Wagner: Das Rheingold [Der Ring des Nibelungen: I]

Opera 100

Here we write a 100-word précis of numerous opera plots. This is an ongoing and serendipitous series, the idea being to present the storyline in an instant.

Wagner: Das Rheingold [Der Ring des Nibelungen: I]

by: Alexander Campbell

Taunted by the Rhinemaidens the Nibelung Alberich forswears love and snatches their gold. He forges the ring of power and forces his brother Mime to make the transforming Tarnhelm. Wotan, chief god, and Loge, the fire-god, trick and capture Alberich, stealing his treasures to pay giants Fasolt and Fafner for building the fortress Valhalla. As Wotan wrests the ring from him, Alberich curses it. Earth-goddess Erda advises Wotan to relinquish it, which he does as part-ransom of goddess Freia from the giants. Grabbing it, Fasolt is murdered by Fafner. Shocked, the gods enter Valhalla as the Rhinemaidens bemoan their loss.

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