Siegfried’s Funeral Music Wagner


Siegfried’s Funeral March from


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Our hero, Siegfried, is dead. Cruelly speared in the back by Hagen. His hunting horn was never to be heard again, unless as a ghost. In a traditional Viking funeral, fellow warriors carry his body to the Viking ship on a Viking shield. The procession is indeed solemn, and the brooding anger of his death is easily heard in the music. Thoughts then turn to Siegfrieds heroism and his great deeds, his body is placed on board the ship, and the moorings are let loose. As the funeral ship moves out, the Viking archers light their arrows, and pause before they ignite the floating funeral pyre. The Sword of True Manhood motif is heard in full forte in the cornet section (bar 41), then the arrows are released. As the burning arrows target the ship the music reaches its first full climax as his journey to Valhalla begins (bar 45). There are several emotional outbursts before the music returns to a more sombre nature. The funeral entourage moves away in sadness, harbouring thoughts of vengeance for their lost hero. On the YouTube link the band playing is The Fairey Band, conducted by Frank Renton from my album with them in 2007 ( “It’s Not Unusual”

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