OP2657. DON CARLOS (in German), Live Performance, 11 Oct., 1960, w.Konwitschny Cond. Deutschen Staatsoper Berlin; Theo Adam, Martin Ritzmann, Rudolf Jedlicka, Ludmila Dvorákova, Hedwig Müller-Bütow, etc. (E.U.) 2-Walhall 0371. - 4035122653717
"This is a brilliantly-conducted, positively electric performance . . . in glorious sound! Rudolf Jedlicka, a student of Tino Pattiera, Pavel Ludikar and Fernando Carpi, is heard to great advantage. Highly recommended!
Franz Konwitschny (1901-62) was a large and rotund fellow, a fine musician who is less known internationally than he should have been, mostly because he rarely ventured outside the communist controlled east European countries. He was for many years director of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, and his recordings with them include a fine stereo set of the Beethoven symphonies. Actually, he was a powerful Beethoven conductor, and his Eroica with the Staatskapelle Dresden is surely among the best of the 20th Century. He was a fine opera conductor also, and made excellent recordings of Wagner’s FLYING DUTCHMAN, TANNHÄUSER and TRISTAN."
- John P. McKelvey, AMERICAN RECORD GUIDE, May/June, 2012
”Almost forgotten a generation after his death, Franz Konwitschny, director of both the Gewandhaus Orchestra in Leipzig and the Berlin State Opera from 1949 until his death in 1962, was much the finest and by far the most successful East German conductor of his time. Konwitschny didn't seek to match the glamour of Herbert von Karajan, his West German opposite; he was interested in something else entirely. Born in 1901 at the height of German romantic idealism, Konwitschny came of age in the milieu of post-War modernism, and in his maturity the one influence tempered the other so that the classic Konwitschny performances were clean and lucid but enormously concentrated and unbearably intense. For latter-day [listeners] who know best Karajan's more charismatic recordings, Konwitschny…will clear the mind, cleanse the palette and sooth the spirit.”
- James Leonard, allmusic.com
“Theo Adam was one of the leading bass-baritones of the post-World War II era, particularly well known for his Wagnerian rôles. His professional début was at the Dresden State Opera in 1949, which led to a guest appearance in the 1952 Bayreuth Festival, which was also the year he joined the Berlin State Opera. Despite the handicap of living in the Soviet bloc, Adam was selected in 1963, after a few appearances in smaller rôles, to sing the rôle of Wotan in Wagner's RING at Bayreuth in 1963. He later sang the other major bass-baritone and bass rôles in many Wagner operas, including Hans Sachs, King Mark, Amfortas, and the Dutchman. Adam was also well known for the rôles of Baron Ochs, Pizzaro, Wozzeck, King Philip, La Roche, Don Giovanni, and other important parts.
Adam appeared at the world's most prestigious venues, with débuts at the Metropolitan in 1963, Covent Garden in 1967, and the 1972 Salzburg Festival. He was also a highly esteemed oratorio singer. In addition to singing the Bach Passions and several cantatas, he was exceptional in the title rôle of Mendelssohn's ELIJAH.”
- Joseph Stevenson, allmusic.com
“At the Metropolitan Opera, Theo Adam débuted as Hans Sachs on 7 February 1969. That same year he sang in performances of DER RING DES NIBELUNGEN (as Wotan), opposite Birgit Nilsson, Régine Crespin, Lili Chookasian, and Jon Vickers, conducted and directed by Herbert von Karajan. He returned to the Met in 1972 to sing Hans Sachs and Wotan again with a similar cast that now also included Gwyneth Jones. After a sixteen year absence, Adam returned to the Met for the last time in March 1988 to portray Wotan in DIE WALKÜRE.”
- Loyal Bluto