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WAGNER'S one Comic Opera had been taking shape in his mind for something like twenty years before he settled down in earnest to compose it. The original scheme must have undergone many changes during that long period, from the first sketches made in 1854, but it seems to be clear that the composer's first in- . tent ion was to make it in some sort a burlesque of Tannhäuser and of the song contest which is its central point.
The old Mastersingers rook their art so seriously that their meetings were usually held in church, and their solemnity, as well as the rather stem formality of their rules of song, is very happily hit off in Wagner's big theme with which his opera opens. Its blend of stately pomp with a schoolmasterly air, is unmistakable.
Another, scarcely less well-known episode, is the Apprentices' dance, which is simply the Masters' tune with the time doubled, forming a merry burlesque of its dignity.


Barrington Hooper

5GB Daventry (Experimental)

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This data is drawn from the Radio Times magazine between 1923 and 2009. It shows what was scheduled to be broadcast, meaning it was subject to change and may not be accurate. More