Posts tagged as "richard-wagner"

Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen – Explorations

March 16, 2016

To mark the worldwide bicentenary celebrations of Wagner’s birth, a set of four CDs was recorded for the Decca label by Australian Wagner scholar, author and lecturer Peter Bassett, as an introduction to and commentary on Richard Wagner’s great cycle of four music dramas: Der Ring des Nibelungen. The recording uses extensive musical excerpts from the […]

Hans Knappertsbusch conducts Wagner

March 15, 2016

‘It’s Wagner’s opera: let’s present him and not ourselves!’ This remark by Hans Knappertsbusch to Hans Hotter as the singer was about go on stage as Gurnemanz at Bayreuth in 1964, was characteristic of the conductor’s attitude. Singers’ egos, directors’ concepts and designers’ flights of fancy had no place in the Knappertsbusch vision of Wagner’s […]

George London sings Wagner

March 15, 2016

George London was born in Montreal, Canada; when he was fifteen the family moved to the United States. His original surname was Burnstein (he also used Burnson for a time) and his forebears were from Širvintos in Lithuania. He began his singing studies in Los Angeles and by the 1940s was touring with a trio […]

Jess Thomas sings Wagner

March 15, 2016

Among the many Heldentenoren spoken of in glowing terms, perhaps none has been so unfairly neglected as Jess Thomas. Full-throated and resplendent, not a hint of strain, an amazing array of colours in the voice (from sotto voce to overpowering), he possessed an artistry that was not only a thrill in the theatre but that […]

Ben Heppner sings Wagner

March 15, 2016

On this album, Ben Heppner – recognised as one of the world’s leading Heldentenors – features a selection of the finest excerpts for tenor voice from Wagner’s ‘Der Ring des Nibelungen’. Tracing the life of Wagner’s ultimate hero, Siegfried, from his father Siegmund (‘Die Walküre’) to Siegfried’s youth (‘Siegfried’) and death (‘Götterdämmerung’), the album features famous […]

Astrid Varnay sings Wagner

March 15, 2016

Astrid Varnay (1918–2006) was born in Sweden of Hungarian heritage and raised in America. She went on to become one of the most sought-after dramatic sopranos of the 20th century and one of the best-known Wagnerian heroic sopranos of her generation. Her voice was often praised for its seemingly limitless upper register. On this generously […]

The Art of Sándor Kónya

March 12, 2016

The celebrated Hungarian tenor, Sándor Kónya (1923–2002), made regrettably few recordings. With a voice of ‘lirico-heroic splendour’ (Andrew Porter, Opera magazine), he brought strength of purpose and real nobility to his portrayals on stage, with generously warm vocal projection. He was described by Opera magazine as ‘the finest Lohengrin since Franz Völker’. Collected here are […]

Wagner: Der fliegende Holländer

March 7, 2016

In 1948, the young Hungarian conductor, Ferenc Fricsay (1914–1963) who had studied with Béla Bartók and Zoltán Kodály, was invited to Berlin to become chief conductor of the RIAS (Radio in the American Sector) Symphonie Orchester and chief conductor of the Städtische Oper (today, the Deutsche Oper Berlin). The RIAS Symphonie Orchester changed its name […]