Maazel at the Met, Br¸nnhilde in a Bind

By ANTHONY TOMMASINI [NY Times, 9 January 2008]
As soon as Lorin Maazel appeared in the pit at the Metropolitan Opera on Monday night to conduct the seasonís first performance of Wagnerís ìWalk¸re,î he received a sustained ovation from the audience. At 77, after an inexplicable 45-year absence, Mr. Maazel has finally returned to the Met. Facing high expectations, he delivered, conducting a lucidly textured, rhythmically incisive and strongly conceived account of this touchstone opera and winning what looked to be very respectful applause from the orchestra musicians when he took a solo curtain call at the end of the five-hour evening.