It is said that when planning revenge one should dig two graves. This is perhaps an easily accomplished task in the Kirsten Harms staging of Richard Strauss’ Elektra, currently being revived by the Deutsche Oper Berlin. The production opens with Elektra already half-buried in gravel in the barren courtyard below looming castle walls. It is Elektra’s hour to mourn her father Agamemnon’s death, the very hour of his death, and the castle maids reconnoiter her status, both fascinated and fearful. We begin to explore the depths of Elektra’s obsession with revenge for the murder of her father.

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