Seeing “Tannhauser” at the Lyric Opera

Seeing “Tannhauser” at the Lyric Opera

Hi everyone! Hope you are all staying warm in this freezing weather. Every time I go outside I feel my whole face freezing and when I am breathing on my scarf wrapped around my neck, I can see actual icicles forming. It is insane! But of course, I am braving the weather and so should you! Don’t let a little cold make you not explore Chicago. This past Sunday, I decided to head out of my warm apartment and go to the Lyric Opera to see Tannhauser, a German opera.

I love going to the opera! While it is not for everyone, the beautiful singing just mesmerizes me and the story plots, costumes, set designs, and actors/actresses are just wonderful. However, if you are a first timer to the opera, I would not recommend seeing Tannhauser. It is a four and a half hour long opera which is quite a long time for people to sit through. It is also a tragic and depressive opera which is not everyone’s cup of tea. If you are a first timer, see something shorter and lighter, like the Magic Flute or a Shakespearean opera.

At the opera, I am pretty sure that my friend and I were the youngest ones there. The opera can be quite pricey, so not a lot of young people go. Since it was an older crowd, and it was a long opera, many people fell asleep! Which is kind of typical in long operas, but not me. It was way to enthralling for me to fall asleep. The general plot line is that a man is in Hell living with Venus who has enticed him away from his true love on earth. He begins to feel restless and wants to leave Venus to get back to earth. She lets him go, but unwillingly. Once returned, the man sees his love and wants her back, but she is unsure because he already left her once and she does not trust him. Many other men are vying for her attention, so a sing-off is held to see who she will choose. The man is still under Venus’s spell, so he sings of lustful love and everyone is disgusted. He is commanded to go to Rome to have his sins wiped clean. He goes, but is not forgiven and his love dies because she is distraught over the outcome. The man says that the pope will not forgive him unless his staff bears leaves. It miraculously does so at the end of the opera, but it is too late for the man because his love has died. The whole opera was in German so you have to read a prompter that is in English to tell you what is being sung.

It is a tragic opera, but a beautiful one. The Lyric offers student discounts for any student in Chicago, including Loyola Ramblers! If you go to their website and register as a student for free, you will receive emails saying when you can go to discounted operas. Usually the tickets are only around 20 dollars or so! It is a nice incentive to go out and get cultured in Chicago!


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