Richard Wagner in Bayreuth  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Richard Wagner in Bayreuth (1909) by Friedrich Nietzsche, translated by Anthony M. Ludovici [1]

"Richard Wagner in Bayreuth", 1876 (that is, after a gap of two years from the previous essay) investigates the music, drama and personality of Richard Wagner—less flatteringly than Nietzsche's friendship with his subject might suggest. The original draft was in fact more critical than the final version. Nietzsche considered not publishing it because of his changing attitudes to Wagner and his art. He was persuaded to redraft the article by his friend, the enthusiastic Wagnerian Peter Gast who helped him prepare a less contentious version. Shortly after its publication, Nietzsche visited Bayreuth for the opening of the Bayreuth Festival. The essay was well received by Wagner and his circle. However the event during the Festival confirmed Nietzsche's growing misgivings. The essay thus foreshadows the philosopher's imminent split with Wagner and his ideas.

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