OP1508. COSÌ FAN TUTTE, Broadcast Performance, 1951, w.Schröder Cond. Hessischen Rundfunks Ensemble; Clara Ebers, Annelies Kupper, Franz Fehringer, Karl Schmitt-Walter, etc. (E.U.) 3-Walhall 0203. - 4035122652031
"Trained by Eduard Erhard in Karlsruhe, Clara Ebers began her career 1924 as a volunteer at the National Theatre of Karlsruhe. In 1925-26 she sang at the City Theatre of Mönchengladbach, 1926-28 at the Düsseldorf Opera, 1928-44 at the Frankfurt Opera, after she had guested there successfully as Olympia in LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN. In addition, she sang as a successor to Adele Kern in rôles like Susanna in NOZZE, Despina and Fiordiligi in COSÌ FAN TUTTE, Gilda in RIGOLETTO, Zerbinetta in ARIADNE AUF NAXOS and Daphne in the Strauss operas.
With the Frankfurt Ensemble she guested in 1934 in Amsterdam as Sophie in DER ROSENKAVALIER. Further appearances in 1934 at the City Theatre of Zürich,
1935 at the Staatsoper Dresden, 1937-38 at the opera of Antwerp, 1938 with the Maggio Musical Fiorentino (as Helmwige in the WALKÜRE). On 6 Aug., 1937 she sang
in a soprano solo in the première of Orff’s CARMINA BURANA. On 13 Jan., 1942 she created the rôle of Isabella in the première Egk’s opera COLUMBUS. In 1938-41 Ebers made appearances Frankfurt, Bucharest, Sofia, Athens, Belgrade, Zagreb and Barcelona.
After the Second World War she resumed her career first at the Theatre of Kiel. In 1946 she was appointed as the first Soprano to the State Opera of Hamburg, where she remained until 1965. Here she moved into rôles like Leonora in TROVATORE and LA FORZA DEL DESTIN, Desdemona in OTELLO, Pamina in DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE, Agathe in DER FREISCHÜTZ, Eurydice in Gluck’S ORFEO, the four female rôles in LES CONTES D’HOFFMANN, Konstanze in ENTFÜHRUNG, Maddalena in ANDREA CHÉNIER, Arabella, the Countess in CAPRICCIO and the Empress in DIE FRAU OHNE SCHATTEN; above all, however, she was loved as the Marschallin in DER ROSENKAVALIER. She made appearances at the state operas of Berlin and Munich, at La Scala, in Amsterdam and Brussels, at the Teatro San Carlos Lisbon, at the opera of Nice and at the theatre of Berne (Switzerland), with great success. At Covent Garden, in 1950, she was heard in LA TRAVIATA. At the Vienna Staatsoper, in 1963, as the Marschallin. She guested with the festivals of Aix in Provence (1949), Edinburgh and Glyndebourne (1950 as the Countess in NOZZE, and was also a respected concert Soprano. At her song recitals she was accompanied several times by Hans Pfitzner at the piano. From 1964-71 she was Professor at the College of Music Hamburg.”
“Annelies Kupper (1906-87) was a grande dame of the German stages specializing in Mozart, but with enough power to take on Aïda, some Strauss heroines (Ariadne, Daphne), Tannhäuser’s Elizabeth and the heavy-duty heroines of Die Toten Augen, Die Tote Stadt and Tiefland, all heard on this disc….She does get splendid 'backup' from Wolfgang Windgassen in TANNHÄUSER, a ferocious Amonasro from Hans Reinmar in the Nile Scene’, Kurt Boehme in TIEFLAND, and Lorenz Fehenberger in the glorious ‘Glück, das mir Verblieb’ from DIE TOTE STADT.”
- Charles H. Parsons, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, May/June, 2012
“After she had already worked as concert soprano, Annelies Kupper made her début in 1935 at the Opera House of Breslau as a second boy in ZAUBERFLÖTE. Other appearances quickly followed. After the National Theatre of Schwerin (1937-1938) and the National Theatre of Weimar (1938-1940), she came in 1940 to the State Opera of Hamburg. There she remained until 1945, and since then was a celebrated member of the Bavarian State Opera Munich. Annelies Kupper made regularly guest appearances at the State Opera of Vienna (starting in 1938 with the rôle of Eva in MEISTERSINGER) and at the State Opera, Berlin. Appearances led her to Paris, Stockholm, Brussels, The Hague and Amsterdam. At Bayreuth she sang in 1944 Eva in MEISTERSINGER, and in 1960 Elsa in LOHENGRIN. At the Salzburg Festival in August 1952 she created the title rôle in the official première of the Strauss’ DIE LIEBE DER DANAË, as the composer himself had promised her just before his death in 1949. In 1950 she sang the Female Chorus in THE RAPE OF LUCRETIA by Benjamin Britten, and also the solo soprano in MESSIAH and in Franz Schmidt’s BUCH MIT SIEBEN SIEGELN. In 1952-1953 she made a guest appearance at Covent Garden as Chrysothemis in ELEKTRA and in the première there of BUCH MIT SIEBEN SIEGELN. As late as 1961, she sang in Munich Desdemona in Verdi’s OTELLO. Until 1966 she still gave occasional appearances. After 1956 Annelies Kupper worked as lecturer, later as Professor at the Munich College of Music. The beauty of her voice, and the way she expressed her feelings were admired by the critics and the public alike.”
- Aryeh Oron
“Schmitt-Walter made his key début at the Berlin State Opera in 1935, as Luna in IL TROVATORE, which led to a long association with this important theatre, where he would sing wide repertory of lyric parts for the baritone voice. He also performed often at the Hamburg State Opera, the Vienna State Opera, the Salzburg Festival, the Bayreuth Festival, and, from 1950, the Munich State Opera. Outside the Austro-German operatic heartland, he made guest appearances at the Paris Opéra, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, the Liceo in Barcelona, La Monnaie in Brussels and the Holland Festival, among other major European venues.
Schmitt-Walter possessed a comparatively light, high-baritone voice of great beauty and was equipped with an exceptionally good singing technique. He was particularly admired in Mozart and Wagner roles, notably Papageno, Wolfram von Eschenbach, and Beckmesser, which role he often sang at Bayreuth. Schmitt-Walter also performed in Verdi operas such as ERNANI, LA TRAVIATA and UN BALLO IN MASCHERA, mostly in German translation. He enjoyed considerable success in light German operas by Lortzing and also in operetta. He was an excellent lieder interpreter, too. From 1962, he taught in Munich and Copenhagen and died in Bavaria at the age of 84.”
- Loyal Bluto