Watch: Gerald Finley on Parsifal
Leading baritone discusses his role as Amfortas in Stephen Langridge’s new Royal Opera production.
Stephen Langridge’s new production of Wagner’s powerful psychodrama Parsifal opens on 30 November. The production features a star-studded cast, including Gerald Finley, Simon O’Neill, René Pape and Angela Denoke.
Gerald will sing the role of Amfortas, a troubled king condemned to suffer for the sin of being seduced.
‘The role encompasses lots of wonderful, complicated, moral issues that Wagner wanted to explore’, says Gerald. ‘Amfortas’s story is a metaphor for the challenges of society: if you have failed in an honourable position, how do you get redemption from those who are less than you?’
Parsifal had its premiere at Bayreuth in 1882. Wagner’s final great masterpiece, it is an epic and transcendental work that explores sensual temptation and spiritual redemption.
‘For me, Parsifal is about being thrilled by the music and the idea of people striving. I want people to feel moved and astonished that this beautiful music and slightly prosaic story touches them.’
Gerald made his main-stage debut in Covent Garden as a Flemish Deputy in Don Carlo in 1989. This Season, in addition to Amfortas, he will sing the role of Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro and will make his 100th performance with The Royal Opera.
Parsifal is staged with generous philanthropic support from The Metherell Family, Roland & Sophie Rudd, Dr and Mrs Michael West, Marina Hobson MBE, Ian and Helen Andrews, Peter and Fiona Espenhahn, Annie Frankel, Malcolm Herring, Dr L Mikheev and N Mikheev, Lindsay and Sarah Tomlinson, The Wagner Circle and The Parsifal Production Syndicate and generously supported in memory of Simon Tullah.