La tétralogie de 4 sous

"I can't listen to that much Wagner. I start getting the urge to conquer Poland" Woody Allen

Wagner's Ring is a monumental work which includes 4 operas totalling 16 hours of music: The Rhinegold, The Valkyries, Siegfried and The Twilight of the Gods. Wagner was inspired by ancient Scandanvian legends in the creation of his epic. In their version, the Grooms distil the original into 90 minutes, during which we see the magic golden ring change hands eleven times. The opera's very contemporary moral is that it is impossible to have both love and money. And at the end, in keeping with this message, everything does indeed fall apart.

With The Threepenny Ring, Les Grooms appeal to confirmed Wagner-lovers as well as to the uninitiated. The arrangements, for eight brass instruments, percussion, and three singers, respect the original music while adding some comic touches. We never lose the plot, despite the story's complexity; the company links the various operas in a playful way, combining action and dialogue so as to keep us in touch with unfolding events.

The story is played out under a rudimentary tent structure, which represents a grotto. The audience (a maximum of 350 people) sits on carpets or on stools in amongst the musicians and singers.

Unlike most opera, we are not on the outside looking in ; we are literally at the heart of the action.

About the music :
Les Grooms give us a new kind of Ring, no longer the exclusive property of 'in-the-know' Wagnerians. Wagner's highly sophisticated harmonic language, with its constant modulations, makes it possible to cut and edit the music into something new. It isn't a matter of simply putting together a selection of extracts, but of making an original reconstruction, a condensation of Richard Wagner. And this Ring is spiced up with oriental scales and klezmer rhythms, subtle raspberries blown at the well-known anti-Semitic tendencies of our brilliant composer.

Arrangements : Antoine Rosset
Directed by : Hervée de Lafond et Jacques Livchine
Set : Claude Acquart
Puppets : Gilbert Meyer
Lights : Zizou

With the support of Barbican International Theatre Event, PCT Dommelhof, Festival Juste pour rire, Festival Chalon dans la rue, SAN de Saint-Quentin en Yvelines, Le Prisme, Lieux Publics, Théâtre de l'Unité, Le Moulin Fondu, Festival L'humour des notes. DRAC Ile de France, DMDTS, ADAMI, SPEDIDAM.