Later in the same year Echegaray won a popular triumph with La Esposa del vengador, in which the good and bad qualities-the clever stagecraft and unbridled extravaganceof his later work are clearly noticeable.
Moreover Silva possessed a knowledge of stagecraft, and, if he had lived, he might have emancipated the drama in Portugal from its dependence on foreign writers; but the triple licence of the Palace, the Ordinary and the Inquisition, which a play required, crippled spontaneity and freedom.
Not until the third act does the great Wagner arbitrate in the struggle between amateurishness and theatricality in the music, though at all points his epoch-making stagecraft asserts itself with a force that tempts us to treat the whole work as if it were on the Wagnerian plane of Tannhauser's account of his pilgrimage in the third act.
In the development of characters and intellectual ideas Wagner's later works show a power before which his earlier stagecraft shrinks into insignificance.
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