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Subject: Re: Greatest Wagnerian Sopranos (was Re: Birgit Nilsson Great Streaming Documentary)
From: Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Bob Rideout <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 10 Jan 2018 15:42:10 +0000
Content-Type:text/plain
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Hi Rich

She also sang Kundry 4 times at the Rome Opera in Feb-Mar
1949 with Beirer as Parsifal and Siepi as Gurnemanz.

The RAI recording was made in 1950.

Bob

On Wed, Jan 10, 2018 at 10:28 Rich Lowenthal <[log in to unmask]>
wrote:

> I have to cast my vote with Frida Leider--I think her recordings remain
> unsurpassed.
>
> As far as recording omissions I would have to go with the Callas Isotta
> and Brunnhilde. I often wonder, if we had more of her Wagner, would we
> be discussing her place among the greatest Wagner sopranos of the
> century? We're lucky to have her Kundry on disk.
>
> Of course her Wagner performance history was pretty limited--twelve
> Isottas and six Brunnhildes, if I'm counting right.
>
> Rich
>
>
> ------ Original Message ------
> From: "donald kane" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Sent: 1/10/2018 10:04:19 AM
> Subject: Re: Greatest Wagnerian Sopranos (was Re: Birgit Nilsson Great
> Streaming Documentary)
>
> >Martha Modl's Kundry in the first Knappertsbusch PARSIFAL is an example
> >of something so right, so unexpected, and so revealing, that it could
> >never
> >be repeated, not even by herself.  When I heard her live, a few years
> >later, as
> >Brunnhilde, she was literally voiceless.
> >
> >Among the sad omissions of the recording era, (yes, I have begun to
> >think
> >of
> >the last half of the twentieth century that way), was Ingrid Bjoner's
> >Isolde. She
> >had been chosen to sing it in the 100th anniversary production given in
> >Munich,
> >and for several years was one of the world's favorite Irische Kind -
> >everywhere but
> >on records or, for that matter, New York;  Tanglewood being the nearest
> >she
> >came.
> >
> >Bjoner remains, also, my favorite Eva and Elsa and, in competition with
> >Niilsson,
> >my preferred Turandot,  which exists in excellent Met matinee sound.
> >But,
> >to the
> >recording studio, it was a nonexistent career.
> >
> >dtmk
> >
> >On Tue, Jan 9, 2018 at 4:11 PM, robert levine <[log in to unmask]>
> >wrote:
> >
> >>Mödl at her best? Not MY favorite - too unappealing a sound  - I'd
> >>choose
> >>Nilsson, Flagstad and maybe Grob-Prandl.
> >>B
> >>
> >>On Tue, Jan 9, 2018 at 4:08 PM, Max D. Winter <[log in to unmask]>
> >>wrote:
> >>
> >> > "For me, [Nilsson] and Flagstad rule as the two Wagnerian sopranos
> >>of the
> >> > Twentieth
> >> > Century."
> >> >
> >> > Well, I would make it a quartet:  Flagstad, Nilsson, Leider, and
> >>Varnay,
> >> > with Flagstad and
> >> > Nilsson taking the vocal honors, and Leider and Varnay the dramatic.
> >> > Although Varnay and
> >> > Leider were tremendous vocally, as well, and neither Flagstad nor
> >>Nilsson
> >> > was a slouch on
> >> > stage.  When Flagstad first appeared on the international scene,
> >>many
> >> > Wagner lovers, while
> >> > recognizing Flagstad's vocal splendor, regarded Leider as her
> >>superior
> >> > over all.  For those
> >> > who don't know Leider's voice, check her out on youtube:
> >> >
> >> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvKrlRnh2kA
> >> >
> >> > https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IEoeqoORFS4
> >> >
> >> > There is a fantastic live recording from Covent Garden of Leider and
> >> > Melchior in
> >> > Gotterdammerung Act II, conducted by Furtwangler, although at that
> >>point
> >> > in her career
> >> > Leider was starting to sing a bit flat at times in the upper
> >>register.
> >> >
> >> > Traubel was great, too, but IMO not in the absolute top echelon with
> >>the
> >> > other ladies.  Modl
> >> > was a dramatic force of nature on stage, which one can hear even on
> >> > recordings, but vocally
> >> > compromised as a pushed-up mezzo with a problematic top and rather
> >>thick
> >> > tone.
> >> >
> >> > There really hasn't been a great Wagnerian soprano (the
> >>hochdramatische
> >> > variety) since
> >> > Nilsson hung up her breastplate and horned helmet.  Behrens, Voigt
> >>and
> >> > Stemme,
> >> > notwithstanding their various merits, have all been make-dos in one
> >>way
> >>or
> >> > another.  Rita
> >> > Hunter was excellent - I heard her as Brunnhilde in the 70s - but
> >>her
> >> > grotesque obesity,
> >> > outsized even by operatic standards, was a real problem on stage.
> >>Jones
> >> > made a huge
> >> > sound and was compelling dramatically, but I was always bothered by
> >>her
> >> > wide vibrato,
> >> > which at times veered into a genuine wobble.
> >> >
> >> > MDW
> >> >
> >> >
>
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