The Kirov’s ‘Parsifal’: Russo-Profundo

parsifal_fantin_small.jpgBy Joe Banno [Washington Post, 23 February 2006]
If “Die Meistersinger” is the Wagner opera for non-Wagnerians, “Parsifal” is the one for true believers. Uninitiated opera-goers can find “Parsifal’s” daunting length and glacial pace, its half-digested Buddhism and quasi-Christian sanctimony a form of unspeakable torture. But those under the composer’s spell understand the work’s hypnotic pull and cathartic power — not to mention its sheer gorgeousness.