"Andrew Porter's utterly natural, often poetic, faithfully rendered English text should be a revelation...The immediacy of instant comprehension gives the entire drama an added dimension."-The New York Times
's vast Der Ring des Nibelungen cycle comprises four full-length operas (Das Rheingold, Die Walkure, Siegfried and Gotterdammerung) and is arguably the most extraordinary achievement in the history of opera. His own libretto to the operas, translated by Andrew Porter, is an intricate system of metric patterns, imaginative metaphors and alliteration, combining to produce the music in text.
Wagner studied harmony, piano, and violin, and religiously copied Beethoven's symphonies for personal study. He was banned from Germany, and fled to Switzerland. He was allowed to return in 1861, but fled to Vienna to avoid imprisoment for debt.