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How Wagner Informed Russell Crowe's "Acting Technique"

Written By The Wagnerian on Tuesday, 28 April 2015 | 8:07:00 pm

At least we now know what is running through Crowe's mind
during all of those publicity shots
In an interview with "Yahoo Movies", Russell Crowe gives a film by film "insight" into how he prepares  himself for each role . No method acting here it would seem,. Although, we can suppose one would struggle to apply that school of acting technique to either the roles of a gladiator or a singing police inspector during the Paris uprising of 1832.

Turning to his "breakthrough", 1992 role in "Romper Stomper" he provides some interesting, if bewildering insights. For those that have not seen it, Romper Stomper follows the self destruction of a skinhead, neo-Nazi group in Melbourne. Think of it as a sort of "Before they were UKIP" documentary. drama. In this movie, Crowe plays "Hando" leader of said skinhead group.

And how did Crowe prepare for the role of a skinhead, neo-nazi thug? "...he remembers internalizing three different sounds simultaneously in his head: German composer Richard Wagner, soccer crowds, and plain white noise". He does not elaborate, whether he means the voice of Wagner through his writings,  Richard Burton's movie version or alternatively Wagner's music.

Says Crowe, “I look back at it now and I go, 'What the hell was I trying to achieve with that? But I had to fight through all that noise, so it kind of gave [him] a strange edge.”

So now we find that Wagner can be blamed not only for: the rise of the Nazis, the fall of civilization, the rise of civilisation, atheism, monotheism, mass genocide, communism, capitalism, the decline of classical music, the saving of classical music, social moral degeneracy, sexual freedom - among many other things -  but "ham acting". Will the horror ever end? Well, one assumes they cannot blame Wagner for Crowe's terrible singing in Les Misérables. Can they?

The full interview video can be found below.
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The Ring Cycle Tarot

Written By The Wagnerian on Sunday, 5 April 2015 | 4:35:00 am

There has, of course, been, what seems, an endless number of differingly themed tarot decks. It would be easy to blame the the occult revival of the  Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
 for this, but only a quick glance at the history of the tarot deck (or should that be decks?) would show that it has always been so. In more recent times, there have been many such decks based on "popular" culture - both officially and unofficially.  For example The Star Wars Tarot and at least two Lord Of The Rings themed tarot decks. It may come as some surprise then, given the esoteric interpretations given to the Ring, at least since the early days of the Theosophical Society, that there has, until now, been no Ring cycle themed tarot deck.  

Well, Allegra Printz, a graduate of The Boston Museum School of Fine Arts,  a professional artist, classical music lover, tarot enthusiast, and student of metaphysics, is about to to correct this oversight. His deck, and explanatory book,  based upon Rackham’s Ring illustrations will be released internationally in May this year. What follows below is the publishers description. 


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New Issue Of The Wagner Journal Published

March 2015 issue (vol.9, no.1) of The Wagner Journal, which contains the following articles:

• 'Where's the Drama?': Personal Reflections on the Intersection of Music and Theatre in Wagner Performance by David Breckbill
• Knappe oder Ritter? A study of Gurnemanz by Peter Quantrill
• Wagner and Science: Twilight of the Gods Across the Multiverse by Mark B. Chadwick
• The Rosebush Pictures of Wagner's Daughter Isolde by Dagny R. Beidler

plus reviews of:
Tristan und Isolde at Covent Garden
Lohengrin in Zurich and Amsterdam
Das Rheingold in British Columbia
Parsifal in Tokyo

CD recordings of a complete Wagner cycle conducted by Marek Janowski and the 1961 Bayreuth Tannhäuser conducted by Wolfgang Sawallisch, starring Wolfgang Windgassen, Victoria de los Angeles, Grace Bumbry and Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau

Hilan Warshaw's film Wagner's Jews on DVD
new books on Wagner and film by David Huckvale and Kevin C. Karnes, Wagner's Visions by Katherine R. Syer, The Cambridge Wagner Encyclopedia, ed. Nicholas Vazsonyi, a new translation of Wagner's essay Beethoven by Roger Allen, and Chris Walton's Lies and Epiphanies: Composers and Their Inspiration from Wagner to Berg, reviewed by David Matthews

Individual copies of, and annual subscriptions to, The Wagner Journal are available in both printed and electronic form. Individual articles and reviews are also available in electronic form. Full details on www.thewagnerjournal.co.uk.
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