Die Meistersinger von Nu..rnberg (The Mastersingers of Nuremberg): English National Opera Guide 19 (Oper Guides)

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English National Opera Guides are ideal companions to the opera. They provide stimulating introductory articles together with the complete text of each opera in English and the original. This opera has been described as "the longest single smile in the German language". But Roland Matthews indicates that violence is not far beneath the surface of this portrait of medieval Nuremberg. Arnold Whittall's analysis gives a bird's-eye view of the complexity of the score. Timothy McFarland explores the significance of the choice of subject: that nostalgia for a pre-industrial community, which was a symptom of the German nationalist movement. The long text has many subtleties which opera audiences can hardly appreciate without reading it, and the musical themes are numbered to indicate where they occur.