skip navigation | text only | accessibility | site map

Richard Wagner

Richard Wagner was born in Leipzig, Germany on May 22, 1813. The German operatic composer was the most important inspirational figure in 19th century music and cultural history for both his criticism and polemical writing. Wagner's musical training was left to chance until he was 18, when he studied with Theodor Weinlig in Leipzig for a year. He began his career in 1833 as choral director in Wurzburg and composed his early works that imitated German romantic compositions.In 1839 Wagner set off for Paris where he hoped to make his fortune.


Video and Audio

The Story of "The Ring": The Valkyrie

In the Ring's second chapter, the offspring of Wotan, king of the gods, boldly test his will. Siegmund finds himself attracted to his sister Sieglinde, while Brünnhilde is torn between obeying orders and preventing Siegmund's demise.

The Story of "The Ring": Siegfried

The third opera in the Ring Cycle is a coming-of-age story at heart. Raised in the wilderness, Wotan's grandchild Siegfried sets out to escape his wicked caretaker, slay a fearsome dragon, and rescue the beautiful Brünnhilde.

The Story of "The Ring": Rhinegold

The epic story of the Ring begins on the banks of the Rhine, where three maidens guard the river's magical gold. If forged into a ring, this sacred treasure gives its bearer unimaginable abilities--but at the cost of renouncing love forever.

+ Show All Videos



Additional Resources