OP0118. DIE WALKÜRE, Live Performance, 6 Dec., 1941, w.Leinsdorf Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Helen Traubel, Astrid Varnay (début), Lauritz Melchior, Friedrich Schorr, Alexander Kipnis, Kerstin Thorborg, etc.; LOHENGRIN - Excerpts, 2 Jan., 1943, w.Leinsdorf Cond. Met Opera Ensemble; Astrid Varnay, Kerstin Thorborg & Lauritz Melchior. (Italy) 3-Myto 913.41, w.libretto. Very long out of-print, Final Copy!
“Astrid Varnay was the charismatic dramatic soprano whose distinguished 55-year career began at 23 with a last-minute début [above] at the Metropolitan Opera, singing the role of Sieglinde in WAGNER’S DIE WALKÜRE for an indisposed Lotte Lehmann. Six days [after her Met début] Helen Traubel, scheduled to sing Brünnhilde in DIE WALKÜRE, took ill and Ms Varnay, in another last-minute substitution, sang the role, wowing New York audiences and critics….Her work recently came to public attention again when the Testament label released the first two installments of a complete account of Wagner’s RING, recorded live at the 1955 Bayreuth Festival….”
- Anthony Tommasini, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 6 Sept., 2006