aug 15 2015

Mr Thielemann will be happy in Bayreuth, where Richard Wagner—“The Master”—is beyond criticism. His book is an act of homage, part revealing autobiography (“Wagner confronted me with myself…not always [an] undiluted pleasure”) and part informative guide to the Wagner oeuvre...

Read Full Review of My Life with Wagner | See more reviews from The Economist
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