Wagner, on the other hand, as much as Keenlyside admires him, paints with too broad a brushstroke. 'To my mind, the whole can never can be more than the sum of its parts.' the singer says. 'Wagner's stories are always about the bigger picture: right and wrong, punishment, reward. The Teutonic myths in Wagner tell the story of a great, deep, wonderful culture with which, ironically, I have a lifelong love affair. I just don't find his subjects very profound.'
"Unfortunately, Macbeth is often played too loudly and sung too roughly. We know from Verdi's letters that in the first performance of Macbeth there was an interval of an hour-and-a-half, during which he rehearsed the singers because he was determined that they would sing piano and it the way he wanted. So he held the curtain until they got it right."