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Wagner's Parsifal$
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William Kinderman

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780195366921

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195366921.001.0001

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The Poem: Its Background and Evolution

The Poem: Its Background and Evolution

(p.46) (p.47) Chapter 1 The Poem: Its Background and Evolution
Wagner's Parsifal

William Kinderman

Oxford University Press

The genesis of Wagner’s Parsifal drama has deep roots, as is shown by its affinities with his first opera Die Feen, based on Gozzi’s play La donna serpente. Other sources of inspiration included an 1838 treatise by C.T.L. Lucas, and Gluck’s Armide. Wagner’s Lohengrin offered a springboard for Parsifal, and the composer weighed the possibility of introducing Parzival into the last act of Tristan und Isolde. By the time of his first prose draft in 1865, Kundry had become a complex compound being with certain sphinx-like traits, but only in the last stages of devising the text did Wagner settle on the names of some major characters.

Keywords:   Carlo Gozzi, Die Feen, C.T.L. Lucas, Christoph Willibald Gluck, Armide, Lohengrin, Parzival, Tristan und Isolde, Kundry, Sphinx

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