The highly-regarded music director of Bavarian State Opera has been telling German media that Bayreuth has demanded too much from him these past three years.
‘In a Bayreuth season I conduct 14 performances,’ he recounts – three complete Ring cycles, plus extras, four to six hours a night. ‘The next morning, every muscle hurts.’
He can’t remember what it’s like to take a summer holiday. July and August are taken up by Bayreuth. Two weeks into September the new season starts in Munich.
‘Two weeks is not long enough to recover. If Bayreuth had given me just one opera, I might have lasted five years.’