Today is Richard Wagner’s 200th birthday.
From Lohengrin — my favorite Wagner opera — the Prelude to Act I and “Elsa’s Procession to the Cathedral”. Wagner’s reputation is often one of bombast and thick, dense orchestration. This music is as delicate as anything.
The overture to Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg. Wagner’s other main reputation is one of unrelenting seriousness — but this is as sunny as anything you’ll hear by anyone else.
The Prelude and Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde. The emotional payoff here is one of the most staggering I know in all of music, anywhere, in any genre.
It's probably not PC to love the Nazi's favorite pop star, but i can't help it. I love Wagner.