Germany's most famous opera festival opens in Bayreuth amid heat wave

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-25 23:07:24|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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BERLIN, July 25 (Xinhua) -- Germany's most famous opera festival, the Richard Wagner Festival, opened in tropical temperatures in the Bavarian city of Bayreuth on Thursday.

In temperatures of 39 degrees Celsius, the 108th Bayreuth Festival opened with a new production of Wagner's opera Tannhaeuser.

The city of Bayreuth had planted 15,000 summer flowers in the festival park, but the heat had been a challenge, according to Robert Pfeifer, head of the Bayreuth municipal garden office.

"The prolonged drought has challenged us very much," Pfeifer told the Bavarian public broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk.

On the red carpet at the premiere, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other German politicians such as Monika Gruetters (culture), Jens Spahn (health) and Dorothee Baer (digitization) were expected as well as the leader of the Bavarian CSU, Markus Soeder.

Over the next five weeks, guests from all over the world will be coming to Bayreuth to listen to one of the 32 performances of Richard Wagner's operas.

According to the Bayreuth Festival's costume director, 3,000 meters of fabric had been processed for the performances, while the choir alone required 600 costumes.

"We have just mastered one of the numerically largest costume fittings in the history of the Bayreuth Festival," Buelk told Bayerischer Rundfunk.

One more highlight would be happening at the festival in 2021, when a female conductor would be performing for the first time in the history of the Bayreuth Festival, according to festival director Katharina Wagner.

The first Bayreuth Festival took place in August 1876 and is dedicated to the operas of the German composer Richard Wagner.