Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. Art/Architecture tours, Oak Park (Frank Lloyd Wright), highlights of The Loop, gourmet cuisine and wine. Peninsula Hotel.
“Nothing short of a triumph on all fronts, intelligently conceived by the creative team, brilliantly executed by a top-flight international cast.”
– The Chicago Tribune
Join us for and extraordinary story told over the journey of four operas.
Together, they comprise Wagner’s magnificent Ring cycle, one of the greatest musical achievements in Western culture and an immersive operatic adventure that every opera lover should experience.
Lyric’s new Ring, conducted by music director Sir Andrew Davis and directed by David Pountney, has been widely praised internationally, and we will take only 18 lucky participants to experience this operatic tour de force in Spring 2020.
We have top-category orchestra seats, the best seats of any group to attend, as we were the first in line for tickets. Any lectures and special Ring events that coincide with our attendance will be included.
We will stay for 7 nights in Deluxe rooms at The Peninsula Chicago, the five-star hotel on the Magnificent Mile that brought traditional Asian service to a city already renowned for the warmth of its hospitality. The Peninsula has received a Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star rating each year since its opening, and was named the #1 hotel in Chicago and the #2 hotel in the USA in 2018 by U.S. News and World Report.
In addition to full breakfast each day and 6 additional exquisite meals, we will enjoy private art and architecture tours around the city, with a special focus on the work of Frank Lloyd Wright.
Tanja Ariane Baumgartner
Sir Andrew Davis
ORIGINAL SET DESIGNER
Robert Innes Hopkins
SUNDAY, APRIL 19
Arrival and check-in at the Peninsula Hotel Chicago.
19.00 Gather in the hotel lobby for introductions and a Welcome Dinner in the elegant lobby of the hotel.
MONDAY, APRIL 20
10.00 Gather in the lobby and depart on a coach and walking tour of Chicago with our superb guide, Larry Simon.
12.30 Return to the hotel. Lunch is at leisure.
16.45 Depart by private coach to Bellemore for a special dinner prior to the first performance of the Ring: Das Rheingold. 19.30 curtain.
TUESDAY, APRIL 21
11.15 After a leisurely morning we make our way to Lyric Opera and enjoy a one-hour recital of music related to and inspired by Wagner and the Ring cycle. Performed by singers from Lyric’s Ryan Opera Center, the program will offer a range of selections that will be revealing and entertaining. Noon start.
14.30 Following a break for lunch at leisure, we return for discussion, led by noted philosopher, author, and University of Chicago Law and Ethics professor Martha Nussbaum, about Wagner, philosophy, and how the thinking of the time shaped the Ring cycle.
15.30 Return to the hotel.
16.30 Gather and transfer to Lyric Opera for Die Walküre. 18.00 curtain. We will dine at the opera house pre-curtain and during the interval.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 22
13.15 After a leisurely morning and lunch at leisure, we make our way to Lyric Opera where music director and conductor of The Ring, Sir Andrew Davis, joins select cast members for a discussion and Q&A. 14.00 start.
15.30 Return to the hotel.
17.00 Early dinner is included at Proxi before Lyric Opera and Second City join forces to celebrate everyone’s favourite four-day, fifteen-hour opera. Longer! Louder! Wagner! The Second City Wagner Companion brings us to 1848 Germany where Wagner first began work on the Ring, to modern-day Bayreuth, home of Wagner’s personally-designed opera house, and hilariously illustrates the lasting effects of his masterpiece and the headaches an opera company might encounter trying to mount this behemoth. Note: Show may contain inaccurate German accents. 19.00 start.
THURSDAY, APRIL 23
09.15 Today we enjoy a backstage tour at Lyric Opera, and learn about the magic that brings the Ring cycle to life. 10am start.
12.00 Following the tour, we enjoy a champagne toast while exploring the set of Siegfried.
13.00 Return to the hotel, where lunch and the afternoon are at leisure.
16.15 Transfer by private coach to Lyric Opera for Siegfried. 18.00 curtain. We will dine at the opera house pre-curtain and during the interval.
FRIDAY, APRIL 24
09.30 Gather in the lobby and meet our guide, Larry Simon, for a tour to Oak Park and neighbouring River Forest to view some of Frank Lloyd Wright’s finest work (Winslow House, Roberts House, Unity Temple).
17.00 Tonight we dine at Acanto prior to a concert by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Riccardo Muti presents two groundbreaking pieces by the first African Americans to have symphonic works performed by major orchestras. William Grant Still’s Mother and Child is a touching work based on a painting by Sargent Johnson. Florence Price’s expressive Third Symphony gives a powerful voice to the African American experience. Julia Fischer brings her “burnished and splendid tone” (The Daily Telegraph) to Brahms’ lyrical Violin Concerto.
SATURDAY, APRIL 25
Enjoy the final day in Chicago at leisure.
16.00 Transfer to Lyric Opera one last time for our final performance of the The Ring: Götterdämmerung. 17.30 curtain. Farewell Dinner is included pre-curtain and during the interval.
SUNDAY, APRIL 26
Airport transfers are included, and will be advised on site.