[NOTE: This entry has been edited as of 3:47 PM Eastern on 27 Dec to restore a one-word but important qualifying parenthetical and to clean up some overblown language.]
The Guardian has posted until 6 January 2013 videos of the 2007 revival of Glyndebourne's 2003 Nikolaus Lehnhoff über-minimalist staging of Wagner's Tristan und Isolde (Act I, Act II, Act III), a staging that's an object lesson in just how powerful a Wagner music-drama can be when the opera director stays out of Wagner's way by doing — and doing only — what he ought to be doing: viz., discovering, to the utmost capacity of his gift, the most vivid and compelling way to realize onstage the full sense and spirit of the opera creator's concept and vision as made manifest in the score (music, text, and stage directions), as we've put it previously. This holds true even when the resulting staging turns out first-rate but is imperfectly realized and dotted here and there with (mostly) small but outright conceptual blunders as it is in this case. Of course, it doesn't hurt matters in this case that the cast is also first-rate, both as singers and as actors, and that the performance of one of that cast, Nina Stemme as Isolde, is the equal of every iconic performance known to us of that impossible role. On the other hand, it doesn't help much (and most especially in this music-drama) that the conductor, Jiří Bĕlohlávek, turns in a less than profound reading of the score; competent, conscientious, and lively as it may be. Negatives notwithstanding, all in all a thoroughly worthwhile and rewarding expenditure of some five hours of our time. We suspect it might prove to be for you as well.