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Facing Digital Realities: Where Media Do Not Mix

  • David Trippett


Wagner’s vaunted model of artistic synthesis persists in scholarly assessments of his work. But at its centre, the composer argued that the media of voice and orchestra do not mix: they retain their identities as separate channels of sound that can neither duplicate nor substitute for one another. Taking as a starting point Wagner’s claims for the non-adaptability of media, this article addresses the adaptation of Wagner’s music to the modern digital technologies of HD cinema and video game. Drawing on a wide circle of writers, from Schiller and Žižek to Bakhtin, Augé, Baudrillard and second-generation media theorists, it interrogates the concept of ‘reality’ within live acoustic performance, both historically, as a discursive concept, and technologically, via the sensory realism of digital simulcasting and telepresence. The philosophical opposition of appearance and reality fails when reality is defined by the intimate simulation of a sensory event as it is registered on the body. And by contrasting the traditions of high fidelity in (classical) sound recording with that of rendering sound in cinema, I suggest ways in which unmixable media appear to have an afterlife in modern technologies. This raises questions – in a post-Benjamin, post-McLuhan context – about our definition of ‘liveness’, the concept of authenticity within mediatised and acoustic sounds, and our vulnerability to the technological effects of media.

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I am most grateful to Justin Williams for offering thoughts on an earlier version of this article.



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1 Ong, Walter, Orality and Literacy: The Technologizing of the World (London, 1982), 83.

2 Stein, Jack, Richard Wagner & the Synthesis of the Arts (Westport, CT, 1960).

3 Nattiez, Jean-Jacques, Wagner Androgyne: A Study in Interpretation (Princeton, 1993).

4 Magee, Bryan, Wagner and Philosophy (London, 2000), 193ff.

5 Adorno, Theodor W., In Search of Wagner, trans. Rodney Livingstone (London and New York, 2005), 72.

6 ‘die vollkommene Unterschiedenheit des Orchesters in seiner rein sinnlichen Kundgebung von der ebenfalls rein sinnlichen Kundgebung der Vokaltonmasse’. Richard Wagner: Samtliche Schriften und Dichtungen, 16 vols. (Leipzig, 1911–14), 4: 166. Cf. Richard Wagner’s Prose Works, trans. W. Ashton Ellis, 8 vols., rpt. (Lincoln and London, 1995), 2: 309. (Oper und Drama)

7 ‘Diese ungemein wichtige … Wahrnehmung vermag uns über einen großen Teil der Unwirksamkeit unsrer bisherigen Opernmelodik aufzuklären.’ SSD 4: 168. Cf. PW 2: 310. (Oper und Drama)

8 ‘So werden wir augenblicklich gewahr, daß die Harmonie eben unvollständig, und die Melodie dadurch eben nicht vollständig harmonich gerechtfertigt ist, weil unser Gehör die menschliche Stimme, in ihrer großen Unterschiedenheit von der sinnlichen Klangfarbe der Instrumente, unwillkürlich von diesen getrennt wahrnimmt, und somit nur zwei verschiedene Momente, eine harmonisch unvollständig gerechtfertigte Melodie, und die lückenhaft harmonische Begleitung, zugeführt erhält.’ SSD 4: 168. Cf. PW 2: 310. (Oper und Drama)

9 ‘Die Gesamgstimme erschien im Vortrag der Melodie auf diesem harmonisch und melodisch vollständig abgeschlossenen Tonkörper im Grunde durchaus überflüssig und als ein zweiter, entstellender Kopf ihm unnatürlich aufgesetzt.’ SSD 4: 169. Cf. PW 2: 311. (Oper und Drama)

10 See Baudelaire, Charles, Selected Writings on Art and Literature, trans. P.E. Charvet (London, 1972), 329332. Baudelaire quotes Liszt’s essay on Lohengrin in its original French (pp. 329–30). Liszt’s essay had a complex publication history; full details are given in the excellent commentary by Gerhard Winkler and Rainer Kleinertz to volume 4 of Liszt’s complete writings. See Liszt, Sämtliche Schriften, 9 vols. [projected], gen. ed. Detlef Altenburg (Wiesbaden, 1989–), 4, 211–33.

11 Christopher Morris’s useful summary of the idealist traditions of cohesion among the arts reminds us that Wagner’s Gesamtkunstwerk was nourished on a long-standing impulse to unify media, making Wagner’s retention of separate media all the more striking; see ‘“Too Much Music”: The Media of Opera’, in The Cambridge Companion to Opera Studies¸ ed. Nicholas Till (Cambridge, 2012), esp. 103–5. Wagner’s stance finds sympathy with the Modernist film director Dziga Vertov in We. A Version of a Manifesto (1922), wherein he indefinitely deferred the utopia of synthesis to allow time to explore the integrity of individual new media: ‘We protest against the mixing of the arts that many call synthesis. The mixing of bad paints, even those ideally suited to the colours of the spectrum, produces not white but dirt. / We are for a synthesis at the zenith of achievement of every art form – but not before’. In Taylor, Richard and Christie, Ian (eds.), The Film Factory: Russian and Soviet Cinema in Documents, 1896–1939 (Abingdon, 1994), 6972, at 69.

12 Walter Benjamin argued back in 1938 that ‘technology subjugated the human senses to a complex kind of training’, coining the term Anschauungsansicht for instruction in perception and intuition that our senses undergo through exposure to media. See Benjamin, , Selected Writings, Volume 4: 1938–40 (Cambridge, MA, 2003), 328.

13 McLuhan, Marshall, Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man (Cambridge, MA, 1994), 9, 18. Examples of press coverage that asserts a public awareness of the relevance of his ideas in the new millennium would include: Stille, Alexander, ‘Marshall McLuhan is Back From the Dustbin of History’, New York Times (14 October 2000), (accessed 2 October 2013); and Beale, Nigel, ‘Living in Marshall McLuhan’s Galaxy’, The Guardian (28 February 2008), (accessed 2 October 2013).

14 Carr, Nicholas, The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to our Brain (New York, 2010); Clark, Andy, Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies, and the Future of Human Intelligence (New York, 2004); and Hayles, Katherine, How We Think: Digital Media and Contemporary Technogenesis (Chicago, 2012).

15 Hayles, How We Think, 3.

16 Derrida, Jacques, Of Grammatology, trans. Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak (Baltimore, 1998), 281.

17 In contrast, the related scholarly literature on the relation of opera to film, and opera’s shadowy afterlife in the mechanisms of film aesthetics is rich. A sampling of recent contribution would include Morris, Christopher, ‘Wagner Video’, Opera Quarterly 27 (2011), 235255; Citron, Marcia J., When Opera Meets Film (Cambridge, 2010); Grover-Friedlander, Michal, Vocal Apparitions: The Attraction of Cinema to Opera (Princeton, 2005); Abbate, Carolyn, ‘Wagner, Cinema, and Redemptive Glee’, Opera Quarterly 21 (2005), 597611; Wlaschin, Ken (ed.), Encyclopedia of Opera on Screen: A Guide to More than 100 Years of Opera Films, Videos, and DVDs (New Haven, 2004); David P. Schroeder, Cinemas Illusions, Operas Allure: The Operatic Impulse in film (New York, 2002); and Jeongwon Joe and Rose Theresa (eds.), Between Opera and Cinema (New York, 2002).

18 See Packer, Randall and Jordan, Ken, Multimedia: From Wagner to Virtual Reality (New York and London, 2001); and Smith, Matthew Wilson, The Total Work of Art: From Bayreuth to Cyberspace (New York, 2007).

19 The levels of perceived reality on stage are, of course, measured against the truism that, in opera, ‘most of the characters sing most or all of the time’, meaning that ‘[i]n that very obvious sense it is not realistic’. Abbate, Carolyn and Parker, Roger, A History of Opera: The Last 400 Years (London, 2012), 1.

20 ‘Diese brutalen Weltbesieger behagten sich nur in der positivsten Realität, ihre Einbildungskraft konnte sich nur in materiellster Verwirklichung befriedigen. Den, dem öffentlichen Leben schüchtern entflohenen, Philosophen ließen sie getrost sich dem abstraktesten Denken überliefern; in der Öffentlichkeit selbst liebten sie, sich der allerkonkretesten Mordlust zu überlassen, das menschliche Leiden in absoluter physischer Wirklichkeit sich vorgestellt zu sehen.’ SSD 3: 13. Cf. PW 1: 36. (Die Kunst und die Revolution). Another reading of Wagner’s caricature of feckless strength is that it betrays a certain fear of asking how it is with the world, of seeing things for what they are, bereft of ideology. And there is little for the imagination to feed on in such enquiry. Terry Eagleton aptly describes the condition as one of antagonism: ‘to bow our minds submissively to the actual requires a humility and self-effacement which the clamorous ego finds hard to stomach. It is an unglamorous business, distasteful to the fantasizing, chronically self-deceiving human mind.’ See Eagleton, , Figures of Dissent: Critical Essays on Fish, Spivak, Žižek and Others (London and New York, 2003), 87.

21 ‘allgemein von handlungen und dingen, die eine sinnlich wahrnehmbare realität besitzen, gebraucht’. See (accessed 18 July 2013).

22 ‘Die realste aller Kunstarten ist die Tanzkunst.’ SSD 3: 71. Cf. PW 1: 100. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

23 ‘[I]hr Gebaren ist ja nur Kunst, nicht Wahrheit.’ SSD 3: 78. Cf. PW 1: 106. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

24 ‘Ihr künstlerischer Stoff ist der wirkliche leibliche Mensch, und zwar nicht ein Teil desselben, sondern der ganze, von der Fußsohle bis zum Scheitel, wie er dem Auge sich darstellt.’ SSD 3: 71. Cf. PW 1: 100. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

25 Gumbrecht, Hans Ulrich, The Production of Presence: What Meaning Cannot Convey (Stanford, 2004), 99100.

26 ‘der Gedanke, diese bloße Bild der Erscheinung, ist an sich gestaltlos’. SSD 3: 103. Cf 1: 134. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

27 ‘Der Weg der Wissenschaft ist der vom Irrtum zur Erkenntnis, von der Vorstellung zur Wirklichkeit.’ SSD 3: 45. Cf. PW 1: 72. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

28 ‘Bei dem Volke ist alles Wirklichkeit und Tat; es handelt, und freut sich dann im Denken seines Handelns.’ SSD 3: 104–5. Cf. PW 1: 135–6. (Das Kunstwerk der Zukunft)

29 ‘Da nun hiergegen der namentlich leidenschaftlich erregten Musik so gern ein ihr innewohnendes lediglich pathologisches Element augesprochen zu werden pflegt, so dürfte es überraschen, gerade an diesem Beispiele zu erkennen, wie zart und von rein idealer Form ihre wirkliche Sphäre ist, weil das reale Schrecken der Wirklichkeit sich nicht in ihr erhalten kann, wogegen allerdings die Seele alles Wirklichen einzig in ihr sich rein ausdrückt.’ SSD 9: 152–3. Cf. PW 5: 152–3. (Über die Bestimmung der Oper)

30 ‘die einzige Wirklichkeit des seiner Apperzeption dargebotenen künstlerischen Vorganges’. SSD 9: 159. Cf. PW 5: 160. (Über Schauspieler und Sänger)

31 ‘der Verfasser des Stückes [steht] zu der eigentlichen “Kunst” nur soweit mit in Beziehung … als er die von ihm im voraus berechnete Wirkung der mimischen Darstellung für die Gestaltung seines Gedichtes vor allen Dingen verwertet hat’. SSD 9: 159. Cf. PW 5: 160. (Über Schauspieler und Sänger)

32 ‘der durchaus geniale, vollendete Mime [scheint] bei jenen Akten der Selbstentäußerung das Bewußtwein von sich in einem Grade aufzuopfern, daß er es in einem gewissen Sinne auch im gemeinen Leben nicht, oder wenigstens nie vollständig wiederfindet’. SSD 9: 217. Cf. PW 5: 216. (Über Schauspieler und Sänger)

33 ‘die dargestellten Vorgänge und Handlungen rein erdichteter Personen [erschüttern] uns in dem Maße … wie der Darsteller selbst, bis zur völligen Aufhebung seiner realen Persönlichkeit, von ihnen erfüllt, ja recht eigentlich besessen ist’. SSD 9: 159. Cf. PW 5: 161. (Über Schauspieler und Sänger)

34 ‘die Absicht und Annahme eines täuschenden Spieles [ist] von keiner Seite je verleugnet’. SSD 9: 159. Cf. PW 5: 161. (Über Schauspieler und Sänger)

35 ‘Die Kunst bleibt Kunst und kann niemals Wirklichkeit werden.’ Lobe, J.C., ‘Vierter Brief. Deutsche Musik’, Musikalische Briefe: Wahrheit über Tonkunst und Tonkünstler (Leipzig, 1852), 2233, at 31.

36 ‘Volle Naturwahrheit vernichtet die Kunst … Kein Mensch singt in der Wirklichkeit seinen Zorn, seine Verzweiflung … Könnte man aber einen Menschen zwingen, in der Wirklichkeit seinen Zorn, seine Verzweiflung auszusingen und man wollte, um naturwahr zu werden, auf der Bühne einen so Singenden genau copiren, so würde Jedermann mit Recht über solche Naturwahrheit lachen. / Das beachten die Deutschen zu wenig.Ibid., 31.

37 ‘The boundary-breaking violence of outbursts of the most painful passion, the natural venting of a deeply tragic subject, can only produce their harrowing effect when the standard of emotional expression which they exceed is observed in general.’ (‘Das alles Maß überschreitende Gewaltsame in den Ausbrüchen schmerzlichster Leidenschaft, das ja dem tieftragischen Stoffe wie zu seiner Entlastung naturgemäß zugehörig ist, kann nur dann seine erschüttene Wirkung hervorbringen, wenn das von ihm überschrittene Maß eben durchweg als Gesetz der gefühlvollen Kundgebung eingehalten ist.’) Wagner, SSD 10: 300. Cf. PW 6: 305. (Das Bühnenweihfestspiel in Bayreuth 1882)

38 Schiller, Friedrich, Über die ästhetische Erziehung des Menschen in einer Reihe von Briefen, ed. Stefan Matuschek (Frankfurt am Main, 2009); and Marcuse, Herbert, Eros and Civilization: A Philosophical Enquiry into Freud [1956], rpt. (Abingdon, 1998), 180.

39 Gadamer, Hans-Georg, Truth and Method [1960], rpt. (London and New York, 2004), 71.

40 Cited in Westerhoff, Jan, Twelve Examples of Illusions (Oxford, 2010), 7.

41 Bakhtin, Mikhail, Art and Answerability: Early Philosophical Essays, ed. Michael Holquist and Vadim Liapunov (Austin, 1990), 276.

42 Daniel J. Wakin, ‘The Multiplex as Opera House: Will They Serve Popcorn?’ New York Times (7 September 2006), (accessed 19 July 2013). Emphasis added.

43 See: (accessed 19 July 2013). Emphasis added.

44 Nicholas Cook, ‘Beyond Reproduction’ unpublished paper given as the inaugural 1684 Professor of Music Lecture at the University of Cambridge (October 2009).

45 Sterne, Jonathan, MP3: The Meaning of a Format (Durham and London, 2012), 4.

46 Chion, Michel, Audio-Vision: Sound on Screen, trans. Claudia Gorbman (New York, 1994), 9899.

47 Ibid., 108–9. Emphasis added.

48 Ibid., 112.

50 Peter Gelb’s statement, cited in Daniel J. Wakin, ‘The Multiplex as Opera House’.

51 Marc Schubin interview with Luiz Gazzola, (29 June 2013), (accessed 21 July 2013); and Stearnes, David Patrick, ‘Opera on the Big Screen’, The Inquirer (27 December 2006),–12–27/news/25399564_1_bellini-s-i-puritani-opera-fans-simulcast (accessed 21 July 2013).

52 Samuel Weber interviewed by Plate, Cassi in ‘Deux ex Media’, in idem, Mass Mediaurus: Form, Technics, Media (Stanford, CA, 1996), 160.

53 One attempt at this is Gooding, Wayne, ‘Better on the Big Screen’, The Wagner Journal 5 (2011), 8287.

54 Ernst, Wolfgang, Digital Memory and the Archive (Minneapolis and London, 2013), 106.

55 Ibid., 111

56 Marc Schubin interview with Gazzola, Luiz, (29 June 2013), (accessed 21 July 2013).

57 Anon., ‘Wohler Supplies Sound Field Stereo-to-5.1 Upmixers to All Mobile Video’, Broadcast Engineering (10 November 2011), (accessed 20 July 2013).

58 Ibid.

59 Baudrillard, Jean, Simulacra and Simulation [1981], trans. Shiela Faria Glaser (Ann Arbor, 2010), 1213, 20.

60 Abbate, Carolyn, ‘Music – Drastic or Gnostic?’, Critical Inquiry 30 (2004), 505536, at 532.

61 Veal, Michael, Dub: Soundscapes and Shattered Songs in Jamaican Reggae (Middletown, CT, 2007), 218.

62 ‘There are typically 10 or 11 microphones in the orchestra pit, generally one for each orchestra section; the harp usually gets its own mic. For the singers, the basic pickup is four pairs of microphones across the lip of the stage: left, left center, right center, and right. Each pair has a short shotgun for distant pickup and a cardioid for closer pickup. There are three distant microphones in the house for ambiance pickup.’ Mark Schubin interview with Opera Lively (29 June 2013),

63 William G. Gardner, ‘3D Audio and Acoustic Environment Modeling’ (15 March 1999), 2, (accessed 1 July 2013). See also, Gardner, ‘3-D Audio Using Loudspeakers’, Ph.D. dissertation, MIT (1997), (accessed 21 July 2013).

64 Austin, Larry and Field, Ambrose, ‘Sound Diffusion in Composition and Performance Practice II: An Interview with Ambrose Field’, Computer Music Journal 25 (2001), 2130, at 23.

65 Moulton, David, ‘The Loudspeaker as Musical Instrument’ (May 2003), (accessed 2 October 2013).

66 Hoffman, Elizabeth, ‘On Performing Electroacoustic Musics: A Non-idiomatic Case Study for Adorno’s Theory of Musical Reproduction’, Organised Sound 18 (2013), 6070, at 64.

67 Augé, Marc, Non-Places: An Anthropology of Supermodernity, trans. John Howe (London, 1995), 78.

68 Manovich, Lev, The Language of New Media (Cambridge, MA, 2001), 280.

69 Barker, Martin, Live to Your Local Cinema: The Remarkable Rise of Livecasting (Basingstoke, 2013), 5ff.

70 The three problems reported were falling donations, an oversize auditorium averaging 77 per cent attendance in 2005–6, and an ageing demographic. See Clarke, Andrew, ‘Change of Course for a Met Supertanker’, Financial Times (24 February 2006), (accessed 20 July 2013); and Ed Pilkington, ‘Streetwise Met Kickstarts Revival with Puccini on the Pavement’, Guardian (27 September 2006), (accessed 20 July 2013). See also Wakin, ‘The Multiplex as Opera House’.

71 Attali, Jacques, Noise: The Political Economy of Music (Manchester, 1985).

72 Said, Edward, ‘Performance as an Extreme Occasion’ [1989], in idem, The Edward Said Reader (London, 2001), 317346.

73 Stenholm, Stig, The Quest for Reality: Bohr and Wittgenstein – Two Complementary Views (Oxford, 2011), 2.

74 Manovich, Lev, ‘The Aesthetics of Virtual Worlds: Report from Los Angeles’, Ctheory (22 May 1996), (accessed 22 July 2013).

75 Ernst, , Digital Memory and the Archive, 157.

76 Hoffman, , ‘On Performing Electroacoustic Musics’, 63, 65. Emphasis added.

77 Gitelman has argued that while delivery systems are technological tools, media involve the formation of social processes through ‘protocols’, that is, ‘that you answer “Hello?” and that you pay the company, but also standards like touch-tones and twelve-volt lines … [Hence,] new media are less points of epistemic rupture than they are socially embedded sites for the ongoing negotiation of meaning as such’. See Gitelman, , Always Already New: Media History and the Data of Culture (Cambridge, MA, 2006), 56.

78 ‘Delivery systems are simply and only technologies; media are also cultural systems … Printed words did not kill spoken words. Cinema did not kill theatre. Television did not kill radio. Each old medium was forced to coexist with the emerging media … Old media are not being replaced. Rather, their functions and status are shifted by the introductions of new technologies’. Jenkins, Henry, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide (New York, 2008), 14.

79 Ibid., 11.

80 Kittler, Friedrich, Weltatem: On Wagner’s Media Technology’, in Wagner in Retrospect, ed. Leroy R. Shaw, Nancy R. Cirillo and Marion Miller (Amsterdam, 1987), 203212. The touchstone for almost all readings of Wagner-as-acoustician over the last decade have been the 136 bars of sustained E-flat major that open Das Rheingold (though the realist echoes of sailors in Der fliegende Holländer and Tristan, the tonal portraits of acoustic distance in Lohengrin, and the calculation of bell resonance in Parsifal would have equally worthy claims). In fact, Kittler’s celebrated reading of the Prelude to Rheingold as a ‘vocal physiological dream... a transition from a logic to a physics of sound’ plays lip service to Wagner’s (unprovable) biographical account of the Prelude’s genesis: that he suffered a feverish night at La Spezia, tossing and turning, shivering, semi-conscious and with a high temperature. A tacit assumption within Kittler’s media-aesthetic reading is that the sustained E-flat frequencies are a kind of auscultation, then – literal internal aurality – refined either psychologically by Wagner’s cognitive musical sense, or artistically, for ears in the opera house.

81 The social scientist Ithiel de Sola Pool predicted this convergence back in 1983, which can easily be read in terms of opera distribution technologies: ‘a service [live opera] that was provided in the past by any one medium – be it broadcasting, the press, or telephony – can now be provided in several different physical ways. So the one-to-one relationship that used to exist between a medium and its use is eroding’. See de Sola Pool, Technologies of Freedom: On Free Speech in an Electronic Age (Cambridge, MA, 1983), 54.

82 Baudrillard, , Simulacra and Simulation, 4445.

83 von Wolzogen, Hans, Thematische Leitfadendurch die Musik zu Richard Wagners Festspiel, ‘Der Ring des Nibelungen’, 2nd edn (Leipzig, 1876), 52.

84 A detailed database of the use of this theme within these media platforms is given on the TV Tropes site: (accessed 22 July 2013).

85 Ironically from the perspective of constructing ‘reality’, YouTube user Nicholas Schubert comments on the HD clip of this section from the film: ‘it’s scenes like this that make you want to get surround sound for your television’. See comment posted 30 June 2013 by Nicholas Schubert, (accessed 21 July 2013).

86 Collins, Karen, Game Sound: An Introduction to the History, Theory, and Practice of Video Game Music and Sound Design (London and Cambridge, MA, 2008), 130.

87 Jenkins, , Convergence Culture, 8.

88 See Another Gamers Blog, (accessed 21 July 2013).

89 Slavoj Žižek, “Foreword: Why is Wagner Worth Saving?”, in Adorno, In Search of Wagner, xxiv.

90 Walton, Chris, Richard Wagner’s Zurich: A Muse of Place (Rochester, NY, 2007), 249.

91 Friedberg, Anne, Window Shopping: Cinema and the Postmodern (Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1994), 2ff.

92 Richard Wagner, Sämtliche Werke, 31 vols. [projected], ed. Egon Voss (et al.), vol. 14, II (Mainz, 1973), 62–3, 85, 91, 221.

93 Parsifal: ‘Dies alles – hab’ ich nun geträumt?’ (Act II, Parsifal).

94 Schopenhauer, Arthur, Parerga and Paralipomena: Short Philosophical Essays, trans. E.F.J. Payne (Oxford, 1974), I, 239.

95 See, for instance, the opening discussion of Gianni Schicchi as a ‘one-shot game’ in Samuelson, Larry and Mailath, George J., Repeated Games and Reputations: Long-run Relationships (Oxford, 2007), 12; and Chrissochoidis, Illias and Huck, Steffen, ‘Elsa’s Reason: On Beliefs and Motives in Wagner’s Lohengrin, Cambridge Opera Journal 22 (2010), 6591.

96 This is mentioned in the online review by IGN, ‘Cryo’s latest point-and-stare adventure game will want to make you cry’ (20 July 1999), (accessed 2 October 2013).

97 Though, equally, such an exploratory discourse can be read as an extension of Wolfgang Wagner’s claim, documented only in conversation by film director Tony Palmer, that ‘if my grandfather were alive today, he would undoubtedly be working in Hollywood. He would not have been able to resist the technical wizardry at his disposal.’ Cited in Joe, Jeongwon and Gilman, Sander L. (eds.), Wagner & Cinema (Bloomington and Indianapolis, 2010), x.

98 Auslander, Philip, Liveness: Performance in a Mediatized Culture (London and New York, 1999), 158.

99 Adorno, Theodor W., The Culture Industry: Selected Essays on Mass Culture (Abingdon, 2001), 44.

I am most grateful to Justin Williams for offering thoughts on an earlier version of this article.

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