Religion: Triumphant Sieglinde

The season at New York's Metropolitan Opera has been improving steadily. The height is its presentation of Wagner's four-opera masterpiece, Der Ring des Nibelungen, opera's most ambitious undertaking. All performances have been sold out, but the most clamorous demand has been for the ones in which Birgit Nilsson, the only great Wagnerian soprano today, sings Brunnhilde. Then a couple of weeks ago, people with tickets to other performances won a bonus. When Leonie Rysanek, scheduled to sing Sieglinde in Die Walkure, got sick, Met General Manager Schuyler Chapin approached Nilsson, who was free...

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