Berlin is playing Wagner for laughs

Berlin is playing Wagner for laughs


norman lebrecht

November 29, 2022

Herbert Fritsch’s new Flying Dutchman at the Komische Oper Berlin has them rolling in the aisles.

The veteran German direcrtor has modelled his staging on Pirates of the Caribbean with Günter Papendell in the Jonny Depp role, morphing into scenes from a 1920s Berlin cabaret.

Sounds like fun. Revew here.

Next at the Komische: Parsifal?


press photo: Monika Rittershaus/Komische Oper


  • Save the MET says:

    Next, they can do Oscar Straus’s “Die Lustigen Niebelung”.

  • Petros Linardos says:

    A Till Eulenspiegel ballet with Till looking like Boris Johnson.

    As for their current Dutchman: Nein, danke.

  • Micaelo Cassetti says:

    I never knew Wagner wrote “Friggin’ in the riggin’.”

  • RW2013 says:

    Fritsch has his directing style and is sticking to it, sometimes suits (Intermezzo in Basel), sometimes not…

  • harry Collier says:

    As a lifelong believer in listening to an opera with my eyes firmly closed, I cannot comment on this. For me, opera is music and singing. Forget about stage antics (and, for 18th century operas, forget about “the plot”.

  • Alan Glick says:

    Some time ago on this website in an article about nonsensical directors at Bayreuth I jokingly commented that the next production of Parsifal would probably portray the principals as Johnny Depp, Carrot-top and Moms Mabley. I had no idea someone would take my words seriously. Maybe I should keep my witticisms to myself before they cause more damage, or should I sue for infringement?

  • Fritz Grantler says:

    Opera productions in Germany and Austria are a joke …..These productions are cheap…a few panels….”costumes” from the Salvation Army…wheelchairs and shopping carts…the chorus holding up placards….and out-of-shape singers and chorus members in their underwear….The producers write long “explanations’ of their `concept`…Yea – this garbage is a “con”…One does not need lectures from these overpaid leftist propagandists….It is a waste of money and time that is lost watching this Dreck ….