Monday, 28 January 2008
Parsifal + an unfaithful conductor + Seth, the Egyptian chaos-god =
This is in short a strange novel of a breath and scope rarely published by Danish writers, and also a very entertaining read, which have left me with much to reflect on.
I wouldn´t presume to fully understand the messages in this work, since they come in several layers, but in short it is the story of the internationally renowned German conductor Martin Seeber, preparing to conduct Parsifal in a small German opera house. Incidentally, the Egyptian chaos-God Seth, having survived since ancient times, lives on a castle nearby and takes interest in Martin. Martin, on the other hand, is fascinated by the liberal life-style advocated by Seth, and embarks upon an affair with one of Seth´s followers, Sophie.
At the same time, the reborn Egyptian God Horus (Seth´s eternal adversary) is the center of a British cult, with the sole purpose to defeat Seth. The cult members eventually turn up close to Seth´s castle in search for an ancient weapon (surprise: a spear!) needed to defeat Seth. At the same time, the premiere of Parsifal draws closer, and myth and reality gets increasingly intertwined..not to be revealed here, how it all ends.
Is it just about a man being unfaithful to his wife? Or rather about guilt and atonement? Or is it an in-depth analysis of Parsifal with human applications? Probably a mixture of all of the above. In summary, it is a highly entertaining read, not for purists and kept in a clear language, which definitely deserves an English translation. A fascinating and highly unlikely mixture of Richard Wagner, Egyptian mythology and general human emotions. Not to be missed for those interested in Richard Wagner related issues (who are able to read Danish, as well!).
Translated excerpts from the novel may be read in English here.
Homepage of the author here.