Here is a few listening ideas for studying the music of Richard Wagner. This is just part of the content included in the Fun Music Company lesson plan series on the great composers.

Die Walkure (The Valkyrie): Ride of the Valkyries.
You may recognize this section from The Valkyrie as it has been used in several movies. As you listen to this work, imagine you are a film director and have chosen this section of music to accompany a very dramatic scene in your movie. Either write a description of the scene or work in groups to create and act out the scene for the class.

Tannhauser: Overture
Note that an overture contains several of the main musical themes that will appear throughout the opera. The second work on this list (from Act 3) illustrates how one of the themes is used within the opera plot itself.

Tannhäuser: Act 3 “Pilgrim’s Chorus”

Lohengrin: Bridal chorus

The original form of this tune that most people know as “Here Comes the Bride” is scored for chorus and orchestra. The recording below is arranged for organ solo.