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Opera meets politics in L.A. dust-up over Wagner


In the latest controversy over the operas of Richard Wagner , the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has voted to support a production of the composer’s “Ring,” but said that his anti-Jewish views would not be glossed over.wagner-opera

The question over the performance by the L.A. Opera, scheduled for next year in conjunction with a related festival, generated heated debate among the supervisors, who govern an area with a population of more than 10 million residents.

Supervisor Michael Antonovich argued it was “impossible” to separate Wagner the man from his music and that his ”music and racist writings inspired and then became the de facto soundtrack for the Holocaust.”

Stephen Rountree, chief operating officer of the L.A. Opera, countered that “the festival is not about Richard Wagner; it is about music and art in L.A.”