V1509. RUDOLF BOCKELMANN: Die Fliegende Holländer – Die frist ist um; w.Furtwängler Cond. Vienna Staatsoper Ensemble; Tiana Lemnitz, Eyvind Laholm, Josef von Manowarda, Eugen Fuchs, etc.: DIE MEISTERSINGER – Excerpts - Live Performance, 5 Sept., 1938. (Austria) Preiser 89716. - 717281897167
“Rudolf Bockelmann was a German dramatic baritone and Kammersänger. He built an international career as an outstanding Wagnerian singer but damaged his reputation during the 1930s by joining the Nazi Party. After the war he made his operatic début in 1920 in Celle, and from 1921 to 1926 he sang as a member of the Oper Leipzig's company. Bockelmann's opera career in Germany would hit its peak during the 1930s and last until the 1950s. At the height of his vocal powers, in 1932, he was engaged by the Berlin State Opera, remaining connected to the company until 1944. He sang often at Germany's Bayreuth Festival, too. His first Bayreuth appearance occurred in 1928, and he returned there regularly until 1942. Above all, he was famed for his performances of heroic baritone roles such as that of Wotan in DIE WALKÜRE and DAS RHEINGOLD. He was equally renowned for his assumption of the dramatically demanding part of Hans Sachs in DIE MEISTERSINGER.
Bockelmann enjoyed a successful overseas career as well. He undertook many guest performances prior to World War II at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and at the Chicago Opera in the United States, performing Wagner's works in the main.
In 1937, Bockelmann joined the NSDAP (Nazi Party) and was registered under the membership number 5.849.261. He then became a member of the Präsidialbeirat Comradeship of German Artists within the Ministry of Arts. In August 1944, during the final phase of World War II, dictator Adolf Hitler included him in the Gottbegnadeten list, which gave the names of the most important artists active in Germany under the Third Reich. He was also appointed a music professor to the Imperial School of Music in Salzburg.
His voice was impressively powerful, steady and wide ranging, with a warm and attractive timbre.
After World War Two, Bockelmann was criticized for his Nazi links and his career was restricted thenceforth to the German stage. He sang mainly at the Hamburg State Opera and Hans Hotter succeeded him as Germany's foremost heroic baritone in the international arena. His death occurred in 1958 at the age of 66, in Dresden.”
- Z. D. Akron