OP0215. SALOME, Live Performance, 30 Sept., 1947, Covent Garden, w.Clemens Krauss Cond. Maria Cebotari, Elisabeth Höngen, Marko Rothmüller, Julius Patzak, Karl Friedrich, etc. (Germany) 2-Gebhardt 0011. Very Long out-of-print, Final Sealed Copy! - 4035122000115
“As we can learn from her repertory, Maria Cebotari was an extraordinarily versatile singer. She was often considered a ‘predecessor’ to Maria Callas. Indeed, the two sopranos had a great deal in common. Both were true artists of great musicality and totally committed to their art. Both were utterly ‘reliable’, never missing an entry or a rehearsal. They would never come along half-knowing the music, and they could be entrusted with something new and it would be learnt quickly and intelligently. No wonder that the two Marias were loved by all great conductors. With the underlying darkness of her soprano, a pronounced vibrato and brilliance at the top of her range - but above all with the intelligence, intensitiy and sheer energy, she did justice to every rôle. She was one of the very few singers who succeeded in lyrical, dramatic and coloratura parts….Four composers were essential for her short career: Mozart, Strauss, Verdi and Puccini. In 1935, she sang the part of Aminta in the world première of Richard Strauss' DIE SCHWEIGSAME FRAU under Karl Böhm at Dresden Semper Opera House. Strauss advised her to move to Berlin, and in 1936 she joined the Berlin State Opera, where she was a prima donna until 1946. That year, she sang Susanna in LE NOZZE DI FIGARO, Zerlina in DON GIOVANNI, and Sophie in DER ROSENKAVALIER for Dresden Semper Opera Company's performances at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden. From then on, she appeared at many great opera houses including Vienna Staatsoper and at La Scala.
Richard Strauss described her as ‘the best all-rounder on the European stage; never late and never cancels’. Herbert von Karajan, during a BBC interview decades after her death, said she was the greatest Madama Butterfly he had ever conducted.”
- Andrea Shum-Binder, subito-cantabile
"Marko Rothmüller, who made his Metropolitan Opera début in Wagner's MEISTERSINGER VON NÜRNBERG in 1959, had a singing career that began with Weber's FREISCHÜTZ in Hamburg in 1932. He rejoined the Met's company for the 1964-1965 season. By then, he had been appointed a professor of voice in Bloomington, where he started teaching in 1955. He was a native of Croatia, and studied at the Zagreb Music Academy. He went to Vienna to train as a singer with Franz Steiner and study composition with Alban Berg; the title role of Berg's WOZZECK became a signature piece. He studied for that role with Erich Kleiber, who conducted the Berlin première of WOZZECK in 1925.
After his engagement at the Hamburg Opera, Mr Rothmüller established himself as one of Europe's most promising baritones, scoring successes particularly in works by Wagner and Verdi. Because he was of Jewish descent, he left Germany in the early 1930's to sing in Zagreb and Zürich, where he appeared regularly until 1947. His European engagements then took him to the Vienna State Opera, Covent Garden and the Glyndebourne Opera at the Edinburgh International Festival of Music and Drama.
In 1954, he returned to Germany for the first time with a guest appearance in West Berlin. His American début was with the New York City Center Opera as Amonasro in Verdi's AÏDA in 1948, after which he traveled extensively in this country for occasional opera and concert engagements."
- Wolfgang Saxon, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 22 Jan., 1993
“Clemens Heinrich Krauss was a leading Austrian conductor, particularly associated with the music of Richard Strauss, who got to his major positions by the resignation of conductors less sympathetic to the German Nazi regime.
His mother was Clementine Krauss, a leading Viennese actress and singer. He was also related to Gabrielle Krauss (1842 - 1904), an important nineteenth century soprano. His father was a figure in the Austrian Imperial Court. When Clemens went into music, he used his mother's name because of its theatrical history.
When he was a boy, he was a chorister in the Hofkapelle (Imperial Choir). He attended the Vienna Conservatory, graduating in 1912. He studied composition with Grädener and theory with Heuberger. After graduation he was chorus master in the Brünn Theater (1912 - 1913), and there he made his conducting début in 1913.
He made the rounds of regional centers, conducting in Riga (1913 - 1914), Nüremberg (1915), and Sczeczin (1916 - 1921). The latter appointment gave him ample opportunity to travel to Berlin to hear Artur Nikisch conduct the Philharmonic, a major influence. His next appointment was back in Austria, where he became director of the opera and symphony concerts in Graz. In 1922 he joined the conducting staff of the Vienna State Opera and teacher of the conducting class at the State Academy of Germany. In 1923 he became conductor of the Vienna Tonkünstler Concerts (until 1927), and Intendant of the opera in Frankfurt am Maine and director of the Museum Concerts in 1924, until 1929.
He visited the United States in 1929, conducting in Philadelphia and at the New York Philharmonic. Also in 1929 he was appointed director of the Vienna State Opera. Its orchestra, in its independent concert form as the Vienna Philharmonic, appointed him its music director in 1930. He was a regular conductor at the Salzburg Festival from 1926 to 1934. In 1933 and 1934 he gave up his Vienna positions, becoming director of the Berlin State Opera in 1935 after Erich Kleiber resigned in protest over Nazi rule. Leaving Austria for Nazi Germany was no hardship for Krauss, who was a friend of both Hitler and Göring. In 1933 he took over the preparations for the premieres of Strauss' opera ARABELLA when the principled conductor Fritz Busch left. In 1937 he was appointed Intendant of the Munich National Theater, following the resignation there of Knappertsbusch. He became a close friend of Richard Strauss, wrote the libretto to the opera CAPRICCIO (which he premiered in Munich in 1942), and DER LIEBE DER DANAE. He also conducted the premiere of Strauss' anti-War cantata ‘Friedenstag’.
After the Munich opera house was bombed, shutting it down, he returned to conduct the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra until it closed shortly before the end of the War (1944 - 1945). After the War, Allied officials investigated his pro-Nazi activities and because of them forbade him from appearing in public until 1947. Notably, however, they also found that he had frequently acted to assist a number of individual Jews escape the Third Reich machine. When his ban was lifted he resumed frequently conducting the Vienna Philharmonic, including its famous New Years Day concerts.
He conducted at Covent Garden in London (1951 to 1953) and in the 1953 Bayreuth Festival [whose RING of that season is famously notable]. He was married to the soprano Viorica Ursuleac. He was in Mexico on vacation when he died there in 1954.”
- Joseph Stevenson, allmusic.com