A Brand New ‘Ring’ in a Brand New Space

By ANTHONY TOMMASINI
Published: September 14, 2006

TORONTO, Sept. 13 — When the conductor Richard Bradshaw, who has been general director of the Canadian Opera Company since 1998, appeared in the pit here at the company’s impressive new home on Tuesday night to conduct the premiere of a new production of Wagner’s “Rheingold,” the audience gave him a prolonged standing ovation before he conducted a note.

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Laura Whalen, left, Allyson McHardy and Krisztina Szabo stand over a sleeping Wotan in the Canadian Opera Company’s “Rheingold.”
Donald Weber for The New York Times

The opening-night audience at the Four Seasons Center for the Performing Arts in Toronto, new home of the Canadian Opera Company.

It was the British-born Mr. Bradshaw’s vision and tenacity during nearly 20 years with the company that turned the fantasy of a new house into the $150 million reality occupying an entire block of downtown Toronto, the Four Seasons Center for the Performing Arts. Toronto opera lovers are clearly excited by the center, which opened in June with a series of special concerts and public events. Tuesday night’s “Rheingold” — the first evening in the Canadian Opera Company’s first complete presentation of Wagner’s “Ring,” which concludes on Sunday — commenced this adventurous company’s inaugural season in its new home. This is actually the first complete “Ring” production in Canadian history

Das Rheingold – Canadian Opera Company – Critic’s Notebook – New York Times.

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