Welcome to the Ether Game Weekly Podcast! We're laying down a steady beat this week, preparing a potpourri of percussive pieces in a show we're calling "Bang A Drum"! To get you started (or for those of you who just cannot wait for Tuesday nights), you can sharpen your skills with our podcast selection. Remember to keep your ears out for a portion of Tuesday night's Teaser selection. And don't forget to tune into the full show on Tuesday, March 21st at 8:00pm for a chance to win a prize!
Richard Wagner (1813–1883): DAS RHEINGOLD: End of Act II
Orchestra del Festival di Bayreuth; Clemens Krauss, conductor. Das Rheingold (Foyer)
In this opera scene, Wotan (the ruler of the gods) and his servant Loge are descending into the underground lair of the dwarf Alberich, in hopes that they can recover the gold that Alberich has stolen. They arrive to find that Alberich has taken the gold, converted it into a magical ring that's given him unlimited power, and has enslaved all of the other dwarves. To depict the toiling of the dwarves, Wagner created a chorus of 18 tuned anvils to be struck in rhythm. Anvils are not uncommon in the percussion battery. However, Wagner's anvils were all supposed to be tuned to the note F, which is rather difficult to achieve. Regular iron anvils don't seem to the do the trick, so percussionists have experimented with steel anvils, and even crafting custom aluminum tubing to get just the right sound.