Header Image: 
Header Title to Display: 
About the Wagner Society

History

The Wagner Society of Northern California is part of a tradition dating back to 1871, when Richard Wagner inspired the founding of the Wagner Vereine in the hope that they would finance the first Bayreuth festival performance of Der Ring des Nibelungen. The drawing room at Wahnfried was painted with the coats-of-arms of all the German cities with Wagner Societies.

Today, the Society is one of many around the world which provide an opportunity for lovers of Wagner’s music — from the beginner to the sophisticate — to come together to share experiences, to learn, and to help promote appreciation and performance of the works of Richard Wagner.

The Society is characterized by the warmth and camaraderie which prevail among those sharing a deep common interest. The Society sponsors a variety of public programs and social events, publishes a quarterly journal, supports young Wagner artists through a grant program, sometimes provides tickets to Bayreuth, and maintains rewarding relationships with a distinguished group of Honorary Members. 

Programs and Events

The Society holds meetings and events approximately monthly. Programs include scholarly lectures, interviews with prominent Wagnerian artists, film showings, recitals, panel discussions, exhibitions, and receptions for visiting performers. The Society has produced two complete operas: a concert performance of Der fliegende Holländer and a fully-staged Das Rheingold. Each December the Society celebrates the holidays with a "Cosima's Birthday" party, and each May brings a gala Wagner's Birthday banquet, usually with one of the stars of the Wagnerian world as guest of honor.

Here, two of the great Wagnerian singers of our time and Honorary Members of the Society, the late Hans Hotter and the late Jess Thomas, with former WSNC president Verna Parino at a Society reception.

Grant Program

An important activity for the Wagner Society is to support the education and development of young Wagner artists and scholars. In 1985 the Society established the WILLIAM O. CORD MEMORIAL GRANT FUND and created a Grant Committee to solicit and evaluate applications for support. Since then many promising young singers and production artists have been awarded grants, and several have gone on to launch international careers.

Board of Directors

Carolee Anderson
Vice-President, Membership Chair

1231 Teneighth Way
Sacramento, CA 95818

Jeff Bart

146 Westbrook Avenue
Daly City, CA 94015
(415) 264-0280

Gary Lang
Nominations Chair, Graphics

355 Chenery Street
San Francisco, CA 94131
(415) 378-8165

Terri Stuart
President, Programs Chair

c/o Wagner Society of Northern California
P.O. Box 590990
San Francisco,
CA 94159-0990
(925) 285-3690 (cell)

Eiko Kikawada
Social Committee Chair

1685 Bayridge Way, #201
San Mateo, CA 94402
(650) 773-1575

Martin Schoell

c/o WSNC
P.O. Box 590990
San Francisco, CA 94159
(925) 818-0318

Valerie Hamamoto
Daniel Kane
Treasurer

1210 Josephine Street
Berkeley, CA  94703-1112
(510) 525-4355

Gale Lederer
Secretary
Andrew Rombakis
Grant Committee Chair

198 Carnelian Way San Francisco, CA 94131
(415) 641-4067

Joan Lam

1130 Via Paraiso, Salinas, CA 93901
(831) 272-3880

Diane Parker

 

Editorial Advisory Board

Robert Fisher
Editor, Leitmotive
Liese Bauer

Mill Valley, CA

 

Mary Cicora

Mountain View, CA

Thomas Grey

Stanford University

Cyrus Hamlin

Yale University

Herbert Lindenberger

Stanford University

David Littlejohn

University of California, Berkeley

Thomas May

Seattle, WA

Dunbar Ogden

University of California, Berkeley

Pamela Potter

University of Wisconsin

Duane W. Roller

Ohio State University

Nicholas Vazsonyi

University of South Carolina

Simon Williams

University of California, Santa Barbara

Honorary Members

Kurt Herbert Adler

(1905–1988)

Janis Martin
Irene Dalis
(1925-2014)
Glynn Ross

(1914-2005)

Helga Dernesch
Donald Runnicles
Leonie Rysanek

(1926-1998)

Gwyneth Jones
Wolfgang Sawallisch

(1923-2013)

Speight Jenkins
Thomas Stewart

(1926-2006)

Nikolaus Lehnhoff
Blanche Thebom

(1915-2010)

Lotfi Mansouri

(1929-2013)

Jess Thomas

(1927–1993)

Astrid Varnay

(1918-2006)

Jane Eaglen
Hans Hotter

(1909-2003)

Greer Grimsley
David Gockley